"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
Investigations in Universal Grammar: A Guide to Experiments on the Acquisition of Syntax and Semantics
This introductory guide to language acquisition research is presented within the framework of Universal Grammar, a theory of the human faculty for language. The authors focus on two experimental techniques for assessing childrens linguistic competence: the Elicited Production task, a production task, and the Truth Value Judgment task, a comprehension task. Their methodologies are designed to overcome the numerous obstacles to empirical investigation of childrens language competence. They produce research results that are more reproducible and less likely to be dismissed as an artifact of improper experimental procedure. In the first section of the book, the authors examine the fundamental assumptions that guide research in this area; they present both a theory of linguistic competence and a model of language processing. In the following two sections, they discuss in detail their two experimental techniques.