Featured Linguist!

Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"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

Donate Now | Visit the Fund Drive Homepage

Amount Raised:


Still Needed:


Can anyone overtake Syntax in the Subfield Challenge ?

Grad School Challenge Leader: University of Washington

Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

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.

New from Cambridge University Press!


Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

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.

Book Information


Title: Shifting the Focus
Subtitle: From Static Structures to the Dynamics of Interpretation
Written By: Daniel Wedgwood
URL: http://books.elsevier.com/elsevier/?isbn=0080445772
Series Title: Current Research in the Semantics/Pragmatics Interface, Volume 14

How direct is the mapping between linguistic constructions and their
interpretations? Much less direct than we commonly assume, according to
Daniel Wedgwood. Extending current ideas from frameworks like Relevance
Theory and Dynamic Syntax, Wedgwood upholds a radical position on modelling
linguistic competence: the idea of interfacing static syntactic and
semantic representations must be abandoned in favour of models of the
incremental construction of meaning during parsing---which may involve
significant pragmatic enrichment. In illustration, Wedgwood presents a
detailed study of a key meeting point of grammar and pragmatics: focus, in
particular its syntactic expression in Hungarian. The result is a
strikingly simple explanation of a complex set of syntactico-semantic
phenomena, touching on information structure, negation, quantification and
complex predication. For its clear and bold theoretical argumentation and
its novel analysis of some notorious data, this book will be of interest to
all linguists, philosophers and computational linguists concerned with the
relationships between syntax, semantics, pragmatics and information structure.

Table of Contents:
Language and Meaning. Relevance Theory and Implications for Linguistic
Structure. The Hungarian Data. Focus and Grammar. Focus and Quantifier
Distribution. Dynamic Structured Meanings: Predication and Information
Structure. Verbal Modifiers and Main Predication. 'Aspectual Constructions'
and Negation. Summary and Conclusions. Bibliography. Index.

"Wedgwood's book tackles two difficult tasks at once. It makes a radical
contribution to debate about the basic form of linguistic theory and
presents an impressively broad and deep example of specific linguistic

This book will interest anyone concerned with the interrelations of
structure and meaning in natural languages - whether on a philosophical
level or via numerous concrete proposals on issues like the interaction of
information structure with quantification and negation."
-Professor James R Hurford, University of Edinburgh, UK

"A novel and radical dynamic perspective on language, with Hungarian as a
case study. Anyone interested in how the web of syntax and semantics fit
together with properties of general reasoning should not miss out on this
-Professor Ruth Kempson, King's College London

Publication Year: 2005
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0080445772
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: 312
Prices: U.K. £ 62.99
U.S. $ 99.95
Europe EURO 91.95