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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



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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.


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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

   
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Title: The Dynamics of Language, 35
Written By: Ronnie Cann
Ruth Kempson
Lutz Marten
URL: http://www.elsevier.com/linguistics
Series Title: Syntax and Semantics
Description:

For the whole of the last half-century, most theoretical syntacticians have
assumed that knowledge of language is different from the tasks of speaking
and understanding. There have been some dissenters, but, by and large, this
view still holds sway. This book takes a different view: it continues the
task set in hand by Kempson et al (2001) of arguing that the common-sense
intuition is correct that knowledge of language consists in being able to
use it in speaking and understanding. The Dynamics of Language argues that
interpretation is built up across as sequence of words relative to some
context and that this is all that is needed to explain the structural
properties of language. The dynamics of how interpretation is built up is
the syntax of a language system. The authors' first task is to convey to a
general linguistic audience with a minimum of formal apparatus, the
substance of that formal system. Secondly, as linguists, they set
themselves the task of applying the formal system to as broad an array of
linguistic puzzles as possible, the languages analysed ranging from English
to Japanese and Swahili.

"This book makes an uncommon achievement in successfully using detailed
analyses of typologically diverse languages to address foundational
questions about what it means to know a language and about the relation
between speaking and understanding. This book will be of interest to
anybody who is serious about the cognitive science of syntax and semantics."
Colin Phillips, University of Maryland, USA

"For anyone interested in the basic nature of natural language syntax, this
book is a necessary, and enjoyable, read. The authors provide a new take on
how interpretations are constructed by language users,and back up their
general theoretical proposals with original analyses of an eclectic range
of linguistic phenomena. The exposition is clear and engaging-and
challenging. You will have some of your assumptions shaken up; whether they
fall back in place, or are radically rearranged, the experience is
stimulating."
Caroline Heycock, University of Edinburgh, UK

Publication Year: 2005
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Semantics
Syntax
Cognitive Science
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.

Versions:
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0126135355
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: 456
Prices: U.S. $ 155