-- Um... is the first book ever written for a general audience about speech
errors (including malapropisms, Spoonerisms, Freudian slips, eggcorns,
Bushisms) and speech disfluencies (filled pauses like "uh" and "um," silent
pauses, repairs, sentence restarts, repeated words). It's lively and
engaging, designed to keep a reader's attention, and it communicates
linguistic ideas accurately and in depth.
-- When used in undergraduate courses, it generates lively discussions
among students about language and the brain, the history of language, norms
for speaking, and language discrimination. The book is also a good platform
for fieldwork, media observation, critical writing exercises, and other
-- It contains some history of the field of linguistics, which students
don't usually receive.
-- I interviewed dozens of linguists and psycholinguists and delved into
the research literature in order to explain how often these phenomena
occur, why they occur, and why they're scientifically interesting -- not
just funny "stumbles" or discrediting "verbal crutches" that we should
avoid. Among your colleagues who appear in its pages: Vicki Fromkin,
Merrill Garrett, Arnold Zwicky, Jeri Jaeger, Rulon Wells, Herb Clark, Jean
E. Fox Tree, Ann Cutler, Heather Bortfeld, Gary Dell, Bernard Baars, and
-- "An enjoyable tour of linguistic mishaps...Rewarding... It reveals the
dynamic nature of the human mind." The Wall Street Journal said that
"Erard's enthusiasm for his subject is infectious. He gets you wondering
about blundering." -The New York Times Book Review
To order a desk copy, contact Claire Kelley at firstname.lastname@example.org or
go to http://www.randomhouse.com/academic/examcopy.
If you decide to use Um... in a course, I can be available for web-based
visits with your class. For more about the book, including all the reviews,
go to http://www.umthebook.com.