"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.
Pattern Grammar: A Corpus-driven Approach to the Lexical Grammar of English
This book describes an approach to lexis and grammar based on the concept of phraseology and of language patterning arising from work on large corpora. The notion of 'pattern' as a systematic way of dealing with the interface between lexis and grammar was used in Collins Cobuild English Dictionary (1995) and in the two books in the Collins Cobuild Grammar Patterns series (1996; 1998). This volume describes the research that led to these publications, and explores the theoretical and practical implications of the research. The first chapter sets the work in the context of work on phraseology. The next two chapters give several examples of patterns and how they are identified. Chapters 4 and 5 discuss and exemplify the association of pattern and meaning. Chapters 6, 7 and 8 relate the concept of pattern to traditional approaches to grammar and to discourse. Chapter 9 summarizes the book and adds to the theoretical discussion, as well as indicating the applications of this approach to language teaching. The volume is intended to contribute to the current debate concerning how corpora challenge existing linguistic theories, and as such will be of interest to researchers in the fields of grammar, lexis, discourse and corpus linguistics. It is written in an accessible style, however, and will be equally suitable for students taking courses in those areas.