"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.
This book investigates the nature of human language and its importance for
the study of the mind. It asks what language is from a biological point of
view and what the relative contribution of nature and nurture is when a
child learns his or her language. Finally it asks how human language
evolved and considers the similarities and differences between human
language and animal communication systems. Uniquely, it argues that genetic
or biological endowment plays a more central role in the aquisition of
language than instruction, learning, or cultural determinants. "Jenkins's
book is useful for the range of topics that it discusses, and for the
historical dimension that it provide on biolinguistic exploration as seen
from a Chomskyan viewpoint."