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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?

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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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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.


Academic Paper


Title: Left-Edge Deletion in English and Subject Omission in Diaries
Author: Andrew Weir
Institution: University of Massachusetts
Linguistic Field: Phonology; Syntax
Subject Language: English
Abstract: This article discusses deletion in spoken and written English. It notes that subjects are frequently dropped both in informal spoken English (Napoli 1982; Zwicky & Pullum 1983b) and in certain registers of written English such as diaries (Haegeman 1990, 1997, 2007; Haegeman & Ihsane 1999, 2001). The article argues in favour of Napoli's phonological analysis of left-edge deletion in spoken English, and provides a formalisation of Napoli's account in the framework of Selkirk's (1995, 2001, 2011) optimality-theoretic analysis of syntax–phonology mapping. A comparison is drawn with the case of subject drop in the diary register. Due to the difference in surface distribution of the phenomenon between the spoken and written cases, the analysis cannot transfer directly. However, I suggest that, combined with arguments made by Haegeman (2002) for a sentence-medial position for modifiers in written English, the phonological analysis can account for a large subset of the diary drop cases.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in English Language and Linguistics Vol. 16, Issue 1, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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