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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: Insight into the Structure of Compound Words among Speakers of Chinese and English
Linguistic Field: Morphology
Subject Language: Chinese, Mandarin
Abstract: Knowledge of compound word structures in Chinese and English was investigated, comparing 435 Chinese and 258 Americans, including second, fourth, and sixth graders, and college undergraduates. As anticipated, the results revealed that Chinese speakers performed better on a word structure analogy task than their English-speaking counterparts. Also, as anticipated, speakers of both languages performed better on noun + noun and verb + particle compounds, which are more productive in their respective languages than noun + verb and verb + noun compounds, which are less productive. Both Chinese and English speakers performed significantly better on novel compounds than on familiar compounds, most likely because familiar compounds are lexicalized and do not invite decomposition into constituents.


This article appears IN Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 33, Issue 4.

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