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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Academic Paper

Title: ‘Insubordination’ in the light of the Uniformitarian Principle
Author: Alexander Bergs
Author: Thomas Hoffmann
Linguistic Field: Historical Linguistics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Assuming that the Uniformitarian Principle refers to processes of production and perception, I argue that it remains invaluable for work on language in the last five thousand years or so, the period of linguistic historical record. In this article I show that some proposals about the development of ‘insubordination’ (Evans 2007), particularly those that link it to degrammaticalization (e.g. Higashiizumi 2006 on because-monoclauses; Brinton 2014 on as if clauses), are artifacts of theory (Kaiser & Struckmeier 2015), and do not conform to processes that can be projected from a Uniformitarian Process Principle that pays attention to interactional practices. I investigate evidence in the history of English for the development of finite independent monoclauses that are introduced by subordinators, for example, Because you don't understand, If we could see that picture again, As if you are not gorgeous. I conclude that, at least in English, such monoclauses are chunks that are used incrementally in on-line interaction, just like independent NPs and prepositional and adverbial phrases (Ford et al. 2002; Couper-Kuhlen 2011; see also Lindström & Londen 2008 on Swedish monoclauses with subordinators; Gras & Sansineña 2015 on Spanish monoclausal que-constructions). In such cases degrammaticalization is not relevant. The Uniformitarian Processes Principle can serve as an important corrective on artifacts of theory.


This article appears IN English Language and Linguistics Vol. 21, Issue 2, which you can READ on Cambridge's site .

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