How English Works : A Linguistic Introduction

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  • Edition: 2nd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-01-01
  • Publisher: Longman
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A major introductory language/linguistics textbook written specifically for English and Education majors, this book is an engaging introduction to the structure of English, general theories in linguistics, and important issues in sociolinguistics. This accessible text provides more extensive coverage of issues of particular interest to English and Education majors. Tapping into our natural curiosity about language, it invites all students to connect academic linguistics to everyday use of the English language and to become active participants in the construction of linguistic knowledge. The second edition provides updated examples of language changeincluding new slang and other word coinages, grammatical developments, and sound changesas well as new research findings on American dialects, language acquisition, language evolution, eggcorns, English and the Internet, and much more.

Table of Contents

Abbreviations p. xx
Preface to Instructorsp. xxiii
Letter to Studentsp. xxviii
A Language like English
The Story of Aks
Language, Language Everywhere
The Power of Language
Name Calling
Judging by Ear
A Question to Discuss: What Makes Us Hear an Accent?
The System of Language
Arbitrariness and Systematicity
A Scholar to Know:Ferdinand de Saussure (1857-1913)
Human Language versus Animal Communication
Birds and Bees
Chimps and Bonobos
Distinctive Characteristics of Human Language
The Process of Language Change
Language Genealogies
A Question to Discuss: Do Languages Have Families?
Mechanics of Language Change
Progress or Decay?
Attitudes about Language Change
Special Focus: Evolution of Human Language
Suggested Reading
Language and Authority
Who Is in Control?
Language Academies
Language Mavens
Defining Standard English
Descriptive versus Prescriptive Grammar Rules
Case Study One: Double Negatives
Case Study Two: Ainrsquo;t
Case Study Three: Who and Whom
The Status of Prescriptive Rules
Spoken versus Written Language
A Question to Discuss: Which Is More Permanent, the Written or Spoken Word?
Language and Society: Are We Losing Our Memories?
Dictionaries of English
The Earliest Dictionaries of English
The Beginnings of Modern Lexicography
Historical Lexicography
American Lexicography
A Question to Discuss:Should Dictionaries Ever Prescribe?
English Grammar, Usage, and Style
The Earliest Usage Books
Prescriptive versus Descriptive Tendencies in Grammars of English
Modern Approaches to English Usage
Special Focus: Corp
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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