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Words in Time and Place: Exploring Language Through the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary

By David Crystal

Offers a unique view of the English language and its development, and includes witty commentary and anecdotes along the way.


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The Indo-European Controversy: Facts and Fallacies in Historical Linguistics

By Asya Pereltsvaig and Martin W. Lewis

This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."


Academic Paper


Title: Defaults and indeterminacy in temporal grammaticalization: The ‘perfect’ road to perfective
Author: Scott A Schwenter
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://people.cohums.ohio-state.edu/schwenter1
Institution: Ohio State University
Author: Rena Torres Cacoullos
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: University of Pennsylvania
Linguistic Field: General Linguistics; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Spanish
Abstract: Adopting a grammaticalization path perspective on the envelope of variation, that is, the range of grammatical functions along the cross-linguistic perfect-to-perfective path, and employing the variationist comparative method, we compare use of the Present Perfect and Preterit in Mexican and Peninsular Spanish to identify the default past perfective form in each dialect. The linguistic conditioning of the variability provides evidence that the Present Perfect is becoming the default exponent of past perfective in Peninsular Spanish; in empirical terms, the default expression is the one appearing more frequently (combined effect of corrected mean and factor weight) in the most frequent and, crucially, the least specified contexts. The quantitative analysis of natural speech production—rather than elicited—data also suggests a different trajectory for perfect-to-perfective grammaticalization than the commonly assumed route via remoteness distinctions: the Present Perfect's shift from hodiernal to general perfective advances in temporally indeterminate past contexts.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Language Variation and Change Vol. 20, Issue 1, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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