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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: Learners and Users of English in China
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics; Language Acquisition
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Just how many millions are there? China's huge English-knowing population of 200-350 million is often cited as evidence of the language being nativized in the world’s most populous country. We may note, however, that the words user and learner are used interchangeably in reference to its speakers of English. When however the focus is on the nativization of English in China, a country in Kachru's 'Expanding Circle' of Englishes, it is imperative to distinguish between users and learners of the language. Kachru points out that institutionalized varieties of English in Outer Circle countries have four functions: the instrumental, the regulative, the interpersonal, and the imaginative/innovative. For English to perform any such functions, there needs to be a large number of proficient bilingual users of the language - which seems not to be the case in China, where English is primarily learned in the classroom as a foreign language. This means that college graduates should have learned the most English, but some constraining factors have prevented the majority of them from obtaining an advanced level of proficiency.


This article appears IN English Today Vol. 22, Issue 2.

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