Bill Bryson - Made in America
Black Swan | ISBN:0552998052 | 1994 | PDF | 464 pages | 10 MB
Bryson offers a playfully anecdotal account of the etymology of distinctive words and phrases that help to create a distinctly American English. Readers from Toad Suck, Arkansas, to Idiotsville, Oregon–and everywhere in between–will love Made in America, Bill Bryson’s Informal History of the English Language in the United States. It is, in a word, fascinating. After reading this tour de force, it’s clear that a nation’s language speaks volumes about its true character: you are what you speak. Bryson traces America’s history through the language of the time, then goes on to discuss words culled from everyday activities: immigration, eating, shopping, advertising, going to the movies, and others.
From Publishers Weekly:
Bryson offers a playfully anecdotal account of the etymology of distinctive words and phrases that help to create a distinctly American
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Philip Gucker, “Essential English Grammar”
Publisher: Dover Publications | Pages: 177 | ISBN: 0486216497 | PDF | 8.61 MB
This logical, developmental presentation of the major aspects of English grammar includes all the necessary tools for speech and comprehension. Designed for adults with limited learning time who wish to acquire the basics of everyday English, this grammar features numerous shortcuts and timesavers. Ideal as an introduction, supplement, or refresher.
Efficiency and Complexity in Grammars
Oxford University Press, USA | 2004-12-17 | ISBN 0199252688 | Pages: 322 | PDF | 1.7 MB
This book addresses a question fundamental to any discussion of grammatical theory and grammatical variation: to what extent can principles of grammar be explained through language use? John A. Hawkins argues that there is a profound correspondence between performance data and the fixed conventions of grammars. Preferences and patterns found in the one, he shows, are reflected in constraints and variation patterns in the other. The theoretical consequences of the proposed ‘performance-grammar correspondence hypothesis’ are far-reaching — for current grammatical formalisms, for the innateness hypothesis, and for psycholinguistic models of performance and learning. Drawing on empirical generalizations and insights from language typology, generative grammar, psycholinguistics, and historical linguistics, Professor Hawkins demonstrates that the assumption that grammars are immune to performance is false. He presents detailed empirical case studies and arguments for an alternative theory in which performance has shaped the conventions of grammars and thus the variation patterns found in the world’s languages. The innateness of language, he argues, resides primarily in the mechanisms human beings have for processing and learning it. This important book will interest researchers in linguistics (including typology and universals, syntax, grammatical theory, historical linguistics, functional linguistics, and corpus linguistics), psycholinguistics (including parsing, production, and acquisition), computational linguistics (including language-evolution modelling and electronic corpus development); and cognitive science (including the modeling of the performance-competence relationship, pragmatics, and relevance theory).