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1 Language Change: Progress or Decay

Jean Aitchison

Fontana Paperbacks, London, UK, 1987, 0-00-686101-6 / 9780006861010, Fourth Impression, Paperback, Good, 
Printed Pages: 266. Slightly rubbed cover. Pages have become slightly yellow. 012458

Price: 4.95 USD
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2 Language Change: Progress or Decay?

Jean Aitchison

Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 2001, 0-521-79535-4 / 9780521795357, Third Edition, Paperback, New, 
This is a lucid and up-to-date overview of language change. It discusses where our evidence about language change comes from, how and why changes happen, and how languages begin and end. It considers both changes which occurred long ago, and those currently in progress. It does this within the framework of one central question - is language change a symptom of progress or decay? It concludes that language is neither progressing nor decaying, but that an understanding of the factors surrounding change is essential for anyone concerned about language alteration. For this substantially revised third edition, Jean Aitchison has included two new chapters on change of meaning and grammaticalization. Sections on new methods of reconstruction and ongoing chain shifts in Britain and America have also been added as well as over 150 new references. The work remains non-technical in style and accessible to readers with no previous knowledge of linguistics. ?Lucid and up-to-date overview of language change ?Third edition of this bestselling textbook is substantially revised and includes two new chapters ?Non-technical in style and accessible to the reader with no previous knowledge of linguistics Contents Part I. Preliminaries: 1. The ever-whirling wheel: the inevitability of change; 2. Collecting up clues: piecing together the evidence; 3. Charting the changes: studying changes in progress; Part II. Transition: 4. Spreading the word: from person to person; 5. Conflicting loyalties: opposing social pressures; 6. Catching on and taking off: how sound changes spread through a language; 7. Caught in the web: how syntactic changes work through a language; 8. The wheels of language: grammaticalization; 9. Slip slidin?away: change of meaning; Part III: 10. The reason why: sociolinguistic causes of change; 11. Doing what comes naturally: inherent causes of language change; 12. Repairing the patterns: therapeutic changes; 13. The Mad Hatter’s tea-party: chain reaction changes; Part IV: 14. Development and breakdown: child language and language disorders; 15. Language birth: how languages begin; 16. Language death: how languages end; 17. Progress or decay?: Assessing the situation. Printed Pages: 324 with 25 line diagrams, 17 tables, and 7 graphs. 012763

Price: 32.00 USD
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3 The Seeds of Speech: Language Origin and Evolution

Jean Aitchison

Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 2000, 0-521-785715 / 9780521785716, First Edition, Paperback, New, 
Human language is a weird communication system: it has more in common with birdsong than with the calls of other primates. In this wide-ranging and accessible overview, Jean Aitchison explores the origins of human language and how it has evolved. She likens the search to a vast pre-historic jigsaw puzzle, in which numerous fragments of evidence must be assembled. Such evidence is pieced together from a mixture of linguistic and non-linguistic sources like evolution theory, archaeology, psychology, and anthropology. She explains why language is so strange, outlines recent theories about its origin, and discusses possible paths of evolution. Finally, Jean Aitchison considers what holds all languages together and prevents them from becoming unlearnably different from one another. The Seeds of Speech is a fascinating book that will appeal to everyone who is interested in the origins and evolution of human language, including linguists, anthropologists, psychologists, archaeologists, and the general reader. Contents Preface; Part I. Puzzles: 1. A natural curiosity: how did language begin?; 2. A peculiar habit: what is language for?; 3. The bother at Babel: why do languages differ so much?; 4. Distinct duties: is language an independent skill?; Part II. Origin: 5. The family tree: the evolutionary background; 6. A devious mind: the basic requirements; 7. Broken air: inherited ingredients; 8. Small beginnings: first steps; Part III. Evolution: 9. The secong word: the emergence of rules; 10. The tower of speech: expansion; 11. Time travelling: extra attachments; 12. Rebuilding on the high seas: keeping going; Part IV. Diffusion: 13. The widening circle: moving outwards; 14. The hidden core: the hunt for universals; 15. The real magician: ruling the rules; 16. Unweaving the rainbow: separating the strands; 17. The endless stair: past and future; Symbols used in the text; Notes and suggestions for further reading; References; Index. Printed Pages: 294 with 27 line diagrams, 8 half-tones, 1 table and 5 maps. 008653

Price: 25.00 USD
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