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new nsm book

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  • William T. Branch
    Here is a forward of a post from the linguist list and nsm list you all may find interesting. -bill (Seen on the LINGUIST list) Title: English Subtitle:
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 2, 2006
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      Here is a forward of a post from the linguist list and nsm list you
      all may find interesting.

      -bill


      (Seen on the LINGUIST list)

      Title: English
      Subtitle: Meaning and Culture
      Published: 2006
      Publisher: Oxford University Press
      &nbs= p; http://www.oup.com/us

      Book URL: http://www.oup.com/uk/catalogue/?ci=3D9780195174755

      Author: Anna Wierzbicka
      Paperback: ISBN: 0195174755 Pages: 368 Price:
      U.K. =A3 17.99 Comment: ISBN-13: 978-0-19-517475-5
      Abstract:

      It is widely accepted that English is the first
      truly global language and lingua franca. Its
      dominance has even led to its use and adaptation
      by local communities for their own purposes and
      needs. One might see English in this context as
      being simply a neutral, universal vehicle for the
      expression of local thoughts and ideas. In fact,
      English words and phrases have embedded in them a
      wealth of cultural baggage that is invisible to
      most native speakers. Anna Wierzbicka, a
      distinguished linguist known for her theories of
      semantics, has written the first book that
      connects the English language with what she terms "Anglo" culture.

      Wierzbicka points out that language and culture
      are not just interconnected, but inseparable.
      This is evident to non-speakers trying to learn
      puzzling English expressions. She uses original
      research to investigate the "universe of meaning"
      within the English language (both grammar and
      vocabulary) and places it in historical and
      geographical perspective. For example, she looks
      at the history of the terms "right" and "wrong"
      and how with the influence of the Reformation
      "right" came to mean "correct." She examines the
      ideas of "fairness" and "reasonableness" and
      shows that, far from being cultural universals,
      they are in fact unique creations of modern
      English. She does the same to other English words
      and phrases, as well as dissecting the way
      English countries like Singapore and Tasmania
      have embedded their own values into their adapted
      versions. This engrossing and fascinating work of
      scholarship should appeal not only to linguists
      and others concerned with language and culture,
      but the large group of scholars studying English
      and English as a second language.
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