How Language Works (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Penguin, Nov 1, 2007 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 512 pages
18 Reviews
Steven Pinker meets Bill Bryson in this landmark exploration of language.

In the author's own words, "How Language Works is not about music, cookery, or sex. But it is about how we talk about music, cookery, and sex-or, indeed, anything at all." Language is so fundamental to everyday life that we take it for granted. But as David Crystal makes clear in this work of unprecedented scope, language is an extremely powerful tool that defines the human species.

Crystal offers general readers a personal tour of the intricate workings of language. He moves effortlessly from big subjects like the origins of languages, how children learn to speak, and how conversation works to subtle but revealing points such as how email differs from both speech and writing in important ways, how language reveals a person's social status, and how we decide whether a word is rude or polite.

Broad and deep, but with a light and witty touch, How Language Works is the ultimate layman's guide to how we communicate with one another.


  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4
4 stars
7
3 stars
5
2 stars
2
1 star
0

This is an interesting and easy to read book. - Goodreads
An excellent introduction/supplement on linguistics. - Goodreads
A good primary reference book on language/linguistics - Goodreads

Review: How Language Works: How Babies Babble, Words Change Meaning, and Languages Live or Die

User Review  - Angus Stirling - Goodreads

''Aren't you lovely!' said a man outside the window of a car showroom, unaware that a linguist was passing him at the time.' 73 pithy chapters giving an introduction to the many facets of language. Read full review

Review: How Language Works: How Babies Babble, Words Change Meaning, and Languages Live or Die

User Review  - Louise - Goodreads

This book is arranged in chapters that can stand alone or be read as a volume. Chapters are divided into sub chapters which similarly stand alone or can be read as a cohesive work of prose. While the ... Read full review

Contents

38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45

6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
Further Reading
Index
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

David Crystal is honorary professor of linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor, and the editor of The Penguin Encyclopedia.

 

Bibliographic information