Understanding Language Change

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 17, 1994 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 361 pages
2 Reviews
How and why do language changes begin; how and why do they spread; and how can they ultimately be explained? This new textbook sets out to answer these questions in a clear and helpful way that will be accessible to all students with only an elementary knowledge of linguistics. In the first half of the book Dr. McMahon analyzes changes from every area of grammar. In the second she looks at such topics as language contact, linguistic variation, pidgins and Creoles, and language death. Throughout, the discussion is illustrated by a wealth of examples from English and other languages.
  

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Contents

Three views of sound change
14
the implementation problem
47
Morphological change
69
the Transparency Principle
107
language
138
Semantic and lexical change
174
Language contact
200
Linguistic variation
225
Pidgins and creoles
253
Language death
284
Linguistic evolution?
314
Bibliography
341
Index
353
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