Garner's modern American usage

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Oxford University Press, Aug 27, 2009 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 942 pages
32 Reviews
Since first appearing in 1998, Garner's Modern American Usage has established itself as the preeminent guide to the effective use of the English language. Brimming with witty, erudite essays on troublesome words and phrases, GMAU authoritatively shows how to avoid the countless pitfalls that await unwary writers and speakerswhether the issues relate to grammar, punctuation, word choice, or pronunciation.

An exciting new feature of this third edition is Garner's Language-Change Index, which registers where each disputed usage in modern English falls on a five-stage continuum from nonacceptability (to the language community as a whole) to acceptability, giving the book a consistent standard throughout. GMAU is the first usage guide ever to incorporate such a language-change index. The judgments are based both on Garner's own original research in linguistic corpora and on his analysis of hundreds of earlier studies. Another first in this edition is the panel of critical readers: 120-plus commentators who have helped Garner reassess and update the text, so that every page has been improved.

Bryan A. Garner is a writer, grammarian, lexicographer, teacher, and lawyer. He has written professionally about English usage for more than 28 years, and his work has achieved widespread renown. David Foster Wallace proclaimed that Bryan Garner is a genius and William Safire called the book excellent. In fact, due to the strength of his work on GMAU, Garner was the grammarian asked to write the grammar-and-usage chapter for the venerable Chicago Manual of Style. His advice on language matters is second to none.

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Review: Garner's Modern American Usage

User Review  - Goodreads

I won't read this straight through, or probably finish it--it's a reference book. But it would be pleasant enough to read cover-to-cover. I just learned how to pronounce flaccid -- see pages 350-351. Read full review

Review: Garner's Modern American Usage

User Review  - Margaret Mccormick - Goodreads

Not so much "read" as "use often and have for years." Read full review


Preface to the First Edition
List of Abbreviations
Making Peace in the Language Wars
The Ongoing Struggles of GarlicHangers
Glossary of Grammatical Rhetorical
Select Index of Writers Quoted or Mentioned

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About the author (2009)

Bryan Garner is the best-selling author of The Elements of Legal Style, The Winning Brief, and Legal Writing in Plain English, co-author with Antonin Scalia of Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges, and editor-in-chief of Black's Law Dictionary. With his company LawProse, Inc., Garner has given writing seminars on improving communication to more than 80,000 lawyers and judges across the country.