No book is produced by the author alone, but this book could never have been conceived, let alone produced, had it not been for an enormous number of people throughout Europe. Although addressing the general topic of the diagnosis of foreign language proficiency and diagnostic testing in particular, in this book I have drawn heavily on the DIALANG Project (www.dialang.org) for my inspiration, examples and conclusions. Without DIALANG this book would not be here. I am extremely grateful to all who sponsored, designed, worked in and contributed to the DIALANG Project, which started in 1996 and came to the end of its public funding in 2004.
This book offers a defense of the tensed theory of time, a critique of the New Theory of Reference, and an argument that simultaneity is absolute. Although Smith rejects ordinary language philosophy, he shows how it is possible to argue from the nature of language to the nature of reality. Specifically, he argues that semantic properties of tensed sentences are best explained by the hypothesis that they ascribe to events temporal properties of futurity, presentness, or pastness and do not merely ascribe relations of earlier than or simultaneity.
This volume is based on a workshop we organized as part of the Annual Meeting of the German Linguistic Society (DGfS) in 2007. The workshop focused on the role of syntax in the emergence of new genres and brought together insights from research that uses the concept of genre as a reference-point for the description (and, possibly, explanation) of patterns of morphosyntactic variation.
During most of the 20th century, the classical Saussurean distinction between language use and language structure remained untranscendable in much linguistic theory. The dominant view, propagated in particular by generative grammar, was that there are structural facts and usage facts, and that in principle the former are independent of, and can be described in complete isolation from, the latter. With the appearance of
functional-cognitive approaches on the scene, this view has been challenged.
Stylistics is the study of the ways in which meaning is created through language in literature as well as in other types of text. To this end, stylisticians use linguistic models, theories and frameworks as their analytical tools in order to describe and explain how and why a text works as it does, and how we come from the words on the page to its meaning. The analysis typically focuses qualitatively or quantitatively on the phonological,
lexical, grammatical, semantic, pragmatic or discoursal features of texts, on the cognitive aspects involved in the processing of those features by the reader as well as on various combinations of these.
Grammatical Constructions: Back to the roots (Constructional Approaches to Language)
This volume brings into focus the conceptual roots of the notion ‘grammatical construction’ as the theoretical entity that constitutes the backbone of Construction Grammar, a unique grammatical model in which grammatical constructions have the status of elementary building blocks of human language. By exploring the analytic potential and applicability of this notion, the contributions illustrate some of the fundamental concerns of constructional research.
Language is people talking and writing. It is a concrete, tangible aspect of human behaviour. So, if we want to deepen our understanding of language, our best way forward is to apply the same empirical techniques which have deepened our understanding of other observable aspects of the universe during the four centuries since Galileo. Listen, look.