- Tapa blanda: 230 páginas
- Editor: Gotham Books; Edición: First Printing (1 de octubre de 2009)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 1592404944
- ISBN-13: 978-1592404940
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
- Clasificación en los más vendidos de Amazon: nº120.328 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros (Ver el Top 100 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros)
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Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold History of English (Inglés) Tapa blanda – 1 oct 2009
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Reseña del editor
A survey of the English language's usage mysteries considers the ways in which English developed and how it may reflect cultural values, in a reference that covers such topics as Celtic and Welsh influences, the origins of specific syntax patterns, and the role of language in forming early Britain. 25,000 first printing.
Biografía del autor
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The lengthy introduction is to explain why this is such an interesting -- if not entirely convincing -- book. It provides an unusual historical look at English -- not an overview, but a specific consideration of the ways in which English grammar has diverged from that of the other Germanic languages. This, McWhorter proposes, reflects the underlying influence of Celtic. What happened to the Celtic language(es) presumably spoken by most of the inhabitants of Britain at the time of the Anglo-Saxon invasions is a tantalizing question that most histories of the language brush over. McWhorter doesn't; his argument is interesting, but I still wonder if Celtic could have had that much grammatical impact with so little impact on the lexicon. Whether or not McWhorter is right (and is there a "right" answer?} he is certainly worth reading.
4.7/5 If I had to be overly critical and specific.
in rehashing them. Instead he promotes several theories/topics
that are different from the conventional wisdom, and for which he
argues very convincingly.
Namely these are that
a) though most linguists argue that we inherited almost nothing
from Gaelic languages, McWhorter points out that much of our
grammar is Welsh and Cornish.
b) that the transition from Old to Middle English did not
rapidly occur in the 150 years after 1066, but that had been
going on all along and was only committed to paper then when
scribes started writing English again after a gap. There is
very little real evidence for this, but it is also very very
plausible. Compare Mark Twain's writing when he attempts to
put real speech down on paper with anything contemporary.
c) some Semitic language was probably responsible for much of
the wierdness of proto-Germanic in the Indo-European language
family. There is a far flung theory (which he notes as such)
that this was the Phoenicians.
McWhorter also spends a while exploring the intricacies of how Old Norse
and Old English collided, fighting the grammatical dictocrats, and far
too long debunking the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis. McWhorter's writing is
entertaining and flawless.
I would buy the Story of English as an intro, David Crystal's Cambridge
if you liked that, and this book 3rd. I wish he had a longer book on English
or even the evolution of the Germanic languages.