Preface to 1st edition; Preface to 2nd edition; Preface to 3rd edition; Part I. Popular Ideas About Language: 1. The prescriptive tradition; 2. The equality of languages; 3. The magic of language; 4. The functions of language; 5. Language and thought; Part II. Language and Identity: 6. Physical identity; 7. Psychological identity; 8. Geographical identity; 9. Ethnic and national identity; 10. Social identity; 11 Contextual identity; 12. Stylistic identity and literature; Part III. The Structure of Language: 13. Linguistic levels; 14. Typology and universals; 15. The statistical structure of language; 16. Grammar; 17. Semantics; 18. Dictionaries; 19. Names; 20. Discourse and text; 21. Pragmatics; Part IV. The Medium of Language: Speaking and Listening: 22. The anatomy and physiology of speech; 23. The acoustics of speech; 24. The instrumental analysis of speech; 25. Speech reception; 26. Speech interaction with machines; 27. The sounds of speech; 28. The linguistic use of sound; 29. Suprasegmentals; 30. Sound symbolism; Part V. The Medium of Language: Writing and Reading: 31. Written and spoken language; 32. Graphic expression; 33. Graphology; 34. The process of reading and writing; Part VI. The Medium of Language: Signing and Seeing: 35. Sign language; 36. Sign language structure; 37. Types of sign language; Part VII. Child Language Acquisition: 38. Investigating children's language; 39. The first year; 40. Phonological development; 41. Grammatical development; 42. Semantic development; 43. Pragmatic development; 44. Language development in school; Part VIII. Language, Brain, and Disability: 45. Language and the brain; 46. Language disability; Part IX. The Languages of the World: 47. How many languages?; 48. How many speakers?; 49. The origins of language; 50. Families of language; 51. The Indo-European family; 52. Other families; 53. Language isolates; 54. Language change; 55. Pidgins and creoles; Part X. Language in the World: 56. The language barrier; 57. Translating and interpreting; 58. Artificial languages; 59. World languages; 60. Multilingualism; 61. Language planning; 62. Foreign language teaching and learning; 63. Language for special purposes; Part XI. Language and Communication: 64. Language and other communication systems; 65. Linguistics; Appendices: I. Glossary; II. Special symbols and abbreviations; III. Table of the world's languages; IV. Further reading; V. Index of languages, families, dialects, and scripts; VI. Index of authors and personalities; VII. Index of topics; Acknowledgements.
This completely revised and expanded edition of Crystal's acclaimed book incorporates developments in the lively field of language study.
David Crystal is one of the world's foremost authorities on language and works as a writer, editor, lecturer, and broadcaster. He is Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor and has published over 100 books. His most recent publications include: Think On My Words: Exploring Shakespeare's Language (2008), Language and the Internet, 2nd Edition (2006) and English as a Global Language, 2nd Edition (2003).
This is a collection of concise and readable essays on the many subfields of linguistics, ranging from the invention of the alphabet to the Kurzweil Reading Machine and covering both theoretical and applied approaches to the subject. Numerous illustrations and charts make the text more vivid, and a glossary, a table of the world's languages, and several indexes make it eminently usable. Respected British linguist Crystal has done an admirable job of condensing information from many specialized fields into a form that will be intelligible to lay readers as well as linguists. Useful for public as well as academic libraries. Catherine V. von Schon, SUNY at Stony Brook Lib.
'... a celebration of language in all its oddity, beauty, fun,
astonishing complexity and limitless variety.' London Review of
'The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language is a masterpeice of comprehensiveness and clarity.' New Internationalist
'... an ingenious tour de force ... stunningly diverse linguistic menu.' Robert Burchfield, The Times
'... magnificently demonstrates Professor Crystal's outstanding breadth of knowledge, incisiveness of judgment and superb skills at getting to the heart of highly complex issues in a clear and straightforward manner.' Randolph Quirk, FBA
'... David Crystal has a great facility for explaining language issues with plain good sense, wit and admirable brevity.' The Times Educational Supplement
'One of the world's foremost linguistic experts, Crystal has authored numerous tomes on the history and study of the English language, though this, with its full-colour illustrations and exhaustive index, is arguably the most comprehensive. A useful guide for anyone - from the interested layperson to the most widely read of academics.' The Independent