Introducing English Grammar / Edition 2

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Why study grammar? What is standard English? Introducing English Grammar provides answers to key questions like these, and guides the reader through the practical analysis of the syntax of English sentences.

All special terms are carefully explained as they are introduced, and the book is written for readers with no previous experience of grammatical analysis, It is ideal for ail those beginning their study of linguistics, English language or speech pathology, as well as students with primarily literary interests who need to cover the basics of linguistic analysis.

The book's approach is in line with current research in grammar, a particular advantage for students who may go on to study syntax more depth.

Highlights include:

examples and exercises using real language taken from The Big Issue magazines.

use of non-standard varieties of English to ensure coverage of a breadth of constructions.

answers to the exercises and explanatory notes at linguistics.

Students are encouraged to think about the terminology as a tool kit for studying language, and to develop the skill of analysing standard and non-standard language using these tools.

This new edition has been fully revised and updated. There is a new chapter on World English, a new glossary and the free website also provides further reading.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for the first edition

The engagingly informal style of this excellent book brings the study of English grammar alive. I particularly admire the way in which grammatical points are copiously exemplified by quotations from real language in everyday use. The text is so well structured and so clearly written that, although it would undoubtedly be a valuable adjunct to a course of lectures, it could also be used by learners studying the subject on their own.

Professor Katharine Perera

One of the few [books] able to cover a lot of ground without being too generally shallow... It is written in a clear, accessible, and reader-orientated style with just the right amount of wit to make it entertaining... the examples taken from daily speech are interesting... this is a very useful, clear, accessible and interesting textbook for first-year students of English and / or linguistics... Students dealing with English on the basis of this book will not have the feeling that it is not worth the paper it is printed on; instead they will see that doing grammar can be fun.

The Linguist List

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781444109870
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 7/4/2010
  • Series: A Hodder Arnold Publication Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 328
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Kersti Börjars is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Manchester, UK. She is the author of Feature Distribution in Swedish Noun Phrases.

Kate Burridge is Professor of Linguistics at Monash University, Australia. She is the author of Forbidden Words: Taboo and the Censoring of Language.

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Table of Contents

Preface to the second edition vii

Preface to the first edition ix

1 Introduction: the glamour of grammar

1.1 Purpose and nature of grammatical description 1

1.2 Standard English and variation 2

1.3 English rules, OK? 5

1.4 Why study English grammar? 7

1.5 English language in the workplace 12

1.6 The branches of linguistics 14

Exercises 15

2 The structure of sentences

2.1 Introduction 18

2.2 The structure of words 18

2.3 How do we know sentences have structure? 23

2.4 Constituency tests 24

2.5 Three additional tests 33

2.6 Nested constituents 34

2.7 Representing structure 38

2.8 Points to remember 40

Exercises 41

3 The words of English

3.1 Introduction 43

3.2 The meaning of lexical categories 43

3.3 Structural criteria 44

3.4 Major categories 47

3.5 The minor categories 67

3.6 Phrasal categories and their structure 70

3.7 Points to remember 76

Exercises 77

4 Functions within the clause

4.1 Introduction 79

4.2 The predicate 80

4.3 The subject 81

4.4 The object 88

4.5 The predicative complement 92

4.6 The adverbial 95

4.7 Trees 100

4.8 Points to remember 103

Exercises 104

5 Different sentence types

5.1 Introduction 107

5.2 Declaratives 108

5.3 Interrogatives 108

5.4 Imperatives 115

5.5 Exclamatives 119

5.6 Echoes 120

5.7 Trees 122

5.8 Points to remember 125

Exercises 125

6 The verb phrase

6.1 The constituency of verb strings 128

6.2 Time and tense 131

6.3 Lexical verbs and auxiliary verbs 133

6.4 Auxiliary verbs 137

6.5 Lexical have, be and do 149

6.6 Classes of lexical verbs 150

6.7 Trees 158

6.8 Points to remember 165

Exercises 165

7 The noun phrase

7.1 How to spot a noun phrase 167

7.2 Who's the boss? 168

7.3 Determiners 169

7.4 Pre-modifiers 173

7.5 Pre-determiners 176

7.6 Post-modifiers 177

7.7 Complements 178

7.8 Trees 179

7.9 Points to remember 187

Exercises 187

8 Clauses within clauses

8.1 Clauses 189

8.2 Finite sub-clauses 192

8.3 Non-finite clauses 202

8.4 Subjectless clauses 210

8.5 Trees 211

8.6 Points to remember 218

Exercises 219

9 Beyond the sentence

9.1 Introduction 221

9.2 Information packaging 221

9.3 Discourse strategies 228

9.4 Points to remember 236

Exercises 237

10 Grammar at work

10.1 Introduction 241

10.2 Speech versus writing 242

10.3 E-Speak - somewhere between speech and writing 249

10.4 Occupational varieties 251

10.5 Points to remember 264

Exercises 265

11 English worldwide

11.1 Introduction 267

11.2 New Englishes: Indian English 269

11.3 Other Englishes 273

11.4 Variation in the Native Englishes 281

11.5 Vernacular universals 282

11.6 The future of Standard English 284

11.7 Points to remember 286

Exercises 286

Further reading 289

Glossary 294

Index 307

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