The Last Word: The English Language: Opinions and Prejudices

Overview

Renowned lexicographer Laurence Urdang’s final reflections on the current state of the English language are recorded here; he died soon after completing the manuscript. All scholars, librarians, editors, students, and general readers with an interest in the English language will enjoy this fascinating account of, in Urdang’s words, “a life devoted to all aspects of language.”

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Overview

Renowned lexicographer Laurence Urdang’s final reflections on the current state of the English language are recorded here; he died soon after completing the manuscript. All scholars, librarians, editors, students, and general readers with an interest in the English language will enjoy this fascinating account of, in Urdang’s words, “a life devoted to all aspects of language.”

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780780811713
  • Publisher: KWS Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/15/2010
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Laurence Urdang wrote or edited more than 100 books, including dictionaries, thesauruses, and books on language and its usage. He is the editor and compiler of the magisterial Random House Dictionary of the English Language (1966), and in 1974 he founded Verbatim: The Language Quarterly.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Introduction Publisher's Note

Chapter One: Language Change
    
Political, Social and Grammatical Correctness
Chapter Two: Word Origins
     Folk Origins
     "True" Etymologies
     Loanwords as Origins
     Yiddish
     Translation
     Foreign Origins
Chapter Three: Meaning
     Denotation and Connotation
     Ambiguity
     Puns
Chapter Four: Words and Expressions
     Vocabulary
     Juncture
     Punctuation Variation
     The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
     Acquiring Language Skill
     "Nonwords"
     Curiosities and Trivia
     Word Chaos
     The Wrong Word
Chapter Five: Language and Culture and Language
     Great Literature
     The Good Old Days
Chapter Six: Names
     Nicknames
     Names as Metaphors
Chapter Seven: Feminist and Politically Correct Language Chapter Eight: Good English/Bad English
     Usage
     Grammar 
     Mixed Metaphors
     Dangling Participles, Misplaced Modifiers
     Strange Bedfellows
     Advertising
     Word Order
     Sheer Nonsense
     Subjunctive
      Disagreement
     Singularly Curious
     Sequence of Tenses
     this and that
     that
for very
     too
for very
     times
     The enormity of enormity
     the reason is because
     dived/dove and Other "Nonexistent" Words
     lie/lay and bad/badly
     Odious Comparisons
     Faulty Parallelism
Chapter Nine: Taboo, Slang, Informal, and Colloquial Language Chapter Ten: Bad Writing, Taste, and Discrimination
     Good and Bad Writing
     Good Writers, Bad Writing
     Carelessness and Other Bad Habits
     The Oxymoron
     Idiom and Idioms
Chapter Eleven: Spelling Reform Chapter Twelve: Controversy and Dictionaries
     Obsolete and Archaic Words
     Pronunciation in Dictionaries
     Miscellany
Chapter Thirteen: Computers
     Computers Since 1969
     Software
Chapter Fourteen: Pronunciation
     English Pronunciation
     Pronunciation and Spelling and Pronunciation
     British and American Pronunciation
     Foreign Words and Sounds in English
     Foreign Names in English in America
     Intonation
     Variants
     Spelling and Pronunciation in Quotations
     Spelling

Appendix: "The Chaos"
Index About the Author

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