A History of English Reflexive Pronouns

Person, Self, and Interpretability

Author
Elly van Gelderen | Arizona State University
HardboundAvailable
ISBN 9789027227607 (Eur) | EUR 110.00
ISBN 9781556199882 (USA) | USD 165.00
 
e-Book
ISBN 9789027299178 | EUR 110.00 | USD 165.00
 
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This book brings together a number of seemingly distinct phenomena in the history of English: the introduction of special reflexive pronouns (e.g. myself), the loss of verbal agreement and pro-drop, and the disappearance of morphological Case. It provides vast numbers of examples from Old and Middle English texts showing a person split between first, second, and third person pronouns. Extending an analysis by Reinhart & Reuland, the author argues that the ‘strength’ of certain pronominal features (Case, person, number) differs cross-linguistically and that parametric variation accounts for the changes in English. The framework used is Minimalist, and Interpretable and Uninterpretable features are seen as the key to explaining the change from a synthetic to an analytic language.
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 39] 2000.  xiv, 279 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“A History of English Reflexive Pronouns is an interesting and substantial contribution to the history of reflexivity in English that combines accurate philological research with contemporary theoretical syntax in a very original way. I recommend the book to everybody interested in the history of English reflexives as well as to those engaged in recent syntactic theorizing in the domain of reflexivity.”
“I very much enjoyed this book. It reads like a well-written mystery novel. We know that specially marked reflexive pronouns exist in English, but we follow the author attentively as we discover the history of their development. Upon rereading, the depth of linguistic understanding, and the thoroughness of the historical research become even more apparent. The variety of material covered, and the clarity of presentation make this book of interest to a diverse linguistic audience. Without hesitation, I would recommend it to linguists interested in current syntactic analyses of reflexive phenomena, diachronic analyses of the English pronominal system, language variation and change, and first and second language acquisition of binding.”
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2014. Preface to the first edition (2006). In A History of the English Language,  pp. ix ff. DOI logo
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2014. 1. The English language. In A History of the English Language,  pp. 1 ff. DOI logo
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Subjects

Main BIC Subject

CF: Linguistics

Main BISAC Subject

LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  00057202 | Marc record