Kinda Sorta Linguistic Research

If you ever say “kinda” or “sorta”, there’s a good chance you’ve been using ‘Pragmatic Halos’ without even knowing about it. Linguistically speaking, ‘Pragmatic Halos’ can include phrases that are not strictly true (but that are neither lies or mistakes) and which are a normal part of honest, error-free discourse. “It is a truism that […]

So students use slang?

Do students at the University of Leicester use slang, and do they know they do? Or rather, did they, when they were students during the period 2004-2011? Those are among the questions driving this study: “Slang Used by Students at the University of Leicester (2004–11),” Julie Coleman, in Global English Slang, pp. 61-73. Routledge, 2014. […]

Professor D’Arcy on like a contemporary vernacular

“The selective attention paid to the language of adolescents has led to the enduring belief that young people are ruining the language and that, as a consequence, the language is degenerating. One feature of contemporary vernaculars that is often held up as exemplification of these ideological principles is like, the ‘much-deplored interjection… that peppers the […]

SIL e-Books – the bees’ knees for rhyming jingles (linguistics study)

If you’re after in-depth information about hanky panky, tittle tattle, or even argy bargy then where better to look than the pages of SIL e-Books ? In particular, chapter 16 of ‘A Mosaic of languages and cultures: studies celebrating the career of Karl J. Franklin*‘ – ‘Helter skelter and ñugl ñagl: English and Kalam Rhyming […]

Umpteen reflections on Indefinite Hyperbolic Numerals

With apologies to our readers who might already know, Indefinite Hyperbolic Numerals* (IHNs) are words like zillion, jillion, and umpteen. Or, to be exact : “Indefinite hyperbolic numerals (IHN) are words that (1) resemble numerals morphologically, and (2) act as numerals morphosyntactically within numeral phrases, yet (3) whose direct numerical referent remains indefinite.” For an […]