LoveReading

Becoming a member of the LoveReading community is free.

No catches, no fine print just unadulterated book loving, with your favourite books saved to your own digital bookshelf.

New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop Plus lots lots more…

Find out more

Language: history & general works

See below for a selection of the latest books from Language: history & general works category. Presented with a red border are the Language: history & general works books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Language: history & general works books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!

A Place For Everything

A Place For Everything

Author: Judith Flanders Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/02/2021

'Marvellous . . . I read it with astonished delight..It is equally scholarly and entertaining.' Jan Morris 'Delightfully quirky and compelling' The Times One we've learned it as children few of us think much of the alphabet and its familiar sing-song order. And yet the order if the alphabet, that simple knowledge that we take for granted, plays a major role in our adult lives. From the school register to the telephone book, from dictionaries and encyclopaedias to library shelves, our lives are ordered from A to Z. Long before Google searches, this magical system of organisation gave us the ability to sift through centuries of thought, knowledge and literature, allowing us to sort, to file, and to find the information we have, and to locate the information we need. Acclaimed historian Judith Flanders draws our attention to both the neglected ubiquity of the alphabet and the long, complex history of its rise to prominence. For, while the order of the alphabet itself became fixed very soon after letters were first invented, their ability to sort and store and organize proved far less obvious. To many of our forebears, the idea of of organising things by the random chance of the alphabet rather than by established systems of hierarchy or typology lay somewhere between unthinkable and disrespectful. In A Place for Everything, Judith Flanders fascinatingly lays out the gradual triumph of alphabetical order, from its possible earliest days as a sorting tool in the Great Library of Alexandria in the third century BCE, to its current decline in prominence in our digital age of Wikipedia and Google. Along the way, the reader is enlightened and entertained with a wonderful cast of unknown facts, characters and stories from the great collector Robert Cotton, who denominated his manuscripts with the names of the busts of the Roman emperors surmounting his book cases, to the unassuming sixteenth-century London bookseller who ushered in a revolution by listing his authors by 'sirname' first.

Mother Tongue

Mother Tongue

Author: Michael Witzel Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/01/2021

Journal of the Association for the Study of Language in Prehistory.

Languages Are Good For Us

Languages Are Good For Us

Author: Sophie Hardach Format: Hardback Release Date: 07/01/2021

A celebration of the huge linguistic diversity that is open to all of us at birth, and that has inspired and fascinated humans since the invention of speech. The acclaimed novelist Sophie Hardach - a German native who writes in English - explores languages, and multilingualism, as an expression of human creativity and identity, and a way to connect in an often fractured world - a necessary and important pursuit in these politically divided times. The book's chapters roughly follow the trajectory of a human life, tracing our relationship with language from the first muffled sounds we hear in the womb, to the comfort and companionship it can provide in old age. The author weaves together her own experiences of language as the mother of a multilingual child and explores the science and history of speech. Languages Are Good For Us offers a unique perspective on a subject that affects us all.

Languages Are Good For Us

Languages Are Good For Us

Author: Sophie Hardach Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/01/2021

A celebration of the huge linguistic diversity that is open to all of us at birth, and that has inspired and fascinated humans since the invention of speech. The acclaimed novelist Sophie Hardach - a German native who writes in English - explores languages, and multilingualism, as an expression of human creativity and identity, and a way to connect in an often fractured world - a necessary and important pursuit in these politically divided times. The book's chapters roughly follow the trajectory of a human life, tracing our relationship with language from the first muffled sounds we hear in the womb, to the comfort and companionship it can provide in old age. The author weaves together her own experiences of language as the mother of a multilingual child and explores the science and history of speech. Languages Are Good For Us offers a unique perspective on a subject that affects us all.

A History of the English Language

A History of the English Language

Author: Michael Adams, Anne Curzan Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/01/2021

A History of the English Language

A History of the English Language

Author: Michael Adams, Anne Curzan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/01/2021

Approaches to Specialized Genres

Approaches to Specialized Genres

Author: Kathy Ling (Shanghai Jiaotong University, China) LIN Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/12/2020

Approaches to Specialized Genres provides a timely update of the field of genre studies, with 14 cutting-edge contributions split into five sections using and integrating an exceptionally wide variety of methods and perspectives (such as ESP genre research, corpus linguistics, systemic functional linguistics, ethnographic and multimodal research) to analyse genres in written, spoken, visual and auditory modes across a multiplicity of pedagogic, professional and digital settings. It highlights and illustrates the growing trend of a multiperspective and inter-theoretic approach to genre studies and demonstrates how such methodological rigour can extend our knowledge of language, in general, and genres, in particular. It also examines a rich variety of underexplored genres such as the digital genre of synchronous videoconferencing, instructional slides, video ads, engineers' training log book entries, the narrative story genres, fundraising letters and retraction notices. It demonstrates not only the prominent value of genre research, but wide applications of genre knowledge in various educational and professional domains. The book brings together experts spreading across the world, including countries in South-East Asia, Europe, America, West Africa and South America. Accordingly, it will appeal to readers of diversified socio-cultural backgrounds working in all the aforementioned inter-related fields of applied linguistics and communication studies.

Rooted

Rooted

Author: Dr Amanda Laugesen Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/11/2020

Bugger, rooted, bloody oath... What is it about Australians and swearing? We've got an international reputation for using bad language and letting rip with a choice swear word or two. From the defiant curses of the convicts to the humour of Kath & Kim, Amanda Laugesen, Chief Editor of the Australian National Dictionary, takes us on an engrossing journey through the tumultuous history of Australia's bad language. Bad language has been used in all sort of ways in our history: to defy authority, as a form of liberation and subversion, and as a source of humour and creativity. It has also been used to oppress and punish, notably Indigenous Australians and women. Revealing the fundamental tensions, conflicts, preoccupations and anxieties that have shaped our past and continue to shape our present, the story of bad language is a story about what it means to be Australian. 'This is an engrossing social history - a bloody beauty - from one of our leading experts on Australian English.' - Frank Bongiorno 'Australia is built on blood, sweat and swears. Digging up the dirt, Amanda Laugesen finds out why, with flair, ferocity and other f-words.' - David Astle 'Laugesen's history of bad language in Australia, provides a new and instructive gateway to understanding Australian culture and identity.' - Bruce Moore 'In Rooted, Amanda Laugesen proves that so-called bad language makes for some of the most inventive, descriptive and even character-defining in the world.' - Jonathon Green

The Welsh Language in Cardiff

The Welsh Language in Cardiff

Author: Owen John Thomas Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/11/2020

El espanol de Cataluna en los medios de comunicacion

El espanol de Cataluna en los medios de comunicacion

Author: Dolors Poch Olive Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 11/11/2020

Alphabetical

Alphabetical

Author: Michael Rosen Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/11/2020

From minding your Ps and Qs to wondering why X should mark the spot, Alphabetical is a book for everyone who loves words and language. Whether it's how letters are arranged on keyboards or Viking runes, textspeak or zip codes, this book will change the way you think about letters for ever. How on Earth did we fix upon our twenty-six letters, what do they really mean, and how did we come to write them down in the first place? Michael Rosen takes you on an unforgettable adventure through the history of the alphabet in twenty-six vivid chapters, fizzing with personal anecdotes and fascinating facts. Starting with the mysterious Phoenicians and how sounds first came to be written down, he races on to show how nonsense poems work, pins down the strange story of OK, traces our seven lost letters and tackles the tyranny of spelling, among many, many other things. His heroes of the alphabet range from Edward Lear to Phyllis Pearsall (the inventor of the A-Z), and from the two scribes of Beowulf to rappers. Each chapter takes on a different subject - codes, umlauts or the writing of dictionaries. Rosen's enthusiasm for letters positively leaps off the page, whether it's the story of his life told through the typewriters he's owned or a chapter on jokes written in a string of gags and word games. So if you ever wondered why Hawaiian only has a thirteen-letter alphabet or how exactly to write down the sound of a wild raspberry, read on . . .

Spellbound

Spellbound

Author: Robbins Burling Format: Hardback Release Date: 31/10/2020

Spellbound considers the history of English spelling and provides suggestions for modern day reform of its irregularities.The first half of the book reviews the history of English spelling and the reasons for the many irregularities of our modern language. The author argues that the irregular spelling of English contributes seriously to the high rate of illiteracy in the English speaking world. He then reviews some of the many attempts to reform the spelling of other languages, some of which were successful and others not. During the first half of the 20th century there was a flurry of interest in reforms for English but since then reform has been little more than the object of humor. Spellbound considers the reasons for this opposition to reform. The book then turns to current proposals for the reform of English. It describes the criteria that should govern the choice among alternative reforms and considers in detail the relatively easily reformed consonants and the much more difficult vowels. Special attention is given to ways of designing a spelling that is equally suitable for the many and diverse dialects of spoken English.While the author recognises that a unified spelling could not be perfect for any single dialect, he argues that it could be very much better than our present spelling for all dialects. Spellbound concludes by looking at possible ways by which reforms might be brought about today.