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Background information can be found in encyclopedias, dictionaries and bibliographies. UBC Library provides access to many excellent resources in both print and online versions; a select number are listed below.
An excellent starting point for research papers. The Linguistics: A section has a number of chapters on linguistic subfields such as phonetics and phonology, syntax, as well as language policy, sign language and more. The Linguistics: B section contains, among others, chapters on morphology, semantics, sociolinguistics, language and gender, writing systems and more, with lists for further reading.
This third edition of Compendium of the World's Languages has been thoroughly revised to provide up-to-date and accurate descriptions of a wide selection of natural language systems. Scholarly, comprehensive and highly accessible.
The dictionary contains over 3,150 entries covering every aspect of this multidisciplinary field, including sociolinguistics, language theory and history, language families and major languages from all over the world, including major national/regional dialects, as well as key figures and ideas in linguistics.
Containing over 500 alphabetically arranged entries and an expansive glossary by a team of international scholars, the Encyclopedia of Linguistics explores the varied perspectives, figures, and methodologies that make up the field.
Entries of up to four thousand words survey the major fields of study, while shorter entries treat specific topics, define and discuss technical terms and provide sketches of the careers of important scholars in the history of linguistics. A major emphasis of the work is its extensive coverage of languages from all corners of the world.
Eighty ideas that have shaped the study of language up to the present day. Each one includes a brief description of the idea, an account of its development, and an analysis of its impact on the field of language study.
This new, thoroughly revised edition incorporates major developments in language study which have taken place since the mid 1990s. Two main new areas have been added: the rise of electronic communication in all its current forms from email to texting, and the crisis affecting the world's languages, of which half are thought to be seriously endangered.
This volume features over 50 of the world's languages and language families chosen by number of speakers, their role as official languages, and their cultural and historical importance. Chapters provide information on both grammatical features and language's history and cultural role.
Chapters in this volume look at approaches to ergativity within generative, typological, and functional paradigms, as well as approaches to the core morphosyntactic building blocks of an ergative construction and related constructions. Case studies and examples from a wide variety of languages are represented.
This book is designed to serve as a reference work and in-depth introduction to Austronesian languages, providing a source of basic information for linguists and other professionals concerned with this area.
This comprehensive volume presents grammatical analyses of individual Bantu languages, comparative studies of their main phonetic, phonological and grammatical characteristics and overview chapters on their history and classification.
This second edition has been thoroughly revised to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date account of the modern Celtic languages and their current sociolinguistic status along with complete descriptions of the historical languages.
This authoritative reference source provides a unique description of Dravidian languages, covering their grammatical structure and historical development, plus sociolinguistic features. New to this edition are chapters on Beṭṭa Kur̲umba, Kuṛux, Kūvi and Malayāḷam.
This volume is part of the Smithsonian Institution’s Handbook of North American Indians series. It provides basic reference work on Native languages of North America, their characteristics and uses, their historical relationships, and the history of research on these languages.
Each chapter on the individual languages in this volume covers the phonology, morphology and syntax of the language and its writing system, and gives the historical background and information concerning the geography of the language and the number of its speakers.
This comprehensive, single-volume tome presents in-depth discussions on the historical development and specialized linguistic features of the individual languages and language subgroups within the Indo-European language family.
Drawing together a distinguished group of international experts, with much of the material taken from data collected by the authors' own field work, this volume presents descriptive, typological, historical-comparative and sociolinguistic material on Khoesan.
The Languages of Japan and Korea provides detailed descriptions of the major varieties of languages in the region, both modern and pre-modern, within a common format, producing a long-needed introductory reference source.
An authoritative survey of the several hundred languages indigenous to North America. Part I of the book provides an overview of structural features. Part II catalogues the languages by family, listing the location of each language, its genetic affiliation, number of speakers, major published literature, and structural highlights.
The Mayan Languages presents a comprehensive survey of the language family associated with the Classic Mayan civilization (AD 200-900), a family whose individual languages are still spoken today by at least six million indigenous Maya in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras.
This volume is the first comprehensive treatment of the Mongolic languages in English, written by an international team of specialists. For general linguistic theory, the Mongolic languages offer interesting insights to problems of areal typology and structural change.
This new volume presents an overview of the Oceanic subgroup of the Austronesian languages, spread across a region embracing eastern Indonesia, Melanesia, Polynesia, and Micronesia. It provides sufficient phonological and grammatical data to give typologists and comparativists a good idea of the nature of these languages.
Comprehensive offering with a detailed structural examination of all individual Romance varieties and Romance-speaking areas, including standard, non-standard, dialectal and regional varieties of the Old and New Worlds.
This book discusses nine Romance languages in context of their common Latin origins and then in individual studies. The final chapter is devoted to Romance-based Creole languages, a genuine innovation in a work of this kind.
The Semitic Languages presents a comprehensive survey of the individual languages and language clusters within this language family, from their origins in antiquity to their present-day forms. This second edition has been fully revised, with new chapters and a wealth of additional material.
Now in its second edition and fully updated to include new research, The Sino-Tibetan Languages includes overview articles on individual languages, with an emphasis on the less commonly described languages, as well as descriptions and comments on the subgroups in which they occur.
Providing chapter-length descriptions of each of the modern Slavonic languages, as well as the extinct ones, this book describes their social context, phonology, sychronic morphology, vocabulary and syntactic properties.
The Turkic Languages is a reference book which brings together detailed discussions of the historical development and specialized linguistic structures and features of the languages in the Turkic family. This thoroughly revised edition reflects ongoing developments in the languages themselves and our enhanced understanding of relations and patterns of influence between them.
This book provides a unique, up-to-date survey of individual Uralic languages and sub-groupings from Finnish to Selkup. The 18 language chapters are similarly structured and designed for comparative study.