Author Archives: Ingrid Tieken

The Grolier exhibition opening now available online

Two weeks ago, I reported on the opening of Bryan Garner’s exhibition Taming the Tongue at the Grolier Club in New York. The video of the event is now available online. So if you wish to know more about this … Continue reading

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That if a usage problem in English?

Two of my colleagues at the Leiden University Centre for Linguistics are working on the collocation of dat “that” and als “if” in sentences like Hij dacht dat als hij drukte, het luikje open zou gaan (“He thought that if he pushed, … Continue reading

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Just out!

For all those interested in the relationship between usage, usage guides and linguistic norms, this book has just come out. With warmest thanks to the editors Luisella Caon, Marion Elenbaas and Janet Grijzenhout, as well as to all contributing authors: … Continue reading

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Exhibition opens today: Bryan Garner’s “Taming the Tongue”

We all know Bryan Garner as the author of Garner’s Modern American (now English) Usage (4th ed. 2016), but not everyone may be aware of the fact that he is also a collector of 18th and 19th-century books, grammars as … Continue reading

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A new “feature” on this blog by Paul Nance

Paul Nance is a regular contributor to this blog. This time, he has written a great piece on metalinguistic comments in detective novels by Rex Stout (1886-1975). Enjoy reading it!

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Breaking the who/whom rule in English literature

For a paper I’m planning to write on the breaking of prescriptive rules by literary authors for characterisation purposes, I’m looking for specific examples of the breaking of the who/whom rule. I have several examples of them already, and have … Continue reading

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More prescriptive commentary in the Smiley trilogy

My reading of the last book of John Le Carré’s Karla trilogy, featuring George Smiley, Smiley’s People (1979), produced two more prescriptive comments. (There may have been more, but these caught my attention, possibly because both are in the HUGE … Continue reading

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George Smiley a prescriptivist?

Eighteen months or so ago I wrote a post about John le Carré, because I’d discovered that, like Kingsley Amis, Len Deighton and Ian McEwan, he too writes metalinguistic usage comments in his novels. My post then was about a … Continue reading

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A fictional biography?

My book, Describing Prescriptivism, has been out for nearly a year now, but I still run into references to usage guides in the literary literature I read that are too good not to make a note of. Or reread, as … Continue reading

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Another major publication on prescriptivism

The Bridging the Unbridgeable project may be officially closed, publications by its members continue to appear. Just now, my copy of Language Prescription: Values, Ideologies and Identity landed on our doormat, edited by Don Chapman and Jacob Rawlins. It includes … Continue reading

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