Author Archives: Viktorija Kostadinova

What are your thoughts on the Microsoft grammar and style checker?

In the past two years, we’ve been publishing a series of interactive features in the journal English Today as a way to engage more readers in issues of interest to our research project. (Past features can also be found on … Continue reading

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Sitcoms and language humour

Those who are familiar with Frasier would certainly recall that language was one of the things Frasier and Niles were nitpicky about. In one episode, Frasier manages to irritate a caller by commenting on his inappropriate use of literally: “I’m sorry Doug, … Continue reading

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Literally, too big a fuss about nothing – the latest English Today interactive feature

The sixth installment in the Bridging the Unbridgeable series of interactive features was published in the June 2015 issue of the English Today journal. In this feature, we ask readers to contribute to investigating the issue of the non-literal, intensifier use of … Continue reading

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Fragment (consider revising)

We’ve all been there. You are writing (what you think is) a perfectly good sentence in a Word document when, suddenly, the MS Word grammar checker tells you that you should consider revising the ‘fragment’, because something is wrong. Very … Continue reading

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Bridging the Unbridgeable Lunch Lecture on ELAN

The next Bridging the Unbridgeable lunch lecture will take place on 21 October 2014, at 13:00 in Lipsius 308. During this session Amanda Delgado Galvan, a PhD candidate at LUCL, will introduce the language annotation tool ELAN and show how it … Continue reading

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A parody within a parody?

The latest prescriptive lesson on correct grammar doesn’t come from a usage guide or a grammar blog. It comes from “Weird Al” Yankovic’s latest album called “Mandatory Fun” in the form of a parody of Robin Thicke’s popular song “Blurred Lines”. … Continue reading

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Something must have went on

The first time I read about have went as a usage problem was in the context of what 18th century prescriptivists wrote about it: Robert Lowth and Noah Webster, two 18th (and, in the case of Webster, 19th) century grammarians, both … Continue reading

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Give me some data!

Researching language in its social context inevitably includes collecting considerable amounts of data. As I move closer to the fieldwork period of my research project, I have set up a new blog to help me get in touch with (primarily) … Continue reading

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Spellergies, or the Rise of the Usage Problem

Over the last couple of years I have been plagued with an unusual allergy, and to this day I have no idea what the cause might be. I have been tested for pollen, dust mites, particular types of food groups, … Continue reading

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English Language Usage on Facebook – Survey

In the beginning of the last century, some notable linguists and scholars, George Philip Krapp, Sterling Leonard, and Fred Walcott, to name a few, expressed their cogent views on the relativity of linguistic correctness. Correct language is not something absolute, … Continue reading

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