Category Archives: usage features

Just out (surprise)

Today, we found out that our article “Prescriptive attitudes to English” is published, that it has been out for two months already. Thanks, Carmen, for tweeting about it, or I wouldn’t have known. Still, I’m really pleased, and expect Carmen … Continue reading

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Grammar Badgers

A few weeks ago, I gave a guest lecture through Skype for students at the University of Wisconsin. Interesting experience, and fantastic students they were. Their teacher, Anja Wanner, told me they were busy preparing an outreach project (obligatory at … Continue reading

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Microsoft Word, or: what is wrong with prescriptivism?

I’m reading through Carmen Ebner’s PhD thesis one more time (defense coming up soon!), and it strikes me in my own writings, too, every time – the red squiggles under prescriptivism, as in the header to this post. It makes … Continue reading

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TIME Magazine – a style guide?

I’d like to know if TIME Magazine employs a style guide. The answer is of course “yes”, but do they have style guide of their own? And is it publicly available? In particular, I’d like to be able to see … Continue reading

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A/an homage?

“A homage to P.G. Wodehouse” is the subtitle of Sebastian Faulks‘s novel Jeeves and the Wedding Bells (2013). I picked up the book in our local library because, inspired by my colleague’s earlier query about a peculiarity in Wodehouse’s language, I went … Continue reading

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The “new” like and non-native speakers of English

Earlier this summer, Susan de Smit finished her BA thesis in English here at Leiden on the use of “the new like” by native as well as non-native speakers of English. If you are interested in the results of her … Continue reading

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“Use the active voice” – full stop

Here is one example of the effect which following up on Strunk and White’s linguistic advice may have (see last week’s blog post on this): He spent a considerable portion of 1802 in Nellore collecting manuscripts, interviewing local Brahmins whom … Continue reading

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