Terence's Reviews > Limits of Language: Almost Everything You Didn't Know You Didn't Know about Language and Languages

Limits of Language by Mikael Parkvall
Rate this book
Clear rating

by
1019174
's review
Jan 14, 11

bookshelves: science-general, science-language-linguistics, reference-works
Read in January, 2011, read count: 1

This book was a bit of a disappointment: Not quite what I was expecting. As the author himself notes in his introduction, it's a Guiness Book of World Records-like compilation of factoids about language and linguistics. There's some interesting "stuff" but there's also a lot of "stuff" that's not, and most of the entries are frustratingly short.

And - the copy editor in me froths - the typos are legion. The most egregious pops up on page 320 of my edition where the entry "Person Marking on Nouns" is repeated verbatim. The only difference being that the non-English words in the second entry are italicized.

And and - the typesetting can be problematic. A lot of entriesgetscruncheddownlikethis or spread out like this. It looks like someone threw the book together on a version of PageMaker.
1 like · likeflag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Limits of Language.
sign in »

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

dateDown_arrow    newest »

message 1: by Curtiss (new)

Curtiss I recomend Steven R. Pinker's "Words and Rules" and "The Language Instinct" for an insightful look at the development of language and at how language and mind interact.

John McWhorter's "Losing the Race:" is also good for a look at how cultural constraints on African-American language acquisition may have sabotaged and undermined their advancement.


Terence Curtiss wrote: "I recomend Steven R. Pinker's "Words and Rules" and "The Language Instinct" for an insightful look at the development of language and at how language and mind interact.

John McWhorter's "Losing ..."


Thanks for the recs - I think I've got McWhorter on my wishlist somewhere, and I really should try to read Pinker's stuff :-)


back to top