Description - Language Classification by Numbers by April McMahon
This book considers how languages have traditionally been divided into families, and asks how they should be classified in the future. It tests current theories and hypotheses, shows how new ideas can be formulated, and offers a series of demonstrations that the new techniques applied to old data can produce convincing results. It will be of great practical interest to all those concerned with the classification and diffusion of languages in fields such as comparative linguistics, archaeology, genetics, and anthropology.
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(254mm x 178mm x 22mm)
Oxford University Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
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Author Biography - April McMahon
April McMahon is Forbes Professor of English Language at the University of Edinburgh, and has previously worked at the Universities of Sheffield and Cambridge. Her main research interests are language change, language classification, phonological theory, and variation in English and Scots. She has published a number of books on these topics, including Understanding Language Change (CUP 1994), Lexical Phonology and the History of English (CUP 2000),
and Change, Chance, and Optimality (OUP 2000). She and Robert McMahon have worked together for the last ten years on interdisciplinary issues including connections between evolutionary theory, genetics, and historical linguistics. This is their first joint book.
Robert McMahon took his BSc (in Agricultural Science) and PhD (in fruit fly genetics) at Edinburgh, and since graduation has worked as a clinical molecular geneticist in Cambridge, Sheffield, and now Edinburgh. His work involves tracing inherited conditions through families, and in particular he has researched and provided genetic services for cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, inherited cancer and Osteogenesis Imperfecta (brittle bone disease). He has published a range of articles in
professional and scientific journals, and maintains a research interest in issues of human genetics and evolution, and their relationship with language.