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The first edition of this major introduction to linguistics rapidly established itself as an important student textbook, and a reference tool for those who already have some acquaintance with linguistics. This second edition has been updated and revised and includes new chapters on syntax and on current developments in generative grammar, as well as new material on the nature of language and on morphology.
This book first provides a comprehensive critical review of the analytic tools and theories of linguistics and systematically surveys major concepts in phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics. Having established the basic nature and structure of language, the final part of the book engages some of the wider issues concerning the use of language in speaking and understanding (psycholinguistics), language development in children, social aspects of language (sociolinguistics), and historical language choice.