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A  Look  At  Language

1679 drawing of the Tower of Babel by Athanasius Kircher, SJ [1602-80]              short essay

books
from 1800
from 2000
from 2015

alphabets, fonts, glyphs
& punctuation

movies & TV

other media

links


"History does not merely touch on language, but takes place in it."
— philosopher Theodor W. Adorno [1903-69]

"Words are like money. There is nothing so useless, except when put to use."
Dr. Samuel Johnson [1709-84]

"Language is not just a creation of humanity. It is humanity."  — biologist Edward O. Wilson


          The myth of the Tower of Babel originated in the Middle East and was recorded in the Jewish Bible (Genesis 11:1-9) and in the Muslim Qur'an [VIIth Century]. The basic tale is that humans attempt to build a tower tall enough to reach the heavens; God is offended so he makes the people speak in different languages; the people become confused and cannot communicate, and work on the tower halts. (The Bible does not name the location, but tradition has the tower being built in the city of Babel or Babil.)

          m o r e
          t e x t
          h e r e

general 'language' entry at Wikipedia

Searching Amazon for books on the keyword 'language' returns 3.4 million titles, which list is of no use; search on keyword 'language arts' reduces the return to 475,200 titles, but that is still quite useless. So this page derives from titles cut from the 'Books To Ponder' Pages and then coding further books on this topic as they are found . . .


Books  On  The  Subject

Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue 1811 book by Francis Grose   "Dictionary of The Vulgar Tongue: A Dictionary of Buckish Slang, University Wit, and Pickpocket Eloquence" [1811 bestseller] by Capt. Francis Grose
138-page Kindle Edition from Amazon Digital Services [5/2012] for FREE {sic}
388-page Kindle Edition from Amazon Digital Services [5/2017] for 99¢ {sic}
248-page CreateSpace 9x6 pb [3/2012] for $7.90
278-page CreateSpace 10x7 pb [3/2012] for $7.95
288-page Hesperus Press 8½x5½ hardcover [2/2014] for $17.95
294-page Palala Press 9¼x6 hardcover [11/2015] for $25.95

Farmer and Henley's 1890 Slang and Its Analogues dictionary  "Farmer and Henley's Slang and Its Analogues, Past and Present" [1890]
by John Stephen Farmer & William Ernest Henley

subtitle: A Dictionary, Historical and Comparative, of The Heterodox Speech of All Classes of Society For More Than Three Hundred Years
550-page Kindle Edition from Amazon Digital Services [8/2015] for 99¢ {sic}
Forgotten Books 9x6 pb [4/2010] for $16.00
Palala Press 9&fracd14x6 hardcover [5/2016] for $27.95

Cowboy Lingo 1936 book by Ramon F. Adams  "Cowboy Lingo: A Dictionary of The Slack-jaw Words and Whangdoodle Ways of The American West" [orig 1936, rev 2000]
by Ramon F. Adams, Foreword by Elmer Kelton

Mariner Books 8¼x5½ pb [11/2000] for $13.81
Mariner Books 8¼x5½ pb [11/2000] out of print/used
Houghton Mifflin hardcover [1936] out of print/used
Hog On Ice 1948 book by Charles Earle Funk  "A Hog On Ice and Other Curious Expressions" [1948]
by Charles Earle Funk, Drawings by Tom Funk

'The origin & development of the pungent & colorful phrases [that] we all use'
Wm. Morrow 8x5¼ pb [10/2002] for $11.32
HarperColophon 8x5¼ pb [6/85] out of print/100+ used
Warner Books mass pb [9/72] out of print/40+ used
Harper & Row 8½x6 hardcover [3/48] out of print/used
Thereby Hangs A Tale 1950 book by Charles Earle Funk  "Thereby Hangs A Tale: Hundreds of Stories of Curious Word Origins" [1950]
by Charles Earle Funk

ABRIDGED Kindle Edition from Mysore Press [4/2013] for $6.15
Wm. Morrow 8x5¼ pb [10/2002] for $13.99
Warner Paperback Library mass pb [1972] out of print/30+ used
Warner Books mass pb [1972] out of print/used
Harper & Brothers hardcover [1950] out of print/used
Harper & Brothers 8¼x6 hardcover [1950] out of print/used
Heavens to Betsy 1955 book by Charles Earle Funk  'Heavens To Betsy and Other Curious Sayings" [1955]
by Charles Earle Funk, Drawings by Tom Funk

"How more than 400 colorful & familiar expressions originated and developed'
HarperPerennial 8x5¼ pb [10/2002] for $12.95
Warner Books mass pb [1972] out of print/used
HarperPerennial 8x6 pb [2/87] out of print/90+ used
Harper & Brothers hardcover [1955] out of print/used
Horsefeathers 1958 book by Charles Earle Funk  "Horsefeathers and Other Curious Words" [1958]
by Charles Earle Funk & Charles Earle Funk Jr., Drawings by Tom Funk

Wm. Morrow 8x5¼ pb [10/2002] for $12.99
HarperReference 8x5¼ pb [2/87] out of print/60+ used
Harper 8x5¼ hardcover [9/94] out of print/50+ used
Harper 8¼x5¾ hardcover [1958] out of print/used
The Language Book by Franklin Folsom  "The Language Book: From Tom Toms To Telstar" [1963]
by Franklin Folsom, Illustrated by John Hull & Tran Hawicke

"The whole dramatic story of language: What it is . . . How it began . . . How it changes"
Grosset & Dunlap 11x8½ hardcover [1963] out of print/used
Grosset & Dunlap 10½x8¼ hardcover [1963] out of print/used
Dictionary of Cliches book by Eric Partridge  "A Dictionary of Cliches" [1969]
by Eric Partridge

Routledge 7¼x4¾ pb [1978] out of print/used
Routledge & Kegan Paul, PLC 7½x5 hardcover [1969] out of print/used
Languages of the World book by Kenneth Katzner  "The Languages of The World, 3rd Edition" [orig 1977] by Kenneth Katzner
Kindle Edition from Routledge [2002 3rd edition] buy $57.99, rent for $32.98
Routledge 9¼x6 pb [3/2002] for $60.05
Routledge 9½x6½ hardcover [3/2002] for $155.00 {sic}
Dictionary of Cliches book by James Rogers  "The Dictionary of Cliches: If You Wonder About The Origins of All Those Old Saws – From First Blush To Bite The Dust – You'll Find This Book The Cat's Meow!" [1986] by James Rogers
"Not to beat around the bush, or hedge the bet, this is a must-read for every Tom, Dick, and Harry under the sun!" — People Magazine
Ballantine Books mass pb [12/86] for $7.55
Barnes & Noble Books 8¼x5¾ hardcover [2001] out of print/80+ used
Gramercy 9¼x6 hardcover [2/92] out of print/60+ used
Dinkum Dictionary Guide To Aussie English book by Lenie 'Midge' Johansen  "The Dinkum Dictionary: A Ripper Guide To Aussie English" [1988]
by Lenie 'Midge' Johansen

Lifetime Distributors 8½x5½ pb [5/94] out of print/used
Lifetime Distributors 8½x5½ pb [5/94] out of print/used
Penguin Australia, Ltd. 8¼x5½ pb [1/92] out of print/used
Penguin Australia, Ltd. hardcover [6/91] out of print/used
The Story of English book by Robert McCrum, Robert MacNeil & William Cran  "The Story of English" [intl. bestseller 1989]
by Robert McCrum, Robert MacNeil & William Cran

Penguin 3rd edition 8x5¼ pb [12/2002] for $11.56
Faber & Faber 8¼x5¼ library hardcover [1989] for $26.00

"The Story of English" TV miniseries [1986] is below

Mother Tongue / English book by Bill Bryson  "The Mother Tongue: English and How It Got That Way" [1990]
by Bill Bryson

Kindle Edition from William Morrow/HarperCollins [6/2015] for $10.99
William Morrow 8x5¼ pb [6/90] for $10.40
William Morrow 8½x5¼ pb [6/90] out of print/used
Paw Prints Reprint 8x5¼ library hardcover [6/2008] out of print/used
William Morrow 9½x6 hardcover [6/90] out of print/60+ used
Dinkum Dictionary of Aussie English book  "The Dinkum Dictionary of Aussie English" [1990]
Photographs by Gary Lewis, Illustrated by Dennis Miller

Peter Antill-Rose & Assocs. 9x6½ hardcover [1991] out of print/used
Peter Antill-Rose & Assocs. 8¾x6 hardcover [1990] out of print/used
Brewer's Dictionary of 20th Century Phrase & Fable book  "Brewer's Dictionary of Twentieth Century Phrase and Fable" [1991]
Weidenfeld Nicolson Illustrated 3rd edition 9¼x6 hardcover [12/96] out of print/used
Weidenfeld Nicolson Illustrated 3rd edition 9¼x6 hardcover [12/96] out of print/used
Weidenfeld Nicolson Illustrated 9x6½ hardcover [10/91] out of print/used
Weidenfeld Nicolson Illustrated 9x6½ hardcover [10/91] out of print/used
Dictionary of Clichés book by Christine Ammer  "Have A Nice Day - No Problem!: A Dictionary of Clichés" [1992]
by Christine Ammer

Plume Wordwatchers 7x5 pb [7/93] out of print/used
Dutton Adult 9¼x6½ hardcover [1/92] out of print/many used
Dutton Adult 9¼x6½ hardcover [1/92] out of print/used
Word Origins books by Wilfred Funk  "Word Origins: An Exploration and History of Words and Language" [1992]
by Wilfred Funk

Random House Value Publng 9x6¼ hardcover [8/92] out of print/100+ used
Bell Publng 9x6 hardcover [8/92] out of print/100+ used
Bell Publng 9x6 hardcover [8/92] out of print/used
"Word Origins and Their Romantic Stories" [1950] by Wilfred Funk
Bell Publng 9x6 hardcover [1978] out of print/used
Bell Publng 8x5¾ hardcover [1950] out of print/40+ used
Oxford Companion to the English Language book by Tom McArthur  
"The Oxford Companion To The English Language" [1992]
by Tom McArthur

Kindle Edition from Oxford Univ Press [2005 edition] 'Concise' Edition for $10.99
Oxford Univ Press 9½x6½ pb [9/92] out of print/200+ used
Oxford Univ Press 'Concise' Edition 7¾x5 hardcover [10/98] out of print/used
2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings and Expressions book by Charles Earle Funk  "2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings, and Expressions From White Elephants To A Song & Dance" [1993] by Charles Earle Funk, Drawings by Tom Funk
comprised of the four Charles Funk books just above
Galahad 9¼x6¼ hardcover [9/93] out of print/100+ used
Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang book by Jonathan E. Lighter  "Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang" [1994]
by Jonathan E. Lighter

After publishing two volumes, Random House halted further plans; Oxford University Press announced in 2003 that it would publish the two remaining volumes - which has not happened as-of 2017
Volume 1: A-G: Random House Reference 11x9 pb [6/94] out of print/used
Volume 1: A-G: Random House Reference 11¼x8¾ hardcover [6/94] for $43.95
Volume 1: A-G: Random House Reference 11¼x8¾ hardcover [6/94] out of print/used
Volume 2: H-O: Random House Reference 11¼x9 hardcover [9/97] out of print/40+ used
Volume 3: P-S" [not yet published?] - not available at Amazon (2017)
Volume 4: T-Z" [not yet published?] - not available at Amazon (2017)
Penguin Book of Australian Slang by Lenie 'Midge' Johansen  
"The Penguin Book of Australian Slang: A Dinkum Guide To Oz English" [1996]
by Lenie 'Midge' Johansen

Penguin Books 7¾x5 pb [1996] out of print/used
Claremont 9x6½ hardcover [3/96] out of print/used
The Atlas of Languages book from Facts On File  "The Atlas of Languages: The Origin and Development of Languages Throughout The World" [1996]
by Bernard Comrie, Stephen Matthews & Maria Polinsky

Facts On File 11¾x9 hardcover [rev 5/2003] out of print/used
Facts On File 12x9 hardcover [10/96] out of print/many used
Clichés Explored and Explained books by Betty Kirkpatrick  "Clichés: Over 1,500 Phrases Explored and Explained" [1997]
by Betty Kirkpatrick

St. Martin's Griffin 8½x5½ pb [1/99] for $15.01
St. Martin's Press 8½x5¾ hardcover [6/97] out of print/used
"Bloomsbury Dictionary of Clichés: Over 1,300 Familiar Phrases Explored and Explained" [1995] by E.M. 'Betty' Kirkpatrick
Bloomsbury 7½x5 pb [9/2001] out of print/used

Cassell's Dictionary of Slang book by Jonathon Green  "Cassell's Dictionary of Slang: A Major New Edition of The Market-Leading Dictionary of Slang" [1998] by Jonathon Green
Cassell 2nd edition 9½x7 hardcover [3/2006] out of print/many used
Cassell 2nd edition 9½x7 hardcover [3/2006] out of print/used
Cassell 9x6¾ pb [12/2000] out of print/used
Cassell 9½x7¼ hardcover [1999] out of print/used
Oxford Dictionary of Slang book compiled by John Ayto  
"The Oxford Dictionary of Slang" [1999] Compiled by John Ayto
'A unique topic-by-topic review of English slang'
Oxford Univ Press 9¼x6¼ hardcover [2/99] out of print/used
Words & Rules book by Steven Pinker  "Words and Rules: The Ingredients of Language" [1999]
by Steven Pinker

Harper Perennial 8x5¼ pb [1/2000] for $10.50
Perseus/Basic 9½x6½ hardcover [10/99] for $4.98
New Dinkum Aussie Dictionary book by R. Beckett  "The New Dinkum Aussie Dictionary [2000] by R. Beckett
New Holland Publrs 8¼x5½ pb [8/2000] out of print/many used
New Holland Publrs 8¼x5½ pb [8/2000] out of print/used
New Holland Publrs 8¼x5½ pb [8/2000] out of print/used
The Word Detective book by Evan Morris  "The Word Detective: Solving The Mysteries Behind Those Pesky Words and Phrases" [2000] by Evan Morris
150 essays from his newspaper and-or weblog columns
Plume 7x5½ pb [10/2001] out of print/used
Algonquin Books 7¼x6 hardcover [9/2000] out of print/80+ used
Power of Babel / Natural History of Language book by John McWhorter  "The Power of Babel: A Natural History of Language" [2002]
by John McWhorter

HarperPerennial pb [1/2003] for $12.47
HarperPerennial pb [1/2003] out of print/used
W.H. Freeman 9½x6¼ hardcover [1/2002] out of print/60+ used
Latin For Dummies book by Clifford A. Hull, Steven R. Perkins & Tracy Barr  "Latin For Dummies: A Reference For The Rest of Us!" [2002]
by Clifford A. Hull, Steven R. Perkins & Tracy Barr

Kindle Edition from For Dummies Books [6/2011] for $10.99
For Dummies Books 9¼x7½ pb [1/2002] for $15.65
For Dummies Books 9¼x7½ pb [1/2002] out of print/used
For Dummies Books 9¼x7½ pb [1/2002] out of print/used
For Dummies Books 9¼x7½ pb [1/2002] out of print/used

Making Whoopee book by Evan Morris  "Making Whoopee: Words of Love For Lovers of Words" [2004]
by Evan Morris

more essays from his newspaper and-or weblog columns
Algonquin Books 7¼x5¾ hardcover [1/2004] for $15.95
Why Language Matters for Theory of Mind book edited by Janet Wilde Astington & Jodie A. Baird  "Why Language Matters For Theory of Mind" [2005]
Edited by Janet Wilde Astington & Jodie A. Baird

Oxford Univ Press 9¼x6¼ hardcover [3/2005] for $75.00 {sic}
Oxford Dictionary of American Political Slang book edited by Grant Barrett  "The Oxford Dictionary of American Political Slang" [2006]
Edited by Grant Barrett, Introduction by James Carville & Mary Matalin

Kindle Edition from Oxford Univ Press [2006 edition] for $17.99
Oxford Univ Press 7½x5 pb [4/2006] for $18.95
Language Matters book by Laurie Bauer, Janet Holmes & Paul Warren  "Language Matters" [2006]
by Laurie Bauer, Janet Holmes & Paul Warren

Palgrave 9¼x6¼ pb [6/2006] for $36.00
Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable book by Ebenezer Cobham Brewer   "Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable" [orig 1870, rev 2006]
by E. Cobham Brewer [1810-97]

Harper Reference 14th edition 9½x6 pb [1992] out of print/used
Collins Reference 17th edition 9¼x7¼ hardcover [8/2006] out of print/used
HarperCollins 16th edition 10x7 hardcover [5/2000] out of print/many used
Complete Idiot's Guide To Learning Latin book by Natalie Harwood  "The Complete Idiot's Guide To Learning Latin" [2006]
by Natalie Harwood

Kindle Edition from Alpha Books/Penguin Group [8/2006] for $11.99
Alpha Books 3rd edition 9x7¼ pb [8/2006] for $17.35
Inventing English book by Seth Lerer  "Inventing English: A Portable History of The Language" [2007]
by Seth Lerer

Kindle Edition from Columbia Univ Press [rev 8/2015] for $9.99
Columbia Univ Press 9x6 pb [rev 8/2015] for $13.71
Columbia Univ Press 9¼x6½ hardcover [4/2007] for $20.10
F.U.B.A.R. Soldier Slang of World War II book by Gordon L. Rottman  "F.U.B.A.R. (F***ed Up Beyond All Recognition): Soldier Slang of World War II" [2007] by Gordon L. Rottman
Kindle Edition from Osprey Publng [3/2011] for $7.49
Osprey Publng 7¼x4¾ pb [10/2009] out of print/many used
Osprey Publng 7¼x4¾ hardcover [3/2010] out of print/40+ used
Osprey Publng 7¼x4¾ hardcover [9/2007] out of print/50+ used
Dinkum Dictionary Origins book by Susan Butler  "Dinkum Dictionary: The Origins of Australian Words" [2009]
by Susan Butler

Kindle Edition from Text Publng [5/2010] for $25.95
The Text Publng Co. 7¾x5 3rd edition pb [1/2009] out of print/used
I Love It When You Talk Retro book by Ralph Keyes  "I Love It When You Talk Retro: Hoochie Coochie, Double Whammy, Drop A Dime, and The Forgotten Origins of American Speech" [2009]
by Ralph Keyes

Kindle Edition from St. Martin's Press [3/2009] for $7.99
St. Martin's Griffin 8½x5½ pb [2/2010] for $16.62
St. Martin's Press 8½x5¾ hardcover [3/2009] out of print/40+ used
1200 Words You Should Know to Sound Smart book by Robert W. Bly  "The Words You Should Know To Sound Smart: 1200 Essential Words Every Sophisticated Person Should Be Able To Use" [2009] by Robert W. Bly
Kindle Edition from Simon & Schuster Digital Sales [4/2009] for $8.99
Adams Media 8½x5½ pb [4/2009] for $6.54
Fall River Press hardcover [2016] out of print/used
English-Esperanto-English Dictionary by John Christopher Wells  "English-Esperanto-English Dictionary" [Feb 2010] John C. Wells
I decided to look for an "Esparanto For Dummies" book, but there is no such; that seems strange because the manufactured Esparanto language never caught on because it is in fact designed for dummies: the only selling point is that it is easy for folks who don't speak diffi-cult languages like English. Well, here's the situation: this dictionary has a mere 30,000 words, the typical college edition English dictionary has twice that, and the Webster's International contains 472,000 entries – more words, richer language, more precision in expression. Esparanto is a waste of time – learn English! (and-or Chinese).
How The English Language Became The World's Language book by Robert McCrum  
"Globish: How The English Language Became The World's Language" [2010]
by Robert McCrum

Kindle Edition from W.W. Norton & Co. [5/2010] for $14.82
W.W. Norton & Co. 9¼x6 hardcover [5/2010] for $17.79
Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang book by John Ayto & John Simpson  "Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang" [orig 1992, rev 2010]
by John Ayto & John Simpson

Oxford Quick Reference 2nd edition 7½x5 pb [5/2010] for $12.70
Oxford Univ Press 7½x5 pb [5/2000] out of print/used
Oxford Univ Press 9½x6½ hardcover [11/92] for $13.49
Language Matters Guide book by Donna Jo Napoli & Vera Lee-Schoenfeld  "Language Matters: A Guide To Everyday Questions About Language"
[2003, rev 2010] by Donna Jo Napoli & Vera Lee-Schoenfeld

Kindle Edition from Oxford Univ Press [2nd edition 7/2010] for $9.99
Oxford Univ Press 2nd edition 7x5 pb [7/2010] for $18.85
Oxford Univ Press 7x5 hardcover [3/2003] out of print/used
Green's Dictionary of Slang 3-volume set by Jonathon Green  "Green's Dictionary of Slang in 3 Volumes" [2011]
by Jonathon Green, 'the leading slang lexicographer of our time'

over 53,000 entries totaling 10.3 million words, providing definitions of 100,000 words with over 413,000 citations
Oxford Univ Press 11x8 hardcover set [2/2011] 3 books for $326.81 {sic}
The Story of English in 100 Words book by David Crystal  
"The Story of English In 100 Words" [2012] by David Crystal, OBE
Kindle Edition from St. Martin's/Macmillan [3/2012] for $9.99
Picador 7¼x4½ pb [3/2013] for $11.32
St. Martin's Press 8½x6 hardcover [3/2012] out of print/40+ used
500 Foreign Words & Phrases book by Peter & Linda Archer   "500 Foreign Words & Phrases You Should Know To Sound Smart: Terms To Demonstrate Your Savoir Faire, Chutzpah, and Bravado" [2012]
by Peter Archer & Linda Archer PhD

Kindle Edition from Simon & Schuster Digital Sales [5/2012] for $10.99
Adams Media 8½x5½ pb [6/2012] for $9.04
Language Intelligence book by Joe Romm = Joseph J. Romm  "Language Intelligence: Lessons On Persuasion From Jesus, Shakespeare, Lincoln, and Lady Gaga" [2012] by Joseph J. Romm
Kindle Edition from CreateSpace [7/2012] for $9.99
CreateSpace 8x5¼ pb [7/2012] for $14.99
History of The English Language book by Albert C. Baugh & Thomas Cable  "A History of The English Language" [orig 1951, rev 2012]
by Albert C. Baugh & Thomas Cable

Routledge 6th edition 9¼x6 pb [8/2012] for $54.10
Pearson 6th edition 9x6 hardcover [8/2012] for $187.45 {sic}
Routledge 5th edition 9¼x6 pb [3/2002] out of print/used
Longman 5th edition 9x6¼ hardcover [11/2001] out of print/50+ used
"A Companion To Baugh & Cable's A History of The English Language"
[rev 2012] by Thomas Cable

Pearson 4th edition 10¾x8¼ pb [9/2012] for $66.67
What Language Is and What It Isn't book by John McWhorter  
"What Language Is: And What It Isn't and What It Could Be" [2012]
by John McWhorter

Avery 8x5¼ pb [8/2012] for $12.19
Let's Bring Back / Lost Language book by Lesley M.M. Blume  "Let's Bring Back: The Lost Language Edition: A Collection of Forgotten-Yet-Delightful Words, Phrases, Praises, Insults, Idioms, and Literary Flourishes From Eras Past" [2013] by {Huffington Post columnist} Lesley M.M. Blume
Kindle Edition from Chronicle Books [4/2013] for $9.99
Chronicle Books 8½x5¼ hardcover [3/2013] for $13.65
S.N.A.F.U. Sailor, Airman, and Soldier Slang of World War II book by Gordon L. Rottman  "S.N.A.F.U. (Situation Normal All F***ed Up): Sailor, Airman, and Soldier Slang of World War II" [2013] by Gordon L. Rottman
Kindle Edition from Osprey Publng [10/2013] for $11.49
Osprey Publng 7½x5 hardcover [10/2013] for $15.95
Dictionary of Clichés book by Christine Ammer   "The Dictionary of Clichés: A Word Lover's Guide To 4,000 Overused Phrases and Almost-Pleasing Platitudes" [2013] by Christine Ammer
Kindle Edition from Skyhorse Publng [11/2013] for $2.99
Skyhorse Publng 9x6 pb [11/2013] for $12.52
Language Five Hundred Years book by Jonathon Green  "Language!: Five Hundred Years of The Vulgar Tongue" [2014]
by Jonathon Green

Atlantic Books 9½x6½ hardcover [4/2014] out of print/used
Atlantic Books 9½x6½ hardcover [4/2014] out of print/used
Atlantic Books 9½x6½ hardcover [4/2014] out of print/used
The Language of Food book by Dan Jurafsky  "The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads The Menu" [2014]
by Dan Jurafsky

Kindle Edition from W.W. Norton [9/2014] for $9.99
W.W. Norton & Co. 8¼x5½ pb [10/2015] for $11.53
W.W. Norton & Co. 9½x6½ hardcover [9/2014] for $18.60
Green's History of Slang book by Jonathon Green  "The Vulgar Tongue: Green's History of Slang" [2014]
by Jonathon Green

Kindle Edition from Oxford Univ Press [9/2014] for $9.99
Oxford Univ Press 9¼x6½ hardcover [10/2014] for $13.54
Lingo, Around Europe in Sixty Languages book by Gaston Dorren  "Lingo: Around Europe In Sixty Languages" [2014] by Gaston Dorren
Kindle Edition from Atlantic Monthly Press [12/2015] for $9.99
Grove Press 8x5½ pb [12/2016] for $17.00
Atlantic Monthly Press 8½x5¾ hardcover [12/2015] for $15.49
Profile Books hardcover [11/2014] out of print/used
Palimpsest History of the Written Word book by Matthew Battles  "Palimpsest: A History of The Written Word" [2015]
by Matthew Battles

A 'palimpsest' is a manuscript page or other object that has been repurposed.
Kindle Edition from W.W. Norton & Co. [7/2015] for $9.99
W.W. Norton & Co. 8¼x5½ pb [7/2016] for $11.11
W.W. Norton & Co. 9½x6½ hardcover [7/2015] for $19.40
Frontier Slang, Lingo & Phrases book by Kathy Weiser-Alexander   "Frontier Slang, Lingo & Phrases" [2015]
by Kathy Weiser-Alexander

CreateSpace 9x6 pb [9/2015] for $9.95
In Praise of Profanity book by Michael Adams  "In Praise of Profanity" [2016]
by Michael Adams

Kindle Edition from Oxford Univ Press [8/2016] for $11.99
Oxford Univ Press 8½x6 hardcover [8/2016] for $17.95
History & Uncertain Future of Handwriting book by Anne Trubek  "The History and Uncertain Future of Handwriting" [2016]
by Anne Trubek

Kindle Edition from Bloomsbury USA [9/2016] for $9.99
Bloomsbury USA 8½x5¾ hardcover [9/2016] for $21.90
What the F book by Benjamin K. Bergen  "What The F: What Swearing Reveals About Our Language, Our Brains, and Ourselves" [2016] by {linguist & cognitive scientist} Benjamin K. Bergen
Kindle Edition from Basic Books/Hachette [9/2016] for $18.99
Basic Books 9¼x6 hardcover [9/2016] for $17.73
Speaking American book by Josh Katz  "Speaking American: How Y’all, Youse, and You Guys Talk
- An Illustrated Guide" [2016] by Josh Katz

Kindle Fire Edition from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt [10/2016] for $12.99
*DESIGNED FOR KINDLE FIRE TABLETS*    *NOT FOR KINDLE E-READERS*
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 10x9½ hardcover [10/2016] for $15.00

Talking Back, Talking Black book by John McWhorter  "Talking Back, Talking Black: Truths About America's Lingua Franca"
[2016] by John McWhorter

Kindle Edition from Bellevue Literary Press [12/2016] for $11.99
Bellevue Literary Press 7½x4¾ hardcover [1/2017] for $13.23
Memory Code - Secrets of Ancient Monuments book by Lynne Kelly  "The Memory Code: The Secrets of Stonehenge, Easter Island, and Other Ancient Monuments" [2017] by Dr. Lynne Kelly
Kindle Edition from Pegasus Books [2/2017] for $14.99
Pegasus Books 9¼x6½ hardcover [2/2017] for $17.46
Word by Word / Dictionaries book by Kory Stamper  "Word By Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries" [2017]
by Merriam-Webster editor Kory Stamper

'a superbly entertaining account of dictionaries' inner workings and creation'
Kindle Edition from Pantheon/Random House [3/2017] for $13.99
Pantheon 8½x5¾ hardcover [3/2017] for $16.81
Vulgar Tongues Alternative History book by Max Décharné  "Vulgar Tongues: An Alternative History of English Slang" [2017]  6/2017
by Max Décharné

Kindle Edition from Pegasus Books [6/2017] for $12.99
Pegasus Books 9¼x6½ hardcover [6/2017] for $18.32


Alphabets,  Fonts,  Glyphs  &  Punctuation

'The Elements of Style' book by Strunk & White  "The Elements of Style, 50th Anniversary Edition" [orig 1959, rev 2008]
by William Strunk, Jr. [1869-1946] and E.B. White [1899-1985]

Longman 8¼x5 hardcover [10/2008] out of print/used
"The Elements of Style, Illustrated" [2005] with 57 illustrations by Maira Kalman
Penguin Books 8½x6 pb [8/2007] for $9.60
Penguin Press 8½x6¼ hardcover [10/2005] out of print/40+ used
The Story of Writing book by Andrew Robinson  "The Story of Writing: Alphabets, Hieroglyphs & Pictograms" [1995]
by Andrew Robinson

Thames & Hudson 2nd edition 10x7½ pb [5/2007] for $17.06
Thames & Hudson 10½x8 hardcover [12/95] out of print/80+ used
The Alphabet versus The Goddess book by Dr. Leonard Shlain  "The Alphabet versus The Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image" [1998]
national bestseller by Dr. Leonard Shlain [1937-2009]
brief book entry at Wikipedia
Kindle Edition from Penguin Books [1999 edition] for $13.99
Penguin Books 8½x5½ pb [9/99] for $15.43
Penguin pb [9/99] out of print/50+ used
Viking Adult 9½x6½ hardcover [9/98] for $12.19
Viking hardcover [1998] out of print/used
Common Errors In English Usage book by Paul Brians  
"Common Errors In English Usage" [2003]
by Paul Brians

William James & Co. 9x6 pb [3/2003] out of print/100+ used
official booksite
Eats, Shoots & Leaves  "Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach To Punctuation" [2004]
by Lynne Truss
listed as Los Angeles Times Book Review Best of 2004
Kindle Edition from Avery/Penguin Group [2004 edition] for $11.99
Avery 7¼x5 pb [4/2006] for $10.20
Gotham 7¼x5¼ hardcover [4/2004] for $15.94
Pocket Idiot's Guide to Grammar and Punctuation book by Jay Stevenson  "The Pocket Idiot's Guide To Grammar and Punctuation" [2005]
by Jay Stevenson, PhD

Kindle Edition from Alpha/Penguin Group [2005 edition] for $5.99
Alpha Books mass pb [7/2005] for $9.85
Missed Periods and Other Grammar Scares book by Jenny Baranick  "Missed Periods and Other Grammar Scares: How To Avoid Unplanned and Unwanted Grammar Errors" [2012] by Jenny Baranick
Kindle Edition from Skyhorse Publng [9/2012] for $9.73
Skyhorse Publng pb [9/2012] out of print/used
Skyhorse Publng 7½x5½ hardcover [9/2012] for $11.36
author's official weblog {last update 2015}
Anatomy of Type / 100 Typefaces book by Stephen Coles  "The Anatomy of Type: A Graphic Guide To 100 Typefaces" [2012]
by Stephen Coles

Kindle Edition from HarperCollins Publrs [12/2012] for $8.49
HarperDesign 10x8 hardcover [11/2012] for $20.05
HarperDesign 10x8 hardcover [11/2012] out of print/used
Feisty Guide to Punctuation and Grammar book by Jenny Baranick  "Kiss My Asterisk: A Feisty Guide To Punctuation and Grammar" [2014]
by Jenny Baranick

Is this the same as Baranick's 2012 book? Hard to say, as the page count is the same but the Amazon data is incomplete and the publisher is confused, so guessing doesn't help.
Skyhorse Publng 7½x5½ pb [3/2014] for $10.24
Skyhorse Publng pb [3/2014] out of print/used
author's official weblog {last update 2015}
New York Times Manual of Style and Usage book by Allan M. Siegal & William G. Connolly  
"The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage, 5th Edition: The Official Style Guide Used By The Writers and Editors of The World's Most Authoritative News Organization" [2015] by Allan M. Siegal & William G. Connolly
Kindle Edition from Three Rivers Press/Random House [2/2015] for $14.99
Three Rivers Press 9¼x6 pb [9/2015] for $14.44
First Signs / Mysteries of the World's Oldest Symbols book by Genevieve von Petzinger  "The First Signs: Unlocking The Mysteries of The World's Oldest Symbols" [2016] by Genevieve von Petzinger
Kindle Edition from Simon & Schuster Digital Sales [5/2016] for $12.99
Atria Books 9x6 pb [3/2017] for $9.48
Atria Books 9x6 hardcover [5/2016] for $16.20
The Letter and the Cosmos book by Laurence de Looze  "The Letter and The Cosmos: How The Alphabet Has Shaped The Western View of The World" [2016] by Laurence de Looze
Kindle Edition from Univ Toronto Press [6/2016] for $14.49
Univ Toronto Press 9x6 pb [6/2016] for $18.96
Univ Toronto Press 9x6 hardcover [6/2016] for $70.00


Movies  &  Television

    The Story of English book by Robert McCrum, Robert MacNeil & William Cran  "The Story of English" TV movie [B.B.C./P.B.S. aired Sept-Nov 1986]
Nine-episode miniseries directed by William Cran; written by Robert MacNeil &
Robert McCrum; narrated by Robert MacNeil; won Emmy Award for Best Writing
series credits at IMDb; DVD/Blu-ray not available
Homevision color VHS [9/2001] 5 tapes for $99.99
Speaking In Tongues TV documentary  "Speaking In Tongues" TV documentary [PatchWorks Prodns 2000]
56-minute TV documentary subtitled in Mandarin, Spanish, and English; four families enroll their kids in a language-immersion school and on the first day the teacher speaks only Mandarin Chinese • Produced, written & directed by Marcia Jarmel & Ken Schneider; featuring Julian Enis, Durrell Laury, Jason Patino, Kelly Wong
DVD available at official movie website (Home Use or Institutional options)
Amazon Instant Video [4/2009] home use only - watch free with Fandor signup
full credits at IMDbofficial producer website

Speaking in Tongues / History of Language documentary mini-series  "Speaking In Tongues: The History of Language" mini-series [Canada April 2008]
5-part TV documentary mini-series: episode titles are "Let There Be Words", "Constant Change", "Mother Tongues", "Civilization To Colonization", and "Life and Death'; the standard prediction is that within a century more than half of the world’s languages will become extinct • Produced & directed by Christene Browne; featuring Lyle Campbell (Univ. of Utah), Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, Noam Chomsky (M.I.T.), Peter Daniels, Michel DeGraff (M.I.T.), Nobel physicist Murray Gell-Mann, Larry Hyman (U.C. Berkeley), Jay Jasanoff (Harvard), Brian Joseph (O.S.U.), Richard Klein, Peter Ladefoged, Philip Lieberman (Brown University), Hua Lin (Univ. of Victoria), John McWhorter (Manhattan Institute), Salikoko Mufwene (Univ. of Chicago), Johanna Nichols (U.C. Berkeley), Merritt Ruhlen (Stanford) • streaming available at producer website
full credits at IMDbofficial movie websitewatch official trailer [5/2013 upload; 1:01] online at YouTube

Language Matters With Bob Hollman on DVD  "Language Matters With Bob Hollman" [PBS April 2015]
What do we lose when a language dies? Filmed around the world: off the coast of Australia, where 400 Aboriginal people speak 10 different languages, all at risk; in Wales, where Welsh, once in danger, is today making a comeback; and in Hawai'i, where a group of Hawaiian activists are fighting to save their native tongue • Co-produced by David Grubin & Bob Holman; written & directed by David Grubin; featuring Bob Holman (voice), Arlene W. Eaton, Pele Harmon, Kauanoe Kamana, Larry Kimura, Kepa Maly, William Stanley Merwin, Lolena Nicholas, Puakea Nogelmeier, Keali'i Reichel, Kaui Sai-Dudoit
P.B.S. Home Video widescreen color DVD [3/2015] for $16.79
full credits at IMDbofficial movie website


Other  Media


L i n k s
National Cued Speech Association [est.1973] based in Washington, DC
Endangered Language Alliance [est. 2010] based in New York City
[U.S.] National Punctuation Day® [est. 2004] on September 24

article 'Twists, Slugs, and Roscoes: A Glossary of Hardboiled Slang'

Linguistic Society of America [est. 1925] based in Washington, DC
Australian Linguistic Society [est. 1967]
Cambridge University Linguistic Society []
the chicago linguistic society [est. 1965] at The University of Chicago
The Linguistic Society of Japan [] based in Kyoto
The Linguistic Society of the Philippines [est. 1969] based in Manila, Philippines
Slavic Linguistics Society [est. 2004]


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