- Series: Studies in English Language
- Hardcover: 236 pages
- Publisher: Cambridge University Press (June 16, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0521820073
- ISBN-13: 978-0521820073
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,688,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Gender Shifts in the History of English (Studies in English Language)
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"Those who pick this book up expecting a dry study of inflection ... will be delighted to find the Curzan has made linguistic research both accessible and relevant.... This volume is a must-read for anyone interested in the history of English, sociolinguistics, or language and gender. Essential." Choice
How and why did grammatical gender gradually disappear from English and get replaced by a system where the gender of nouns and the use of personal pronouns depend on the natural gender of the referent? How is this shift related to 'irregular agreement' (she for ships) and 'sexist' language use (generic he) in Modern English, and how is the language continuing to evolve in these respects? Anne Curzan's study, based on extensive corpus data, will make a major contribution by providing a historical perspective on these often controversial questions.
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