... well, sort of. I'm still in Birmingham, a few hours short of taking the plane back to Spain after a wonderful conference IATEFL 2016, which I'm sure most of you have followed online if you weren't there.
This was only the second IATEFL conference I have attended, the first was Liverpool three years ago, although I followed Manchester 2015 online, and I must say that the level and quality of the plenaries and sessions was very high. I particulary enjoyed David Crystal's opening plenary and Silvana Richardson's on Thursday moved not only me to tears, proof of which is the standing ovation she received at the end.
Over the next few weeks, I will be posting my impressions on the talks I attended and some of the videos that IATEFL 2016 have posted for everyone to see kindly sponsored by the British Council.
As I'm attending APPI's Annual Conference in Aveiro next week, I'll be sharing my impressions on that also. Lots of work ahead!
Here's the first!
Who would of thought it? The English language 1966-2066
Complaints about a supposed decline in standards of English continue to be made, with increasing frequency, in the British press. Although these are nothing new - as the long history of use of would of for would have illustrates - they do draw attention to the way we seem to be going through a period of unusually rapid language change. This paper illustrates the main changes in pronunciation, orthography, grammar, and vocabulary, discusses the chief factors involved - social mobility, globalization, and the Internet - and compares the changes that have taken place in the past fifty years with those that are likely to take place in the next fifty.
David Crystal is honorary professor of linguistics at the University of Bangor, and works from his home in Holyhead, North Wales, as a writer, editor, lecturer, and broadcaster. He read English at University College London, specialized in English language studies, then joined academic life as a lecturer in linguistics, first at Bangor, then at Reading, where he became professor of linguistics. He received an OBE for services to the English language in 1995. Recent books include The Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary (with Ben Crystal), Making a point: the pernickety story of English punctuation, The disappearing dictionary, and The gift of the gab: how eloquence works.
His current research is chiefly in applied historical English phonology, with particular reference to Shakespearean original pronunciation. He is the patron of IATEFL.