Most Popular Pages—Last 30 Days

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1. Vol CLXXIX, No 4 (430 visits)

Speculative Grammarian Volume CLXXIX, Number 4 ... Trey Jones, Editor-in-Chief Keith Slater, Executive Editor, Associate Editors, Pete Bleackley Jonathan Downie Mikael Thompson, Assistant Editors, Virginia Bouchard Mark Mandel Yuval Wigderson, Editorial Associates, Florian Breit Bethany Carlson Madalena Cruz-Ferreira Vincent Fish Anita G. Gorman Tel Monks Bill Spruiell Don Unger Sheri Wells-Jensen, Joey Whitford, Comptroller General Evidence? We Don’t Need No Steenking Evidence! October 2017 ... more ]

2. Linguistics Nerd CampBethany Carlson (276 visits)

Linguistics Nerd Camp. Bethany Carlson. The linguists strike back ... more ]

3. Germanic Day & The Celebration of Romance (220 visits)

Germanic Day & The Celebration of Romance . We are making something known to you: Germanic Day!. Speculative Grammarian is happy to tell the world about our new yearly holidayGermanic Day! What is Germanic Day? It is a day set aside to think about the Germanic roots that can still be found in English. It gives thanks for the lasting strength of Germanic words. Germanic Day happens on October 13. That was the last day before King Harold was struck down by the Norman gang led by William, and Germanic words at the heart of English began to wane. Before that, English was all Germanic; afterwards, French loanwords took over. What will we do on Germanic Day? ... more ]

4. The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics (178 visits)

The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics . For decades, Speculative Grammarian has been the premier scholarly journal featuring research in the neglected field of satirical linguisticsand now it is available in book formboth physical and electronic! We wish we were kidding, but no, seriously, we’ve published a large collection of SpecGram articles, along with just enough new material to force obsessive collectors and fans to buy it, regardless of the cost. From the Introduction: The past twenty-five years have witnessed many changes in linguistics, with major developments in linguistic theory, significant expansion in language description, and even ... more ]

5. About Us (174 visits)

Speculative Grammarian and Our Story. The august journal Speculative Grammarian has a long, rich, and varied history, weaving an intricate and subtle tapestry from disparate strands of linguistics, philology, history, politics, science, technology, botany, pharmacokinetics, computer science, the mathematics of humor, basket weaving, archery, glass blowing, roller coaster design, and bowling, among numerous other, less obvious fields. SpecGram, as it is known to devotees and sworn enemies alike, has for centuries sought to bring together the greatest yet least understood minds of the time, embedding itself firmly in the cultural and psychological matrix of the global society while ... more ] Podcast!

6. /nuz baɪts/Linguist Discovers Alternative Source of Energy at Conference (159 visits)

/ nuz baɪts /. Not a wire news service but still more reliable than most newspapers. Linguist Discovers Alternative Source of Energy at Conference. Dr Willy Orr-Wontee of the University of Lesser Butt-Creek has announced that at he has discovered a fully renewable source of energy available at LSA meetings. In one interaction, where a theorist accidentally walked into a field linguistics presentation, a large-ego collision was recorded generating over 15GWh in hot air, steam and heat from the facial region. Dr Orr-Wontee set about testing this in a laboratory, exposing theorists to ever-increasing amounts of data until critical mass was achieved. His results show that, while a theorist ... more ]

7. On BimonthlyA Letter from the Editor-in-Chief (158 visits)

On Bimonthly. A Letter from the Editor-in-Chief. Attentive readers will have noticed that since the June issue, SpecGram has only been published every other month. The Editorial Board has recently completed negotiations with the three main workers’ unions for SpecGram internsthe Hegemonic Chomskyan Interns Union, the Chomskian Union of Hegemonical Interns, and the hUnion of Hegemaniacal Chornskyian Interns. Unfortunately, we allowed our sloth to get the better of us and left most of our end of the negotiation to the SpecGram legal interns, whobeing mere internsare not strictly required to adhere to notions of ... more ]

8. Linguimericks, Etc.Book ४४ (157 visits)

Linguimericks, Etc. Book ४४. A young lady who lived in Cape Cod Dropped her lovers like each was a yod. Says she, “How are /u/?” They replied, “Rather /blju/; Your di’lect indeed is quite odd.” —P. Ublekkdeaux Meign, On her way past my office one day, A philosopher popped in to say: “Every thing linguists claim Is epistemically vain: All your bes, ares, and wills should read may.” —Morris Swadesh III, There was once a linguist from Bow Who claimed all earth’s languages to know Until filled with grog, He trawled through Ethnologue And discovered at once Judezmo —Vi va Voce, cfg schmfg syntax’s excess com- plexity sux but ... more ]

9. Post ScriptChip Carver (156 visits)

Post Script. Chip Carver. In anticipation of the imminent opening of SpecGram’s 85th field officethe Sequoyah Memorial Satellite Office in Tahlequahthe Editor-in-Chief sent an intern down with text to be inscribed on the gigantic obelisk that towers over the building and can be seen from most of northeastern Oklahoma.* Unfortunately, the Editor-in-Chief is away on vacation and the intern has gone missing, leaving behind only a scrap of paper with some weird symbols on it. We suspect there’s some sound reasoning behind the symbols, but we don’t know what to do. Can you help us figure out what we’re supposed to have chiseled into the ... more ]

10. O, Apostrophe!Anita G. Gorman (154 visits)

O, Apostrophe!. By Anita G. Gorman. Today, my dears, we shall discuss the apostrophe, with all its works and pomps. Or to write that another way, today, my dear’s, we shall discuss the apostrophe, with all it’s works’ and pomp’s. Anyone who is observant has observed that in recent years the apostrophe has become problematic. Our schools seem to have given up teaching its uses, while at the same time our schools have not eliminated our personal desire to be “correct” or to be somewhere above bottom on the social scale. Therefore, amid our social uncertainty and our ignorance of the apostrophe, we try to compensate or overcorrect and end up with “Fresh vegetable’s ... more ]

11. Archives (149 visits)

SpecGram Archives. A word from our Senior Archivist, Holger Delbrück: While bringing aging media to the web and hence the world is truly a labor of love, SpecGram tries the passion of even the most ardent admirer. Needless to say, we’ve fallen behind schedule. At every turn, the authors found in the pages of this hallowed journal stretch credibility with their gratuitous font mongeringfirst it was the IPA, then a few non-standard transcription systems, then Greek, and not just the alphabet, but the entire diacritical mess, and now I’ve got some god-forsaken Old Church Slavonic glyph sitting on my desk that no one can even name, and which would give the Unicode Consortium ... more ]

12. From the Archives!SpecGram Propaganda XIIIThe SpecGram Archive Elves™ (142 visits)

From the Archives!SpecGram Propaganda XIII. The SpecGram Archive Elves™. A recent expedition into the SpecGram archives turned up a sheaf of early 20th century SpecGram propaganda posters, which were used during the Great Linguistic War and the Second Linguistic War to encourage linguists everywhere to keep a stiff upper lip and a sense of humor during those trying times. This thirteenth batch of posters from that collection has been digitized and presented here for you, dear reader, to enjoy, retrospect on, and share. The full collection, which will continue to grow, is available from the SpecGram Ministry of Propaganda in an easily browsable and sharable ... more ]

13. Linguistic LingerieAdvertisement (141 visits)

ADVERTISEMENT Linguistic Lingerie. Need a gift for the lady linguist in your life? Already got her The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics? This 100% natural linen nightshirt, tastefully embroidered with Middle English ⇒ Early Modern English sound changes, will be exactly what she wants. She’ll love The Great Vowel Shift! , Available in regular, ˑ and ː sizes. ... more ]

14. On Ergative-RelativityI. N. Stein (139 visits)

On Ergative-Relativity. I. N. Stein. Recently I was sitting under an apple tree near Bilbao, struggling with a Basque grammar and drinking one1 of the wonderful local alcoholic ciders, when I drifted off to sleep. A falling apple hit me on the head,2 and I awoke with the sudden realization of why I was having trouble making sense of the language. You see, Basque is not an ergative-absolutive language; rather, it is ergative-relative.3 In the low speaking-rate limit, ergative-relativity reduces to the ergative-absolutive paradigm of classical New Tonian linguistics.4 Most non-native Basque scholars speak a lightly inflected language whose alignment ... more ]

15. Letters to the Editor (CLXXIX.4) (139 visits)

Letters to the Editor. Dear SpecGram, The middle voice demonstrates clearly in “On How Middle Voice Should Not Constrain for Syntax” (Volume CLXIX, Number 1, January 2014). My current research benefits! Thanks on behalf of, Mary Galbraith ... Dear Mary, If the article entertains and enlightens, others can entertain and enlighten as well: An excellent article on the passive voice was written by Joel Boyd. (Ps.Q. XVI.2) Yreka Bakery an article a stunning speech disorder center embedding was caused by described wrote. (SpecGram CLI.2) Claude Searsplainpockets wrote-wrote-wrote with astounding eloquence (yeah! yeah! yeah!) about the hyp-hyp-hyperactive voice. (SpecGram ... more ]

16. Cartoon Theories of LinguisticsPart EPhonetics vs. PhonologyHilário Parenchyma, C.Phil. (138 visits)

Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, Part E—Phonetics vs. Phonology. Hilário Parenchyma, C.Phil. Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn. We will skip the introduction, as we have been there, done that. Once more into the breach! For this installment in our series on Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, we will turn our attention to Phonetics and Phonology and the difference between the two: Phonetics:, ... Phonology:, ... Thanks to Professor Phlogiston, of the Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn, for the opportunity of a lifetime, as a student, to, on this occasion, share with so many of my fellow linguisticians my views, as illustrated above, concerning matters, which are of such immeasurable import ... more ] Merch! Book!

17. Podcast—Language Made Difficult, Vol. L (122 visits)

Language Made Difficult, Vol. L — The SpecGram LingNerds are on their own this time. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds discuss the dangers of mispronouncing the names of Canadian provinces, and then advise students as to what they should *not* do. They also fail to celebrate the 50th episode. Many outtakes are provided. ... listen ]

18. The Sociolinguistic Impact of Hippie Linguist Naming Practicesɹɒbɪn O’Jonesson (118 visits)

The Sociolinguistic Impact of Hippie Linguist Naming Practices. ɹɒbɪn O’Jonesson. There is little discussion in the literature concerning the social and psychological effects of the distinctive and unusual names given to children by their hippie parents, such as Moonbeam, Peacekarma, Ryvre, Starchild, Redpony, and so many more. Even less attention has been paid to the naming practices of the particular sub-culture of hippie linguists, who advocated for free morphemes in the 60’s and gave their children names such as Monophthongbreathstream, Pronouncopula, Rezonator, Asteriskchild, Redponymy, and Noam. ... The family VW van in 1971. Very few people so-named have kept their monikers into ... more ] Podcast! Book!

19. The Gropes of Academe: Scenes of the Modern Academy Shadow-Boxing with Itself with One HandNigel Cornelius Blumscote-Haverford (116 visits)

The Gropes of Academe: Scenes of the Modern Academy, Shadow-Boxing with Itself with One Hand. by, Nigel Cornelius Blumscote-Haverford, Associate Professor, Dept. of Linguistics, Bowbells University of the Humanities, Bowbells ND. Researchers1 in sexology and general psychology2 have long evinced an unhealthy curiosity about what some call “kink” and more normal people call “filthflarnfilth.” In particular, there has been far too much attention paid to games of dominance and submission outside their proper sphere of foreign relations. One of the well-established but far too publicized results is that quite often those who partake in such matters choose a role not ... more ]

20. Choose Your Own Career in Linguistics (112 visits)

Choose Your Own Career in Linguistics. by Trey Jones. As a service to our young and impressionable readers who are considering pursuing a career in linguistics, Speculative Grammarian is pleased to provide the following Gedankenexperiment to help you understand the possibilities and consequences of doing so. For our old and bitter readers who are too far along in their careers to have any real hope of changing the eventual outcome, we provide the following as a cruel reminder of what might have been. Let the adventure begin ... more ] Book!

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Last updated Oct. 17, 2017.