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Hallelujah!  I finished my semester!  After dealing with some interesting new levels of mental exhaustion, finally getting all of my work turned in, and taking a full weekend to do zero productive things (thank you, Tivo), I’m feeling a little bit more like my usual self.  Which means I’m excited about reading again!

There are a few books I’ve been meaning to read and haven’t gotten a chance to during the school year.  I’ve already professed a devotion to lists, so here is Allison’s Official Summer Linguistics Reading List:

  1. Historical Linguistics: An Introduction – historical/comparative linguistics is the subfield in linguistics that interests me the most.  This is supposed to be a great, comprehensive introduction, and I had it already ordered in anticipation of the lovely reading-for-pleasure season that I’m planning for this summer.  It’s very detailed, and very technical, and I mean both of those things in a good way.
  2. A Course in Phonetics – this is a little bit of homework I’m assigning for myself.  I love phonology, but I’m no expert and I won’t get to take a phonetics/phonemics class in this graduate program, so I’m going to work my way through this classic textbook, along with –
  3. Handbook of the International Phonetic Association – one day I’d like to be a field linguist.  I’ll definitely need to know IPA transcription for that.
  4. Through the Language Glass – a really interesting comment to this post reminded me of this book.  From what I understand, this author is saying there really is something to the much-maligned Sapir-Whorf thing.  Especially since I’ll be taking Psycholinguistics in the fall, I think this would be an interesting read.
  5. The Stuff of Thought – speaking of psycholinguistics and innatism…I read this book a few years ago and felt vaguely like I didn’t buy all of what he was saying (but gosh darn it Pinker is a fantastic writer).  Now that I understand a little bit more, I’d like to try it again.
  6. The Horse, the Wheel, and Language – an interesting exercise in archaeology and historical linguistics, this book attempts to explain the origins of Indo-European languages, and specifically to explain why these languages became so powerful and widespread.  I’ve been excited about this one for a long time!
  7. War and Peace – yes, I’m serious.  Wish me luck.  I know it’s not about language, but it’s on my list!

Anybody have any recommendations?  Things I’m missing from this list?  What are you planning on reading this summer?

P.S. In addition to these books, I’m also really excited that I just enrolled in an Arabic class! 😀