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This course looks at some of the many facets of human language explored by linguists, using lectures, discussions, segments of The Great Courses (John McWhorter and Seth Lerer), YouTube clips, and visiting scholars. We will define language and linguistics, look at the origins of language, its history, language families and the place of English within that history. We will also reflect on language change and the role of writing in language (and cultural) development. Finally, we will explore language learning (particularly of second languages) and the efforts at language maintenance for languages in danger of dying.
Instructor(s): Renate Schultz
Renate Schulz, Professor Emerita University of Arizona, holds a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics with a specialty area in foreign language education/educational linguistics. She has taught languages (German, French, English) in the U.S. and abroad and has trained language teachers on several continents. She is widely published in her field and was instrumental in developing the interdisciplinary PH.D. in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching at the University of Arizona. She has received the Bundesverdienstkreuz (highest civilian honor) from the Federal Republic of Germany and an honorary doctorate from the University of Leipzig in recognition of her work.
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