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Corpus-based language studies : an advanced resource book.

Research output: Book/Report/ProceedingsBook

Publication date2006
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages386
ISBN (Print)0415286220
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Publication series

NameRoutledge Applied Linguistics Series


The corpus-based approach to linguistic analysis and language teaching has come to prominence over the past two decades. This book seeks to bring readers up to date with the latest developments in corpus-based language studies. In comparison with the existing introductory books in corpus linguistics, Corpus-based Language Studies is unique in a number of ways. First, this is a book which covers the 'how to' as well as the 'why'. In approaching 'how to', we obviously have to focus on specific concordance packages and corpora which are currently available. However, our aim is to embrace a range of corpora and packages, hence hopefully offsetting any problems due to corpora being withdrawn or software radically changed. It is the 'how to' focus which in large part makes this book stand out from other available volumes. This book includes six case studies, each exploring a particular research question using specific tools. This is where the reader learns how to do corpus linguistics, as the process of investigating the data using the package(s) concerned is spelt out step by step, using text and screenshots. Thus by the end of each case study, a corpus has been introduced, the reader has learnt how to use a retrieval package and some research questions have been explored. Readers are then encouraged to explore a related research question using the same corpus data, tools and techniques. As well as explaining 'how to', the book also addresses 'why'. While we may expect the reader to consult other books on corpus linguistics, we want this book, for two distinct reasons, to explore what one may do with corpus data and why one should want to do it. Firstly, and obviously, if we want the reader to be able to 'become' a corpus linguist having read the book, we clearly have to explain the rationale for corpus-based studies, and to use case studies both to exemplify the worth of corpus linguistics as well as the features of the packages concerned. Secondly, we want this book to tie in much more closely with linguistic theory than previous books in corpus linguistics have done. Our goal is to engage research questions and theory with corpus linguistics with an increasing depth and intensity as the book progresses. Second, this is a book which engages with a range of approaches to the use of corpus data, which makes it different from existing books in corpus linguistics, with each case study focusing on a major approach to the use of corpus data while paying little or no attention to other approaches. After reading this volume, readers are expected to understand when and how to combine these approaches with other methodologies. Finally, this is a book which is more focused on multilingual corpus linguistics than available corpus books. While this volume is concerned mainly with English corpus linguistics, we also cover issues in multilingual corpus linguistics, and have one case study focusing on a language other than English.