Formal Linguistics and the Teaching of Latin: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives in Comparative Grammar

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9781443829885: Formal Linguistics and the Teaching of Latin: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives in Comparative Grammar

This volume offers a coherent collection of 26 papers presented at an international conference held in November 2010, exploring the latest achievements of formal and comparative linguistics applied to the teaching of Latin. The three sections (syntax and morphology, semantics and pragmatics, history and theory of teaching) compare Latin with different ancient and modern languages, aiming to represent grammar rules as the product of mental processes. This book is addressed to linguists, teachers and students, who are looking for new perspectives to update their approach to classical Latin.

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About the Author:

Renato Oniga is Professor of Latin and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Languages at the University of Udine, Italy. He published numerous articles, monographs and editions of classical authors (Plautus, Sallust and Tacitus), as well as a book on nominal compounding and a generative introduction to Latin. Rossella Iovino is a Ph.D. Student of Linguistics at the University Ca' Foscari of Venice, Italy. Her current research is devoted to the syntax of Latin Nominal Expressions. Giuliana Giusti is Associate Professor of Linguistics at the University Ca' Foscari of Venice, Italy. Her research is focused on the synchronic and diachronic syntax of Nominal Expressions in Romance, Germanic and Balkan Languages. She is also devoted to the dissemination of the advances in theoretical linguistics to the language teaching.

Review:

Formal linguistics is more explicit and more precise than other types of grammar. Since it has access to more sophisticated tools of grammatical analysis, it tends to achieve more explanatory results, which in turn leads to a deeper level of understanding on the part of the student. The 26 papers in this volume are arranged into three sections covering morphology and syntax (with emphasis on word order), semantics and pragmatics, and the history and theory of teaching. Various ways of bridging the gap between formal linguistics and more traditional approaches are discussed, and the potential applications of formal linguistics in the classroom are explored. The goals of this volume are as practically important as they are theoretically desirable. Latin teachers everywhere will greatly benefit from this presentation of recent theoretical ideas. --Andrew M. Devine, Professor of Classics, Stanford University, USA, Laurence D. Stephens, Adjunct Professor of Classics, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

This book presents a valuable contribution to the Linguistics of Latin not only in relation to Romance languages stemming from it, but also in relation to Classical Greek and other languages of Europe. Some articles connect their theoretical observations with a methodology for the formal teaching of Latin. The reflection on the grammatical structures of a language used to be one of the main, if not the most important tool to foreign language learning. Nowadays, however, this approach is generally abandoned in the teaching of modern languages. But it is still the center of classical language teaching, which however calls for an update on new theoretical approaches and the advances reached by recent studies. The greatest merit of this volume lies in its attempt to match theoretical reflections on the linguistic structures of Latin with methodological issues of teaching. --Lorenzo Renzi, Professor of Romance Philology, Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy, Vice-President of the Société de Linguistique Romane.

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Renato Oniga, Rossella Iovino, Giuliana
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