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Journeys In English
Cover of Journeys In English
Journeys In English
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This highly entertaining BBC Radio 4 series is written and presented by Bill Bryson and based on his bestselling book, 'Mother Tongue'. In it he romps through the history of Britain to reveal how English became such an infuriatingly complex – but ultimately world-beating – language. But why English? Why don't we speak Gallic, or any other of the European languages? According to Bryson, it's down to the remarkable ability for the English language to assimilate other vocabularies, to adapt and – above all – to survive. From the old English words that are still in everyday use, such as 'eat', 'drink', 'man' and 'wife', to the current hybrid language of the 21st century with its many diverse dialects, Bryson, in his unique and ever-affable style, guides us through the development of English into a rich and expressive language. Bryson explains how English has been shaped through invasion and conquest, as well as the rules that brought order to a disorderly language, the million and one ways to have fun with the English language, and the struggle with phrasal verbs (including the way things often get lost in the translation). And finally, he contemplates the future of English. Does Estuary English really Rule OK? '...Worth a listen for anyone who is interested in how we came to have such a rich language' - Sunday Times
This highly entertaining BBC Radio 4 series is written and presented by Bill Bryson and based on his bestselling book, 'Mother Tongue'. In it he romps through the history of Britain to reveal how English became such an infuriatingly complex – but ultimately world-beating – language. But why English? Why don't we speak Gallic, or any other of the European languages? According to Bryson, it's down to the remarkable ability for the English language to assimilate other vocabularies, to adapt and – above all – to survive. From the old English words that are still in everyday use, such as 'eat', 'drink', 'man' and 'wife', to the current hybrid language of the 21st century with its many diverse dialects, Bryson, in his unique and ever-affable style, guides us through the development of English into a rich and expressive language. Bryson explains how English has been shaped through invasion and conquest, as well as the rules that brought order to a disorderly language, the million and one ways to have fun with the English language, and the struggle with phrasal verbs (including the way things often get lost in the translation). And finally, he contemplates the future of English. Does Estuary English really Rule OK? '...Worth a listen for anyone who is interested in how we came to have such a rich language' - Sunday Times
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About the Author-
  • Bill Bryson (Author, Reader)
    Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1951. His bestselling books include The Road to Little Dribbling, Notes from a Small Island, A Walk in the Woods, One Summer and The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid. In a national poll, Notes from a Small Island was voted the book that best represents Britain. His acclaimed work of popular science, A Short History of Nearly Everything, won the Aventis Prize and the Descartes Prize, and was the biggest selling non-fiction book of its decade in the UK. His new book The Body: A Guide for Occupants is an extraordinary exploration of the human body which will have you marvelling at the form you occupy.
    Bill Bryson was Chancellor of Durham University 2005–2011. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society. He lives in England.

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Journeys In English
Bill Bryson
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