The Fictioning Horror Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Powell's Q&A | September 3, 2014

Emily St. John Mandel: IMG Powell’s Q&A: Emily St. John Mandel



Describe your latest book. My new novel is called Station Eleven. It's about a traveling Shakespearean theatre company in a post-apocalyptic North... Continue »
  1. $17.47 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    Station Eleven

    Emily St. John Mandel 9780385353304

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$4.50
Used Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
2 Burnside Reference- Spelling and Vocabulary

More copies of this ISBN

Righting the Mother Tongue: From Olde English to Email, the Tangled Story of English Spelling

by

Righting the Mother Tongue: From Olde English to Email, the Tangled Story of English Spelling Cover

ISBN13: 9780061369254
ISBN10: 006136925x
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 2 left in stock at $4.50!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Righting the Mother Tongue tells the cockamamie story of English spelling. When did ghost acquire its silent 'h'? Will cyberspace kill the one in rhubarb? And was it really rocket scientists who invented spell-check?

Seeking to untangle the twisted story of English spelling, David Wolman takes us on a wordly adventure from English battlefields to Google headquarters. Along the way, he pickets with spelling reformers outside the national spelling bee, visits the town in Belgium, not England, where the first English books were printed, and takes a road-trip with the boss at Merriam-Webster Inc. The journey is punctuated by spelling battles waged by the likes of Samuel Johnson, Noah Webster, Theodore Roosevelt, Andrew Carnegie and the members of today's Simplified Spelling Society.

Rich with history, pop culture, curiosity and humor, Righting the Mother Tongue explores how English spelling came to be, traces efforts to mend the code and imagines the shape of tomorrow's words.

Review:

"Sprightly history that sensibly balances the merits of standardization against the forces for freedom." Kirkus Reviews

Book News Annotation:

Wolman, a righter based in Portland, Oregon, traces trends in the spelling of English down the centuries in such chapters as regime change (Normans), valiant exterminators of dialectical vermin (Caxton and ilk), spellraisers (competition spelling), and the rubarb on the Internet (you know who you are!) Annotation ©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

“A funny and fact-filled look at our astoundingly inconsistent written language, from Shakespeare to spell-check.”
—St. Petersburg Times

 

David Wolman explores seven hundred years of trial, error, and reform that have made the history of English spelling a jumbled and fascinating mess. In Righting the Mother Tongue, the author of A Left-Hand Turn Around the World brings us the tangled story of English Spelling, from Olde English to email. Utterly captivating, deliciously edifying, and extremely witty, Righting the Mother Tongue is a treat for the language lover—a book that belongs in every personal library, right next to Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, and the works of Bill Bryson and Simon Winchester.

About the Author

David Wolman is the author of A Left-Hand Turn Around the World and writes for magazines such as Wired, Newsweek, Outside, National Geographic Traveler and New Scientist. He lives in Portland, OR.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Kristen M, March 2, 2010 (view all comments by Kristen M)
This book is equally interesting for those who love spelling and those who hate it. It includes a brief history of printing, dictionaries and spell-check. We hear about those who have campaigned for phonetic spellings and those who wanted to remove evil French and Greek influences from the language. There is even a discussion of the modern effect of text messaging on the language. This book is not very long so nothing is too in-depth, just right for a general history for anyone mildly interested in this topic.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
Alishabethadams, March 24, 2009 (view all comments by Alishabethadams)
When I started reading Wolman's book, I was surprised to find myself feeling excited, emotional, inspired, and sometimes even angry, over the stories he was sharing.

This book helped me understand some folks' enthusiasm for spell check or text messaging--and others' resistance to them--and made me see them in the context of centuries of language change. Wolman introduces his readers to a number of personalities (dead and alive) who sort of act as guides and make the book relatable. Learning about orthography from multiple characters in different places and times really made it click for me: spelling is a living thing, as much about the human voice as the written word.

I also appreciated Wolman's ability to remain open and curious throughout his journey. He's upfront about his own perspective, but he really just offers the reader a starting point for thinking about the future of words and spelling. It was a fantastic introduction to orthography, leaving me appropriately awed and curious. And I'll never look at a spelling mistake the same again.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780061369254
Subtitle:
From Olde English to Email, the Tangled Story of English Spelling
Author:
Wolman, David
Author:
by David Wolman
Author:
by David Wolman
Publisher:
Smithsonian
Subject:
General
Subject:
English language
Subject:
History
Subject:
Phonetics & Phonics
Subject:
Spelling
Subject:
English language -- Orthography and spelling.
Subject:
Linguistics - Phonetics & Phonology
Subject:
General Language Arts & Disciplines
Subject:
Education-Phonics
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
20081007
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
224
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 0.81 in 14.56 oz

Other books you might like

  1. The Mother Tongue Used Trade Paper $6.50
  2. Anguished English: An Anthology of...
    Used Mass Market $2.95
  3. Alphabet Juice: The Energies, Gists,...
    Used Hardcover $4.50
  4. A Perfect Red: Empire, Espionage,...
    Used Trade Paper $9.50
  5. A is for Art: An Abstract Alphabet Sale Hardcover $4.98
  6. Skim
    New Hardcover $18.95

Related Subjects


Education » Phonics
History and Social Science » Linguistics » General
Reference » Spelling and Vocabulary
Reference » Words Phrases and Language

Righting the Mother Tongue: From Olde English to Email, the Tangled Story of English Spelling Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.50 In Stock
Product details 224 pages Collins - English 9780061369254 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Sprightly history that sensibly balances the merits of standardization against the forces for freedom."
"Synopsis" by ,

“A funny and fact-filled look at our astoundingly inconsistent written language, from Shakespeare to spell-check.”
—St. Petersburg Times

 

David Wolman explores seven hundred years of trial, error, and reform that have made the history of English spelling a jumbled and fascinating mess. In Righting the Mother Tongue, the author of A Left-Hand Turn Around the World brings us the tangled story of English Spelling, from Olde English to email. Utterly captivating, deliciously edifying, and extremely witty, Righting the Mother Tongue is a treat for the language lover—a book that belongs in every personal library, right next to Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, and the works of Bill Bryson and Simon Winchester.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.