Posted: Aug 06, 2021 4:52 am
by don't get me started
1. Pragmatic Meaning and Cognition – Sophia S.A. Marmaridou
2. Fire and Fury: The Allied Bombing of Germany and Japan - Randall Hansen
3. Cognitive Exploration of Language and Linguistics – René Dirven and Marjolijn Verspoor (Eds.)
4. Age of Static: How TV Explains Modern Britain – Phil Harrison
5. The Secret of Our Success: How Culture is Driving Human Evolution, Domesticating our Species and Making us Smarter – Joseph Henrich
6. Heroic Failure and the British - Stephanie Barczewski
7. Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain - Maryanne Wolf
8. Language Soup: A Taste of How Diverse People Around the World Communicate - Kathryn A. T. Knox
9. A Place for everything: The curious History of Alphabetical order – Judith Flanders
10. Contrastive Analysis - Carl James
11. Impossible Languages- Andrea Moro
12. Languages in the World: How History, Culture and Politics Shape Language – Jukie tetel Andresen and Phillip M. Carter
13. HHhH - Laurent Binet (Translated from the French by Sam Taylor)
14. Impoliteness: Using Language to Cause Offense – Jonathan Culpeper
15. Ethosyntax: Explorations in Grammar and Culture – N. J. Enfield (Ed.)
16. Second Language Speech Fluency: From Research to Practice – Parvaneh Tavakoli & Clare Wright.
17. At Day's Close: Night in Times Past – A. Roger Ekirch
18. Language Shock: Understanding the Culture of Conversation – Michael Agar
19. Possessives in English: An Exploration in Cognitive Grammar - John R. Taylor
20. I saw the Dog: How Language Works – Alexandra Aikhenvald.
21. The German War: A Nation under Arms, 1939 – 1945 – Nicholas Stargardt
22. Civilizations – Laurent Binet
23. Adjective Classes: A Cross-linguistic Typology - R. M. W. Dixon & A. Aikhenvald (Eds.)
24. Linguistic Diversity in Space and Time – Johanna Nichols

25. How to behave badly in Elizabethan England - Ruth Goodman

313 pp.

Was just browsing in the (somewhat limited) English section of a bookshop downtown and came across this. Thought it looked like a worthwhile read and I was right. The author takes us into the world of the Elizabethans and examines the social mores and customs that people adhered to in everyday life in those days. The world she describes is both oddly familiar and utterly strange. One of the biggest differences was the way that people oriented to a strict social hierarchy and woe betide anyone who transgressed their station or failed to show due respect to their social superiors. People were so touchy about the rituals of courtesy and politeness. Fights could break out and blows be exchanged over minor breeches of etiquette.

Goodman covers a whole range of other points…the etiquette for eating and drinking, rude gestures, and offensive speech. Also touched on is the rules surrounding drinking and drunkenness. Some of the shenanigans by young chaps out on the town would be familiar to anyone who has ever enjoyed a Friday night out on the swally in modern British towns and cities.
There is also an interesting section on the uptake of smoking tobacco during this period. Even from the outset smoking was a fiercely divisive issue with adherents clustering in coffee shops and taverns to fog the air and the anti-tobacco side fulminating loudly against this ‘filthie and noisome habit.’ It is interesting to note that the churches never had any truck with smoking and banned it right from the outset.

In comparing modern and Elizabethan sensibilities, Goodman notes that our states of undress and exposure of skin would be scandalous to the Elizabethans. In those days going hatless was seen as a provocative and slightly deranged act. Our modern avoidance of spitting would be a bit harder to fathom for the 16th century person. Spitting was regarded as a necessary bodily function, like urination. Bad humours had to be expelled, don’t you know. Some discretion was preferred, but the actual act was not taboo. (I remember reading Dickens’ American notes and he was horrified by the hockle covered floors of anywhere and everywhere during his visit to the U.S. Times changed regarding expectoration sooner in England than America.)

Oh, and the influence of religion in everyday life. Imagine the most hardcore southern Baptist bible-thumper in the American south. They would be regarded as fairly middle of the road religionists in those days. Doing or saying anything that upset religious sensibilities in Elizabethan and Jacobean England was just asking for trouble.

An interesting book, well researched and immensely readable. Loved the olde world language quotes from the time that really bring the era to life.

Image