Saturday, October 01, 2005


The Language Guy

Commentary on how language is used and abused in advertising, politics, the law, and other areas of public life. You can think of it as a linguistic self defense course in which you and I prepare ourselves to do battle with the forces of linguistic evil.

Mike Geis

Location: Columbus, Ohio, United States

After receiving a B. A. in Philosophy from Rice University, I moved on to M.I.T., where I got my Ph. D. in Theoretical Linguistics. I worked at the University of Illinois for five years and then left to teach and do research at The Ohio State University until I retired in 1995. Perhaps because of my early interest in philosophy, I switched my focus from theoretical linguistics to more humanistic pursuits in the last half of my career, applying what I had learned as a theortical linguist to such areas as advertising, politics, journalism, the law, and conversation. I wrote "The Language of Television Advertising," "The Language of Politics," and "Speech Acts and Conversational Interaction." I also wrote and consulted on linguistic issues arising in such legal domains as trademark law, deceptive advertising, and jury instructions in death penalty cases.


A lot of interesting links which lead to


A blog about keyboarding in diverse scripts, literacy and digital literacy, and random quotes selected from the history of writing system theory.

A guide to written language

From here, a bunch of language course sites, many of them substantially free.

Tried (learning from scratch with book and CDs but wanting a change)

BBC Spanish
is very well done with sound, though is just designed to give a few situations: not got 'buying a ticket' and 'the cash machines' so studiously copied them down knowing they would be used.

Spanish Online
Mostly a taster for the course but this was not in my own book :

Exploring "To Be" Verbs in Spanish: Ser and Estar


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