David Crystal, world authority on the English language, presents a lively and factual account of the rise of English as a global language and explores the whys and wherefores of the history, current status and future potential of English as the international language of communication. English has been lauded as the most 'successful' language ever, with 1,500 million speakers worldwide; but Crystal avoids taking sides and tells the story in a measured but engaging way, backed by facts and figures. This new edition of his classic book contains extra sections (on subjects including the linguistic features of New Englishes, the future of English as a world language, and the possibility of an English 'family' of languages), footnotes and a full bibliography. There are updates throughout. This is a book for anyone of any nationality concerned with English: teachers, students, language professionals, politicians, general readers and anyone with a love of the language.
DAVID CRYSTAL is one of the world's foremost authorities on language. He is author of the hugely successful Cambridge encyclopedia of language (1987; second edition 1997), Cambridge encyclopedia of the English language (1995), Language death (2000), Language and the Internet (2001) and Shakespeare's words (2002, with Ben Crystal). An internationally renowned writer, journal editor, lecturer and broadcaster, he received an OBE in 1995 for his services to the study and teaching of the English language. His edited books include several editions of The Cambridge encyclopedia (1990–2000) and related publications, Words on words (2000, with Hilary Crystal) and The new Penguin encyclopedia (2002).