Linguistics - Advanced
Experienced conlangers need a place to turn to when they encounter questions when working on their projects. The topic of "what good books are there for..." is a familiar topic on listservs and forums. The titles here have been culled from a number of recommendations and previous lists from a variety of sources.
Beside many items in The Conlanger's Library are links to vendor affiliate sites (Book Depository and Indie Bound ). The Language Creation Society receives a portion of all the purchases made through these sites. We have removed, at present, links to Amazon.com pages. In the event that Amazon reinstates its affiliate program in California, we will consider re-adding Amazon.com links to the items on these pages.
There is also a WorldCat search link available to assist readers in locating resources through their local library.
Contact The Conlanging Librarian at library -at- conlang -dot- org with suggestions for additions to the library.
For a sustained programme of reading in linguistics:
Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics (red textbook series)
There are numerous titles in this series including volumes concentrating on everything from Semantics to Neurolinguistics. These books are aimed at undergraduates, so are fitting for the dedicated (and inquisitive) conlanger. Specific volumes in the series recommended by conlangers on the Conlang listserv: Mood and Modality and Grammatical Roles and Relations by F.R. Palmer; Aspect and Tense by Bernard Comrie; and Gender by G.G. Corbett.
For an in-depth look at individual languages and families:
Cambridge Language Surveys (green series from Cambridge University Press)
There are numerous titles in this series highlighting everything from Australian languages to Pidgins and Creoles.
Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things: What Categories Reveal About the Mind
University Of Chicago Press
(April 15, 1990)
An in-depth look at how the mind divides language into categories. A classic work whose title comes from a classification in Dyirbal, an indigenous Australian language.
Timothy Shopen, editor
Language Typology and Syntactic Description
3 Volumes: Clause Structure ; Complex Constructions ; Grammatical Categories and the Lexicon
'This unique three-volume survey brings together a team of leading scholars to explore the syntactic and morphological structures of the world's languages. Clearly organized and illustrated with examples, Volume III covers typological distinctions in word formation, lexical typologies, inflectional morphology, gender and noun classes, aspect, tense, mood, and lexical nominalization.'
Semantics: Primes and Universals
Oxford University Press (May 9, 1996)
From the product description: Conceptual primitives and semantic universals are the cornerstones of a semantic theory which Anna Wierzbicka has been developing for many years. Semantics: Primes and Universals is a major synthesis of her work, presenting a full and systematic exposition of that theory in a non-technical and readable way.