This guide examines the concepts that most often confound ESL students, whose confusion can generally be reduced to one very basic question: Why does English work that way? Focusing on the grammar of conversational speech, the book goes beyond simple description of the parts of speech, tenses and modes, and other topics of instruction to consider the cultural differences in language use (for native speakers of Japanese, for instance, the painting may be on the wall--but the wall is also on the painting) and even the neuroscience of our speech patterns. With 23 illustrations, an annotated bibliography and list of online resources, a glossary, and end-of-chapter exercises, this book equips instructors and advanced students to explain everyday language choices that stymie non-native speakers.
Richard McGarry is the author of two books on sociolinguistics, The Subtle Slant and Students as Ethnographers, as well as numerous journal articles on intercultural communication, error correction and English for special purposes. He has published short stories in The Cold Mountain Review and Hackwriters, has a novel, Books on Tape, and is writing a second. He lives in Boone, North Carolina.