I am a specialist in the English Language with a focus on the history of English. My particular areas of interest within English historical linguistics include historical pragmatic (pragmatic markers), grammaticalization and lexicalization, phrasal verbs and composite predicates, corpus linguistics, and aspectual studies.
I completed my PhD at the University of California, Berkeley in English with a Linguistics Emphasis in 1981 and have been working at UBC ever since.
I am currently the co-editor of English Language and Linguistics with Bernd Kortmann (Freiburg University), Patrick Honeybone (Edinburgh University), and Elene Seoane (Vigo University). Previously I co-edited the Journal of Historical Pragmatics with Dawn Archer (Manchester Metropolitan University).
I am the author of monographs on aspect, pragmatic markers, comment clauses, and lexicalization. In addition, I have co-authored two textbooks, one on the structure of Modern English (in its second edition) and one on the History of English (in its third edition) as well as edited a textbook in English historical linguistics. Edited collections include, among others, the two-volume English Historical Linguistics: An International Handbook (reprinted, with revisions in five paperback readers in 2017). Over my career, I have written over eighty chapters, articles, and conference papers.
For full details, see my personal website: http://blogs.ubc.ca/laurelbrinton/
Pragmatics in the History of English. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming.
The Evolution of Pragmatic Markers in English: Pathways to Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017.
The English Language: A Linguistic History (co-authored with Leslie K. Arnovick). 3rd edn. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2016.
The Linguistic Structure of Modern English. (co-authored with Donna M. Brinton) 2nd edn. of The Structure of Modern English: A Linguistic Introduction. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 2010.
The Comment Clause in English: Syntactic Origins and Pragmatic Development. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008. Issued in paperback, 2011.
Lexicalization and Language Change (co-authored with Elizabeth Closs Traugott). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. Translated into Japanese, Chinese, and Korean.
Pragmatic Markers in English: Grammaticalization and Discourse Functions.. Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 1996.
The Development of English Aspectual Systems: Aspectualizers and Post-verbal Particles. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. Digitally reprinted, 2009.
Edited collections (selected)
English Historical Linguistics: Perspectives and Approaches. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017.
English Historical Linguistics: An International Handbook (co-edited with Alexander Bergs). Handbücher zur Sprach- und Kommunkationswissenschaft, 34.1-34.2. Berlin and New York: De Gruyter Mouton, 2012. Reprinted as five readers in 2017.
Collocational and Idiomatic Aspects of Composite Predicates in the History of English (co-edited with Minoji Akimoto). Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 1999.
I teach undergraduate courses in the Structure of Modern English (ENGL 330 and 331), the History of the English Language (ENGL 318 and 319), Grammar and Usage (ENGL 321), English Corpus Linguistics (ENGL 324), and Stylistics (ENGL 322). With a colleague in Linguistics, I co-teach a first-year course on “Challenging Language Myths” (ENGL/LING 140).
My graduate seminars have concerned Historical Pragmatics, Pragmatic Markers, Literary Pragmatics, and Grammaticalization.