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That's the Way it Crumbles: The American Conquest of the English Language [9781781256688]

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'Engel is a wonderfully wry comic writer.' - Guardian

Are we tired of being asked to take the elevator, sick of being offered fries and told about the latest movieYeah. Have we noticed the sly interpolation of Americanisms into our everyday speech? It's a no-brainer. And ar3e we outraged? Hell, yes. But do we do anything? Too much hassle. Until now.

In That's the Way It Crumbles Matthew Engel presents a call to arms against the linguistic impoverishment that happens when one language dominates another. With dismay and wry amusement, he traces the American invasion of our language from the early days of the New World, via the influence of Edison, the dance hall and the talkies, right up to the Apple- ad Microsoft-dominated present day, and explores the fate of others languages trying to fend off linguistic takeover bids. It is not the Americans' fault, more the result of their talent for innovation and our own indifference.

He explains how America's cultural supremacy affects British gestures, celebrations and way of life, and how every paragraph and conversation includes words the British no longer think of as Americanisms. Part battle cry, part love song, part elegy, this book celebrates the strange, the banal, the precious and the endangered parts of our uncommon common language.


'Wry, rueful, funny, packed with knowledge ... it is simply the most enjoyable commentary on today's England that could be imagined.' - Sunday Times

'Highly personal and very funny' - London Review of Books

'The great pleasure in the book - for Engel as much as the reader - is in his love of the entertaining factual nugget' - Financial Times

'Immensely enjoyable' - Guardian

AUTHOR: Matthew Engel is a journalist and author. He writes regularly for the Guardian and Financial Times, among other publications, and was the editor of the Wisden Cricketers' Almanack for twelve years. He is also a baseball enthusiast. His books include Eleven Minutes Late: A Train Journey to the Soul of Britain,Extracts from the Red Notebooks and Engel's England: Thirty-nine Counties, One Capital and One Man (Profile, 2014) [9781846685729].
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Matthew Engel
Profile Books Ltd
464 Grams
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