Deutscher, Guy 1969–

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Deutscher, Guy 1969–

PERSONAL: Born 1969. Education: Cambridge University, Ph.D.

ADDRESSES: Home—Amsterdam, Netherlands. Office—Leiden University, TCMO-Assyriology, PB 9515, 2300 RA Leiden, Netherlands. E-mail[email protected].

CAREER: Writer and educator. St. John's College, Cambridge, Cambridge, England, research fellow in historical linguistics; University of Leiden, Leiden, Netherlands, instructor in department of languages and cultures of ancient Mesopotamia.


Syntactic Change in Akkadian: The Evolution of Sentential Complementation, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2000.

The Unfolding of Language: An Evolutionary Tour of Mankind's Greatest Invention, Metropolitan Books (New York, NY), 2005.

Contributor to books, including Stability, Variation, and Change of Word-Order Patterns over Time, edited by R. Sornicola, E. Poppe and A. Shisha Halevy, John Benjamins (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 2000; Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, edited by K. Brown, Elsevier, 2005; and Complement Clauses and Complement Strategies, edited by R. M.W. Dixon and A.Y. Aikhenvald, Oxford University Press, 2006. Contributor to journals, including Folia Linguistica Historica, Studies in Language, Orientalia, and Journal of Linguistics, and to periodicals, including New York Times and London Times.

SIDELIGHTS: Guy Deutscher, a linguist at Leiden University, is the author of two books. The Unfolding of Language: An Evolutionary Tour of Mankind's Greatest Invention is an academically oriented work geared toward a popular audience. In the book, Deutscher leads the reader on a survey of the history of language, examining topics such as orthography, pronunciation, and the development of syntax. A critic for Kirkus Reviews found Deutscher's book "witty, thought-provoking, [and] constantly surprising." Manya Chylinski, writing in Library Journal, commended the author's "painstaking research" but warned readers that The Unfolding of Language could be a "tough read." In his review for the London Telegraph Online, Nicholas Bagnall stated he found some passages "too obscure," but further commented that the book "really ought to be read, despite such longueurs, by anyone who persists in complaining that the English language is going to the dogs." As a reviewer for Publishers Weekly concluded: "Deutscher's entertaining writing and his knack for telling a good tale about how words develop offer a delightful and charming story of language."



Kirkus Reviews, February 15, 2005, review of The Unfolding of Language: An Evolutionary Tour of Mankind's Greatest Invention, p. 208.

Library Journal, May 15, 2005, Manya Chylinski, review of The Unfolding of Language, p. 117.

Publishers Weekly, March 21, 2005, review of The Unfolding of Language, p. 43.


Leiden University Web site, (June 29, 2005), brief profile of author.

Telegraph Online, (May 8, 2005), Nicholas Bagnall, review of The Unfolding of Language.

Unfolding of Language Web site, (June 20, 2005).