Baylor University Alumni Write Book on Idioms

Nov. 20, 1996

by Alan Hunt

A new book on idioms may prove useful to those interested in learning more about the way Americans use the English language, especially expressions associated with parts of the body. That's the opinion of the book's authors and Baylor University alumni Dr. Eugene Baker of Waco and his brother, John Baker of Colorado Springs, Colo.

Titled Body English, the 256-page soft cover book is published by E. Whitman & Associates of Waco. The volume contains more than 500 idiomatic expressions related to 55 distinctive parts of the body. In addition, the book has nearly 100 humorous illustrations created by Waco artist Vern Herschberger.

"The book should prove interesting to anyone desiring to improve communication skills, especially foreign college students or businessmen for whom English is a second language," said Eugene Baker, former Baylor chief of staff and a 1958 Baylor graduate. "It also can be a useful tool for anyone, young or old, who desires to use the English language more effectively and perhaps better understand the American fascination with idiomatic expressions," he added.

Eugene Baker is the author of several books, including an illustrated history of Baylor and biographies of the university's founders. He served on the Baylor staff from 1976-1995. John Baker, a 1940 Baylor graduate, is a noted lecturer and linguist with a specialty in the Russian language. A former educator, FBI agent, business executive and human resources manager, he is an accomplished poet and has written many theatrical pieces and adapted several traditional literary works for the stage.

Eugene Baker says this is the first book that groups idioms in this manner while providing illustrations and explanatory information.

The authors are currently writing another idiom book and have plans for a third. The next volume is titled Animal English and is expected to be published next spring.

For additional information, contact Eugene Baker at 756-3477.

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