This post contains a selection of links related to language and words in the news. These can be items from the latest news, blog posts or interesting websites related to global English, language change, education in general, and language learning and teaching in particular.
Feel free to contact us if you would like to submit a link for us to include, or just add a comment to the post, with the link(s) you’d like to share.
Slang for the Ages
Slang often falls prey to what linguists call the “recency illusion”: I don’t remember using or hearing this word before, therefore this word is new (often followed by the Groucho Marx sentiment: “Whatever it is, I’m against it”).
I Should Of Known: Julian of Norwich and the Venerable History of Dodgy Auxiliary Verbs
I’m not wild about judging people for ignorance. But I’m even more fed up with people who assume grammar errors can only be made through ignorance of correct standard English.
English v Welsh: Which language is balderdash?
The fact that you may know more Welsh than you thought isn’t just balderdash…
When it comes to language learning, we simply do not know how students learn (we do not have any generally accepted theory of second language acquisition), let alone how they learn best.
Books, science, words and language
How did English become the language of science?
If a scientist is going to coin a new term, it’s most likely in English. And if they are going to publish a new discovery, it is most definitely in English. This article and related radio interview tell how this happened.
Read Slowly to Benefit Your Brain and Cut Stress
A new meaning for the term “slow reader”.
How Do Kissing, Snoring And Other Things Sound In Different Languages?
Kissing, eating, snoring and even camera shutters all sound very differently in different languages. James Chapman’s cute posters let us compare how different languages around the world express sounds.
What Can Linguistics Tell Us About Writing Better?
An interview with Stephen Pinker.
How using the word ‘how’ could get you sued
Corporate consultant Dov Seidman is suing the yoghurt manufacturer Chobani over its new slogan, “How matters”, which he says is “the foundation of my entire philosophy”.
The History of English in Ten Minutes
Does what it says on the tin, with a few good jokes along the way.
Places of Articulation
Here’s a useful graphic from Babel magazine showing the roles and functions of the speech articulators.