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Language and words in the news – 16th December, 2016

© Ioannis Kounadeas / Fotolia.comThis 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.

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Global English

-ise or -ize? Is -ize American?
In the first of two posts, Jeremy Butterfield considers the vexed question of words that can be spelled -ise or -ize. Which is American, which is British? or can both be used in either variety?

Language change and slang

Words of the year 2016: Fritinancy edition
This post marks my eighth annual foray into word-of-the-year (WOTY) speculation. My first such summing-up, in 2009, included birther, Tea Party, and FAIL, among other lexical units.

Words, books and language

We went in search of the world’s hardest language
English is pretty simple: verbs hardly conjugate; nouns pluralise easily (just add “s”, mostly) and there are no genders to remember.

A Bouquet of Eponyms
Like most Americans, I gathered with my family on Monday night for a lavish meal to celebrate National Poinsettia Day.

Yes, Seriously: The Name of the Year is Boaty McBoatface
Is nothing sacred? 2016 was the year that answered the question with a resounding “Nope.”

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Liz Potter

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