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.
Not One-Off Britishisms: Flat
Oddly it seems Americans use flat when they want to sound posh. Here in the UK it’s the other way round: apartment sounds far swankier.
The red-hot history of the word ‘brand’
Brand has developed steadily from its fiery Anglo-Saxon roots into two almost contradictory meanings – sometimes denoting identity and reputation, and sometimes a mark of shame.
Playing it safe is a dangerous game
There are maybe five of these “rules” that make me twitch with distaste when I see them broken. But so what?
Books, dictionaries, words and language
The battle over the words used to describe migrants
“Migrant used to have quite a neutral connotation,” explains Alexander Betts, director of the Refugee Studies Centre at Oxford University.
“Jungle” Migrant Camp in Calais Now Boasts Library
A makeshift library has opened in the “Jungle” migrant camp in Calais, northern France. Called “Jungle Books” it is supplied by voluntary donations and staffed by a stream of volunteers sympathetic to the plight of the refugees.
It’s a while since we’ve linked to one of these entertaining etymological videos, so here’s one about the history of the word bug.