The World in Words

The World in Words is a podcast about languages and the people who speak them. What happens to the brain on bilingualism? Does it matter that so many languages are dying out? Should we fear the rise of global English? Is the United States losing its linguistic cohesion? Why are Chinese tech words so inventive? Why does Icelandic have so many cool swearwords? Patrick Cox and Nina Porzucki bring you stories from the world’s linguistic frontlines. Also at pri.org/language

https://www.pri.org/

Eine durchschnittliche Folge dieses Podcasts dauert 18m. Bisher sind 920 Folge(n) erschienen. Jeden Tag erscheint eine Folge dieses Podcasts
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The sci-fi of another language


In the West, we are used to sci-fi written by English-speakers who dream up English-speaking utopias and dystopias. Often in the final reel, humanity is saved by English-speaking heroes. So what should we expect from China's newly-thriving sci-fi scene? Does it have its own hopes and fears, specific to Chinese values and encoded in the language? Or is the sci-fi genre more global than local?


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 13 March 2019  27m
 
 

A family divided by English


When American Lynne Murphy says 'sure' to her British husband, he thinks she means 'not really.' After 18 years together, they still disagree-- and not just on 'sure.'


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 10 October 2018  21m
 
 

Poetry thieves


Some people see British poet Ira Lightman as a champion of poets whose verses he valiantly defends. Others view him as a blowhard who delights in ruining other people's reputations. Either way, the story of his poetry sleuthing might make you think differ


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 05 September 2018  36m
 
 

The holes between the dots


Some people believe technology will render Braille obsolete, that blind people will choose talking apps and audiobooks over embossed dots. Maybe, but Braille has been written off many times before. Each time, it has come back stronger. We trace Braille fr


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 08 August 2018  26m
 
 

How soccer became multilingual


Professional soccer used to export its English-language terminology, giving other languages words like 'penalty' and 'goal.' But now, the roles are reversed. English-speakers use expressions loaned from other languages to describe skill moves: 'rabona,' '


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 19 June 2018  15m
 
 

How has Basque survived?


Basque is a language isolate. Spoken in a region that spans northern Spain across the border into southern France, it is not part of the Indo-European language family. It’s not related to Spanish or French or German or Greek or any known language. The ori


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 31 May 2018  34m
 
 

Your brain on improv


Ever wondered about people who can improvise on stage? How the words seem to come so easily? Neuroscientist Charles Limb and comedian Anthony Veneziale did. First came the bromance, then Veneziale found himself improvising inside an fMRI machine.


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 24 May 2018  22m
 
 

My language is my home


Lea is a teenager born and raised in Japan. Her mother is Chinese, her father American. She speaks English, Mandarin and Japanese but isn’t sure which of them is her mother tongue. Karolina lives in Boston but grew up in several countries and speaks a bun


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 17 May 2018  21m
 
 

Abandoning your mother tongue


Alina Simone was born in the Soviet Union to Russian-speaking parents and now lives in New York. She initially raised her daughter to speak both English and Russian. So why did she give up on Russian and send her daughter to a Chinese immersion school?


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 09 May 2018  18m
 
 

If you could talk to the animals


Do you talk to your dog? Does your dog talk back to you? Dr. Doolittle’s dream of talking to the animals is one many of us can share. But what do all of those howls and growls mean and is it really language? This week on the podcast NOVA’s Ari Daniel join


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 25 April 2018  28m