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Oy Vey: Yiddish Has a Problem

Oy Vey: Yiddish Has a Problem | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
The language is mostly spoken by Orthodox Jews who want to set themselves apart from the modern world. Is there a future for Yiddish in other communities?
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Globalization and English as a lingua Franca present challenges for languages not spoken by large group

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When Did Peking Become Beijing and Persia Become Iran? We Have the Data

When Did Peking Become Beijing and Persia Become Iran? We Have the Data | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
Where politics and language collide: how place names change over time.
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What is in a name?

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Business Languages In Africa

Business Languages In Africa | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

"The Main Languages of Business in Africa."


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Amy Marques's curator insight, April 24, 11:30 AM

It's interesting to see years after colonialism and imperialism there the nations it colonized are still having contact with their 'mother country'. For example the countries of Angola and Mozambique and Guinea-Bissau gained independence in the 1970's and they still trade with Portugal and are dependent on one an other to an extent, and language definitely has something to do with it.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 12:46 PM

Africa is a huge continent filled with tons of countries. Language is widespread even within a city or town. Throughout Africa, there is no denying that the languages vary drastically. All the languages however are among the most spoken languages in the world. More business for Africa!

The ServiceMag's curator insight, September 9, 9:30 AM

The 'Other' category is much underestimated. Therefore, incorrect!

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Lexical Distance Among the Languages of Europe

Lexical Distance Among the Languages of Europe | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

  This chart shows the lexical distance — that is, the degree of overall vocabulary divergence — among the major languages of Europe. The size of each circle represents the number of speakers ...

 

And yes, English has its deepest roots in German...the French aspects were tacked on after the Norman Conquest.


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ethanrobert's curator insight, March 19, 7:20 AM

This is a wonderful map that truly shows language families and their roots. In Europe, I was rather surprised when I seen that the Romance branch was much larger than that of the Germanic. All of the ancient Germanic groups such as the Jutes, Angols, and the Saxons were well versed in combat. Considering they conquered much of Western Europe, how is it that the Romance group is bigger than the Germanic? Also, in Eastern Europe, the Albanian language has no reason to exist. In a region dominated by the Slavic group with no environmental barriers, the Albanian language should not exist.~Ethan.

Arya Okten's curator insight, March 27, 7:33 PM

Unit II

Ness Crouch's curator insight, March 28, 5:43 PM

This isn't my normal area of interest but I found this fascinating!

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Cultural Syncretism

Cultural Syncretism | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 8, 2013 5:39 AM

I found this image on social media from a great geography teacher (link to his site--looking for APHG group activities?  Try this).  This picture taken at the Jewish Community Center (JCC) in Memphis, TN shows an intrguing linguistic combination that I had never imagined before.  This is referred to as cultural syncretism, where two or more cultures or cultural traits combine together to make something new.  Globalization and migration are making more cultural combinations than we've ever seen before in this human mosaic we call home.


Tags: language, culture, the South, APHG, religion, landscape.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, December 10, 2013 9:01 PM

Interesting 


Lauren Sellers's curator insight, May 28, 8:02 PM

This was taken in Memphis, TN. I liked how it mixes the religion with the surrounding culture and dialect, really interesting and shows that people can have the same religion and different backgrounds. 

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Can you speak Esperanto? - CNN.com Video

CNN's Monita Rajpal takes a look at the origins Esperanto and some of the world's most famous Esperantists.
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21 Accents

Here's a little tour of 21 accents in one take. Love the fun challenge of switching between them fluidly. Props to All of these places and their multi-accent...
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Accents from many countries/cities. She is good.

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Where 60 Million People in the U.S. Don't Speak English at Home

Where 60 Million People in the U.S. Don't Speak English at Home | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
The number is on the rise.
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Not All English is the Same

Not All English is the Same | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

"22 Maps That Show How Americans Speak English Totally Differently From Each Other"


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Amy Marques's curator insight, February 6, 1:29 PM

These 22 maps are a great representation of how linguistically different the United States truly is. Depending  where you are from I the US shows how you say something differently. For example, in the Northeast and South, people pronounce the word caramel in two words, "cara and mel" and in the west and west coast it is pronounced " car-mel". Even the word crayon is pronounced differently depending where you live. 

Giselle Figueroa's curator insight, September 10, 12:21 PM

Is very funny how Americans speak English differently from each other living in the same country.

Amanda Morgan's curator insight, September 18, 9:41 AM

As someone from RI, whenever I travel I always hear something about either my accent or my pronunciation of certain words. These maps and their trends were interesting to observe. I was surprised to see that crawfish was so different across the map.

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Ancient Eurasiatic ‘superfamily’ found at root of European and Asian languages

Ancient Eurasiatic ‘superfamily’ found at root of European and Asian languages | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

"Languages spoken by billions of people across Europe and Asia are descended from an ancient tongue uttered in southern Europe at the end of the last ice age, according to research.  The claim, by scientists in Britain, points to a common origin for vocabularies as varied as English and Urdu, Japanese and Itelmen, a language spoken along the north-eastern edge of Russia.  The ancestral language, spoken at least 15,000 years ago, gave rise to seven more that formed an ancient Eurasiatic 'superfamily', the researchers say. These in turn split into languages now spoken all over Eurasia, from Portugal to Siberia."

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Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave?

Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave? | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
Africa may have achieved independence, but the old colonial ties are still important as France’s decision to send troops to Mali to fight Islamist extremists shows.

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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, March 25, 9:59 AM

Colonial ties are still very prevalent due to Europe's dependence upon the resources of Africa. European countries like England and France invest billions in Africa, not to help those African nations, but to build infrastructure for resource extraction or to keep governments stable. Though the true exploitation of Africa has ended, the current situation certainly has the ring of exploitation as the people of Europe enjoy the diamonds and chocolate harvested by the multitudes of impoverished people of Africa.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 1:04 PM

Colony powers are still located within Africa. Just because Africa is technically independent doesn't mean that British Colonial power isn't still in place.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, September 11, 11:11 AM

unit 4

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Twitter Languages in London

Twitter Languages in London | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

This map is a fantastic geovisualization that maps the spatial patterns of languages used on the social media platform Twitter.  This map was in part inspired by a Twitter map of Europe.  While most cities would be expected to be lingistically homogenous, but London's cosmopolitan nature and large pockets of immigrants.

   

Tags: social media, language, neighborhood, visualization, cartography.


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Betty Denise's comment, November 7, 2012 10:13 AM
Thank you – again – for your tremendous partnership
Ursula O'Reilly Traynor's comment, December 14, 2012 6:29 PM
thanks for this! we have shared!
Ursula O'Reilly Traynor's comment, December 14, 2012 6:29 PM
thanks for this! we have shared!
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Mapping Language: Limited English Proficiency in America

Mapping Language: Limited English Proficiency in America | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
Although English is America’s common tongue, immigrants’ efforts to learn it present challenges to institutions and individuals alike. These graphics compare regions, schools, and communities where newcomers have settled to learn and integrate.

 

The interactive map feature of language and the accompanying spatial patterns reveal much about the major migrational patterns in the United States.

 

Tags: Migration, USA, statistics, language, immigration, unit 2 population.


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The Geography of Language

"Over the course of human history, thousands of languages have developed from what was once a much smaller number. How did we end up with so many? And how do we keep track of them all? Alex Gendler explains how linguists group languages into language families, demonstrating how these linguistic trees give us crucial insights into the past."


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Catherine Smyth's curator insight, June 2, 4:45 PM

Not really primary geography but so interesting!

Woodstock School's curator insight, June 4, 3:05 AM

A good teaching tool for explaining the diversity of languages.

Adilson Camacho's curator insight, June 12, 6:38 PM

Geografia Cultural

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The English empire

The English empire | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
YANG YUANQING, Lenovo’s boss, hardly spoke a word of English until he was about 40: he grew up in rural poverty and read engineering at university. But when Lenovo...
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The spread of English as the lingua franca of business

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Gambia president rejects English language

Gambia president rejects English language | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
President's decision to shift official language from English to local language comes months after its decision to withdraw from the Commonwealth

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Amy Marques's curator insight, April 24, 11:27 AM

I think it's great that the President of Gambia wants to change the official language from English to the local language. The West African country announced it is withdrawing from the Commonwealth which is a group of 54 nations which made up largely of former British colonies, hence why these colonies speak English. If the people want aren't using English primarily and they're using another language, that is rooted to the culture of Gambia, then maybe it's time to consider having two official languages.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 12:49 PM

Gambian president wants his nation to have a sense of identity. Conforming to the English language and making that the primary language of the country has set a drawback on what he wants his country to be. He says they should speak their local language and that to be a leader you don't have to speak English. I think speaking the local language is a great idea but also knowing the English language is very beneficial.

Lauren Sellers's curator insight, May 28, 10:14 PM

culturally it would be a good idea to switch the official language to a local language that way their langueages dont become dead languages but economically its not a good idea because Americas dominate language is English and it is also an economic power.

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How Y’all, Youse and You Guys Talk

How Y’all, Youse and You Guys Talk | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
What does the way you speak say about where you’re from? Answer the questions to see your personal dialect map.
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Twenty-five question survey on regional dialects

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(Serbo-)Croatian: A Tale of Two Languages

(Serbo-)Croatian: A Tale of Two Languages | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

"What language is spoken in Croatia? Croatian is now the 24th official language of the European Union, but there are disagreements about whether it’s a distinct language or just a slightly different dialect of Serbian. Serbian nationalists believe that everyone shares the same language, “Serbian”. But many Croats persist in making their national language as distinct from Serbian as possible. Listeners will discover how politics is intruding on language, and how it is changing the map of linguistic patterns in unexpected ways."

 

Tags: language, Croatia, political, podcast, Maps 101.


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CCRES's comment, November 6, 2013 1:06 AM
Baška tablet , Croatian: Bašćanska ploča, pronounced is one of the first monuments containing an inscription in the Croatian recension of the Church Slavonic language, dating from the year 1100.
Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 1, 12:03 PM

This part of the world has been so mixed up for so long. Each country wants their own identity, language and name but the borders are continually changing. Although these fights seem petty to me (an American) I am sure they mean quite a bit to the people living in these areas. National identity is very important to humans in general. Where we come from is the basis of who we are.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 6:51 AM

Languages are sometimes a mystery to countries but mostly has to do with who's occupying these countries and where the countries are located.  Croatia is only a few countries away from Serbia so the fact that the language they speak may/not be close to Serbian is no surprise. Migration and other factors contribute to the language developed in specific countries.

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Regional slang words | Geography Education

Regional slang words | Geography Education | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
How many of these 107 regional slang words do you use? This week on Mental Floss' YouTube information session, author and vlogger John Green explains 107 slang words specific to certain regions.
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Fun Tour of American Accents | Amy Walker

A Fun tour of American Accents. How To Do an American Accent - Bonus! You Did It! Well done. :-) Bonus from a FUN, in-depth, private tutorial series with acc...
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Great look at American Accents by region

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Marianne Riddile's curator insight, February 14, 4:46 AM

Motorhomers not only travel to a variety of locations around the country but they get to meet a wide variety of people from various locales. You will recognize these various accents and it might be fun to locate the tutorials she mentions on YouTube.

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Do Geography and Altitude Shape the Sounds of a Language?

Do Geography and Altitude Shape the Sounds of a Language? | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
Languages that evolve at high elevations are more likely to include a sound that's easier to make when the air is thinner, new research shows (Do geography and altitude shape the sounds of a language?
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American English Dialects

American English Dialects | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it

There are 8 major English dialect areas in North America, presented on the map. These are shown in blue, each with its number, on the map and in the Dialect Description Chart below, and are also outlined with blue lines on the map.  The many subdialects are shown in red on the map and in the chart, and are outlined with red lines on the map. All of these are listed in the margins of the map as well.


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Fotografie Turismo Italia's comment, May 17, 2013 2:07 AM
I don't know this problem, sorry.
Ms. Harrington's curator insight, May 22, 2013 9:16 AM

Very cool map with links to video/audio of the local dialect.

Leslie Creath's curator insight, May 27, 2013 10:41 AM

This is fascinating to me

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The Geography of Chechnya

The Geography of Chechnya | Mrs. Watson's Class | Scoop.it
The Caucasus region, dominated by the imposing Great Caucasus mountain range and stretching between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, has long been known as one of the world’s ethnically and linguistically most diverse areas.

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Rebecca Farrea's curator insight, October 17, 2013 12:01 PM

Using this article helps to teach ourselves, students, and others about particular places in the world that are unknown or very little known.  We can use articles such as this one to be less prejudiced and more apt to think about these places of the world in a different context rather than just a negative, terrorism-related one.

Marissa Roy's curator insight, November 19, 2013 7:16 AM

Most Americans had never heard Chechnya before the Boston bombing in April 2013. Now, most think that it is full of America-hating terriosts. However, Chechnya is so very complex and diverse a place, that it is ludacris to think that. Over 100 languages are spoken in the country. The southern half speaks languages such as Georgian, Svan and Mingrelian. Turkish, Iranian and Chechens are the languages you will probably hear in the North. Another misconception is that there are many Christians in Chechnya as well as Muslims. This country is made up of so many different groups, it is incredible. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, March 3, 6:27 AM

It is amazing to consider such a small area (the size of New England) could hold such a vast area of languages.  The mountainous region certainly helps in creating such diversity as it isolated villages from each other in the ages before modern communication and travel.

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Belgians divided by language barrier

Failure by Belgium's political parties to form a government since elections in June have prompted fears of a split in the tiny European country. Al Jazeera's...

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 12, 2013 7:35 AM

This 2007 video is dated, but many of the same issues are still seen today.  This video briefly lays out the cultural context for the political divisions between the French-speaking Walloons and the Dutch-speaking Flemish populations of Belgium.  For a longer video on the topic, see this half hour video.


Tags: language, culture, Belgium, unit 4 political, Europe, devolution, unit 3 culture.  

BTC's comment, February 12, 2013 7:46 AM
Interesting, but the reality is much more complex....
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Linguistic Geography: My Fair Lady

This is a most decidedly dated reference for pop culture, but a great movie for making explicit the idea that the way we speak is connected to where we've lived (also a good clip to show class differences as well as gender norms). The clip highlights many principles and patterns for understanding the geography of languages.

 

Tags: Language, class, gender, culture, historical, London, unit 3 culture and place.


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João Carreira's comment, September 4, 2012 10:24 AM
...Even as portuguese, I apreceated it very much. Thank you.
Don Brown Jr's comment, September 6, 2012 6:30 AM
This movie clip does demonstrate how language is connected not only to space and location but individual or group experiences as well. The languages used by the upper and lower orders in addressing each other or an “outsider” are very distinct within this film. Therefore if you’re socioeconomic status effects the way you speak then perhaps the type of langue you use can indicate what different social groups within a society consider comical or entertaining such as dance and music?
Jess Pitrone's comment, April 29, 2013 6:18 PM
My Fair Lady has always been one of my favorite movies, and it really sparked my interest in linguistics and accents. Not only does your accent define where you’re from physically, but it defines where you’re from socially, as well. While Eliza Doolittle is from the same country, region, and city as Prof Higgins and the people coming out of the theater, she sounds completely different. Right away, her speech gives away what kind of social background she comes from.
Similarly to the “When did Americans lose their British accents?” article, this article helps relay how accents can help define a physical area, and it also shows a connection between accent and economics. Accent is both a cultural and an economic part of geography.