Tidbits on languages and cultures
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Tidbits on languages and cultures
Thoughts on language and language learning
Curated by Noreen L
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How diplomats learn so many new languages in a short amount of time

How diplomats learn so many new languages in a short amount of time | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
If you've ever wanted to master a new language, take a lesson from the pros — foreign diplomats.
Noreen L's insight:

Intensive study, combined with motivation and need=successful & rapid language learning!

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How the English language became such a mess

How the English language became such a mess | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
James Harbeck investigates how the English language became such a mess – and why we only have ourselves to blame.
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Mind your language ! Swearing around the world

Mind your language ! Swearing around the world | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
What makes a word profane, and how does cursing vary from place to place? James Harbeck explains. Warning: contains very strong language.

Via David M, Monica Mirza
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As a language learner, I've come across swear words in other languages that to me, as an English speaker, sound horrifying! But to the native speakers of said language, it's nothing out of the ordinary....

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The Internet, where languages go to die? | Al Jazeera America

The Internet, where languages go to die? | Al Jazeera America | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Forget the triumphant universalism of the Web; 95 percent of languages have almost no presence online
Noreen L's insight:

Stronger languages get stronger, and lesser-known ones become lesser-known?

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Undivided by a Common Language – Lingua Franca - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Undivided by a Common Language – Lingua Franca - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Noreen L's insight:

Very interesting article about the differences in Am Eng and Br Eng.  Is the divide really that great?  Or maybe people are just exaggerating it in order to solidify identity?  As a Canadian caught in the middle, the differences seem to be more of a cultural rather than linguistic separation.  What about Can Eng, Aus Eng, Scot Eng, Irish Eng, NZ Eng etc--where do we all fit in??

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Are 'grammar Nazis' ruining the English language? - Telegraph

Are 'grammar Nazis' ruining the English language?  - Telegraph | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Split infinitives make them shudder and they’d never end a sentence with a preposition. But linguist Geoffrey Pullum has a message for all grammar pedants: you're wrong
Noreen L's insight:

An interesting article about "correct English"--who's right, the traditionalists and their grammatical rules, or those who accept the changes English has encountered over the years?

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University Heritage Language Programs on the Rise - Higher Education

University Heritage Language Programs on the Rise - Higher Education | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
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Interesting read about heritage language learners--never heard of the term but it applies to me!

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Learn 40 languages for free!

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Various links to resources for learning a variety of languages.  Good for students of English and other languages.

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The Language Consultant: How Music Can Teach You a Foreign Language

The Language Consultant: How Music Can Teach You a Foreign Language | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
language learning, polyglots and language translation
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Learning through music, and other language resources

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How I learned a language in 22 hours

How I learned a language in 22 hours | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Could Joshua Foer really learn a language from scratch in less than three months?
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Excuse me, do you speak Chinglish? | Asia | DW.DE | 16.05.2012

Excuse me, do you speak Chinglish? | Asia | DW.DE | 16.05.2012 | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
There are more speakers of English in Asia than anywhere else. Once the language of the colonials, it has become the neutral language of business, a lingua franca for a vast continent whose economic might is growing.
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Etymology of Some Weird Idioms and Expressions

The English language is full of strange idioms, many of them that we use without understanding how that phrase came to being. I only have time for a few but I might add more later. Let’s take...
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A polyglot’s daily language workout | Babel No More

A polyglot’s daily language workout | Babel No More | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it

Fascinating book about these hyperpolyglots!  Recommended read for any language enthusiast!

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Meet the Canadian saving rare languages | Toronto Star

Meet the Canadian saving rare languages | Toronto Star | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
An internship in the Philippines spurred a 29-year-old Peterborough polyglot to help preserve a mother tongue.
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Endangered languages--can we save them before they disappear?

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Why isn’t ‘American’ a language?

Why isn’t ‘American’ a language? | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Britain and the US share a common language – but English is spoken and spelled very differently on either side of the Atlantic. James Harbeck finds out why.
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Las palabras más comunes en inglés que los españoles no tenemos ni idea de pronunciar - Noticias de Alma, Corazón, Vida

Las palabras más comunes en inglés que los españoles no tenemos ni idea de pronunciar  - Noticias de Alma, Corazón, Vida | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Las palabras más comunes en inglés que los españoles no tenemos ni idea de pronunciar La pronunciación del inglés trae de cabeza a miles de españoles. Es uno de los errores más difíciles de corregir, pero ensencial para hacerse entender
Noreen L's insight:

English words that Spanish speakers have the most trouble with!!

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How Much Money Learning a Foreign Language Is Worth

How Much Money Learning a Foreign Language Is Worth | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Besides the personal satisfaction of learning a new language, becoming fluent in a language could boost your lifetime earnings. The Economist takes a look at the return on investment of studying a foreign language, and which languages are the most valuable to learn, at least in monetary terms.
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The Secret to Learning French: Avoid the French | Language News

The Secret to Learning French: Avoid the French | Language News | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Sometimes it's best to practice speaking with non-native speakers, especially with French. "Itchy Feet" creator Malachi Rempen explains why that is.
Noreen L's insight:

In defence of the French, I have always found them to be very gracious and patient with my attempts at communication during my travels...

But the question is, is it better to try practising a language with a native or a non-native?  

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Language learning: what motivates us?

Language learning: what motivates us? | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
What happens in the brain when we try to learn a language can tell us a lot about what drives us to learn it in the first place. Lauren Razavi unpacks the science
Noreen L's insight:

Motivation in language learning

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10 foreign words we just can’t translate

10 foreign words we just can’t translate | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
It’s linguistically marvelous to be able to express a specific emotion so succinctly.
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History of The English Language (1943)

Acting as an excellent layman's introduction to the origins of one of the most common languages on the planet, 'History of the English Language' demonstrates how…
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Shawn Simpson's curator insight, June 9, 2013 3:44 AM

How English became English

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Très bien! Speaking two languages from childhood keeps brain in good shape as we age

Très bien! Speaking two languages from childhood keeps brain in good shape as we age | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Those who are fluent in more than one tongue are far better at switching between mental tasks in their sixties, say scientists from the University of Kentucky.
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Learn something new every day - Memrise

Learn something new every day - Memrise | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it

A program with tips and tricks for language learning, or any other kind of facts that you want to train your memory on.

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30 of your Britishisms used by Americans

30 of your Britishisms used by Americans | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
The Magazine's recent article about the Britishisation of American English prompted readers to respond with examples of their own.
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Travel literature review: A Geek in Japan - travel tips and articles - Lonely Planet

Travel literature review: A Geek in Japan - travel tips and articles - Lonely Planet | Tidbits on languages and cultures | Scoop.it
Read Travel literature review: A Geek in Japan for travel tips, advice, news and articles from all around the world by Lonely Planet...
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