[subscription channel 848]Best Linguistics podcasts — In-depth discussions on the study of language (updated July 5, 2015; image by Mark Ramsay)
Speculative Grammarian—the premier scholarly journal featuring research in the neglected field of satirical linguistics—is now available as an arbitrarily irregular audio podcast. Our podcast includes readings of articles from our journal, the occasional musical number or dramatical piece, and our talk show, Language Made Difficult. Language Made Difficult is hosted by the SpecGram LingNerds, and features our signature linguistics quiz—Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics—along with some discussion of recent-ish linguistic news and whatever else amuses us. Outtakes are provided.
Linguistic adventures with Helen Zaltzman for Radiotopia from PRX. http://theallusionist.org
Lexicon Valley is a podcast about language, from pet peeves, syntax, and etymology to neurolinguistics and the death of languages. Your hosts are Bob Garfield and producer Mike Vuolo. Part of the Panoply Network.
A Way with Words is a fun and funny public radio show about words, language, and how we use them. Hundreds of thousands of language-lovers around the world tune in each week to hear author Martha Barnette and dictionary editor Grant Barrett take calls about slang, grammar, English usage, old sayings, word origins, regional dialects, family expressions, and speaking and writing well. The program is a fresh look at the pleasures and delights of language and linguistics, words and speech, writing and reading. Language-learners, ESL, ELT, and TESOL folks will find it a treat. Call with your questions at *any time* in the U.S., Canada, or Mexico at 1-877-929-9673, in London at +44 20 7193 2113, in Mexico City at +52 55 8421 9771, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, on the web at http://waywordradio.org/, on Twitter at http://twitter.com/wayword, and via Skype to the user name "wayword."
Assorted stories from MR
The Spoken History of a Global Language
A weekly delve into linguistics and language, with Daniel Midgley and Ben Ainslie on RTRfm 92.1, Perth.
Conlangery is the podcast for language creators and enthusiasts of constructed languages.
A provider of FREE language learning audio. Learn one of 14 languages with us wherever you are, at home or on the go. Learn Italian, French, German, Hebrew, Yiddish, Turkish, English, Russian, Portuguese, Arabic, Chinese, Dutch and Greek. Get our app for android! Enjoy all the audio lessons released so far in all the languages with the Talk Parrot app http://goo.gl/Vvaewc Get all the Italian lessons with the Real life Italian app http://goo.gl/0TmfkF or choose all the Hebrew lesson with the Hebrew Steps app http://goo.gl/KQmdcq Our homepage http://www.talkparrot.com Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TalkParrot Google Plus https://plus.google.com/u/0/103533387214876649712/posts Twitter https://twitter.com/TalkParrotPod Skype user name "TalkParrotLive"
A Warning for Linguists; by Keith Slater; From Volume I, Number 2, of Babel, April 1990 — We in linguistics are well-accustomed, by now, to the fact that other disciplines—notably the “hard” sciences—regularly upstage us and grab all the glory in the public eye. Normally, this doesn’t, and shouldn’t, bother us in the least, because aside from the fact that the other guys get most of the NSF grants (to say nothing of the SDI grants) the consequences of this are minimal. They do their thing; we do ours. Everybody gets tenure. Now, however, a movement is underway, particularly among astrophysicists, of which we cannot afford to not sit up and take notice. (Read by Keith Slater.)
Linguistic Emissions Reduction Sought; by SpecGram Wire Services; From Volume CLIII, Number 1, of Speculative Grammarian, September 2007 — Sanaa, Yemen—Tempers flared at global climate talks today, as environmental and linguistic concerns met head-on. The dispute is about so-called “inefficient articulations,” which detractors say increase the metabolic cost of speaking, while offering no linguistic benefit to speakers. These articulations, such as the large transition between the uvular [q] and palatal [i] in the Arabic surname Sadeqi, require more metabolic energy than most other segmental transitions, and are contributing to global warming, detractors say. (Read by Jonathan van der Meer.)
Sometimes words can become your worst enemy. Clinical psychologist Jane Gregory tells how to defuse their power. There’s more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/behave. This episode concerns mental health, and the discussion nudges some topics which may not be comfortable for everybody. So if you have concerns, please sit this one out, and return in two weeks for the next Allusionist. Stay in touch! Tweet @allusionistshow, and convene at facebook.com/allusionistshow. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia.fm for PRX.org.
Grammar Cop; by Trey Jones; From Volume CLXXIII, Number 3, of Speculative Grammarian, July 2015 — Theirs know kneed two feere! / Grammer Kop iz hear!
Bob Garfield and Mike Vuolo discuss a mystery word or phrase with lexicographer Ben Zimmer. Join Slate Plus! Members get bonus segments, exclusive member-only podcasts, and more. Sign up for a free trial today at www.slate.com/podcastsplus. Twitter: @lexiconvalley Facebook: facebook.com/LexiconValley Email: email@example.com
This week on "A Way with Words": People in ancient times could be just as bawdy and colorful as we are today. To prove it, we found some graffiti written on the walls in the city of Pompeii, and found plenty of sex, arrogance and good old fashioned bathroom talk etched in stone. Plus, British rhyming slang makes its way to our televisions through police shows on PBS. And a dictionary for rock climbers gives us a fantastic word that anyone can use to describe a rough day. Also, spitting game, hornswoggling, two kinds of sloppy joes, peppy sad songs, and endearing names for grandma.FULL DETAILSWhen Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 A.D., parts of the ancient city of Pompeii remained intact, including the graffiti written on its walls. Much of what was written, not unlike today's bathroom etchings, is naughty and boastful, with people like Celadus the Thracian claiming to be the one who "makes the girls moan."A Tallahassee, Florida, mother who texted her daughter in a hurry accidentally asked about...
There are many words in our language that are just plain fun. But what exactly do they mean? University of Michigan English professor Ann Curzan did a...
Linguistics Nerd Camp—Marsha and Her Thesis; by Bethany Carlson; From Volume CLXI, Number 3, of Speculative Grammarian, April 2011 — Marsha and her thesis made a cute couple, but their friends worried that she was trying to change him. (Described by Keith Slater.)
One Hundred Words for Snowclone; by Claude Searsplainpockets and X. Izthunüblakk; From Volume CLXX, Number 2, of Speculative Grammarian, June 2014 — Any linguist worthy of attending SALT knows of the linguistic myth that eskimos have hundreds of words for snow. There was even some sort of vocabulary-related hoax or other about it back in the day. (Read by Claude Searsplainpockets.)
In this bonus episode we look at the etymology of certain words related to animals. We also examine words related to stuffing.
Dude! We're used to hearing the word "dude" applied to guys. But increasingly, young women use the word "dude" to address each other. Grant and Martha talk about linguistic research about the meaning and uses of "dude." Also, the story behind the term "eavesdropping." Originally, it referred to the act of standing outside someone's window. Plus: by and large, by the seat of your pants, drawing room, snowhawk, Netflix o'clock, glegged up, quarry, and that's all she wrote.FULL DETAILSYou have 30 cows, and 28 chickens. How many didn't? (Yep, that's the riddle: How many didn't?)Back in the 1930s, airplane pilots didn't have sophisticated instruments to tell them which way was up. When flying through clouds, they literally relied on changes in the vibrations in their seat to help them stay on course, flying by the seat of their pants. The phrase later expanded to mean "making it up as you go along."The idiom by and large, an idiom commonly known to mean "in general," actually combines two sailing...
We’ve got winning on the brain, but not because our lotto tickets finally paid off. It’s because of sports and Coach Carol Hutchins finding herself as...
Current Issues in Gastronomy; by Elan Dresher and Norbert Hornstein; From Lingua Pranca, June, 1978 — The mounting rumours that the noted linguist James D. McCawley has written an annotated translation of a Japanese cookbook on oriental cuisine have proven to be well founded. A usually consistent informant has brought it to our attention that a major American publisher is preparing the final galleys, and the author’s students and friends are already hailing it as an “underground classic”. (Read by Les Strabismus.)
Cartoon Theories of Linguistics—Part 九; by Phineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D.; From Volume CLIV, Number 1, of Speculative Grammarian, May 2008 — Lexicostatistics vs. Glottochronology ("Insightful!" ... "Balderdash!") (Described by Keith Slater.)
The ’Trilaa Counting Song; A ’Trilaa Folk Song; From Volume CLX, Number 2, of Speculative Grammarian, November 2010 — ʙ̥ r̥ ʀ̥ ɦ / 1 2 4 8 / ʀ r ʙ ʙ̥͡ʀ̥ ʙ̥͡r̥ / 12 10 9 5 3 (Performed by Trey Jones.)
Emoji allow communication without words. Could emoji be the universal language of the 21st century? Matt Gray and Tom Scott, founders of the emoji-only messaging platform emoj.li, talk through the pitfalls; and History Today’s Dr Kate Wiles finds the 500- and 5,000-year-old precedents for emoji. CONTENT WARNING: this episode contains one category B swear word, plus reference to penises growing on trees. There’s more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/emoji, including a fine selection of medieval marginalia. Tweet @allusionistshow, and convene at facebook.com/allusionistshow. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia.fm for PRX.org.
Bob Garfield and Mike Vuolo discuss what it means that language has a "positivity bias." This week's episode is sponsored by Blue Apron, the new service that delivers all the ingredients you need to make incredible meals at home. Discover a better way to cook. Visit BlueApron.com/lexicon to get your first two meals free. Join Slate Plus! Members get bonus segments, exclusive member-only podcasts, and more. Sign up for a free trial today at www.slate.com/podcastsplus. Twitter: @lexiconvalley Facebook: facebook.com/LexiconValley Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For language lovers, it's like New Year's, Fourth of July, and the Super Bowl all rolled into one: The brand-new online edition of the Dictionary of American Regional English. Martha and Grant explain what all the fuss is about. Plus, the debate over that meal in a glass container: some call it a hot dish, while others say it's a casserole. And just when did we start using the terms boyfriend and girlfriend? Also in this episode: painters and artists, vaping, chamber pots, the lucky phrase rabbit, rabbit, and a news quiz in limericks!FULL DETAILSLanguage lovers, rejoice! The Dictionary of American Regional English is now available online. This massive collection of regional words and phrases across the United States requires a subscription, but 100 sample entries, including sound recordings, are available for browsing. What do you call it when a cop is on the road so everyone slows down? A Tallahassee, Florida, listener suggests the term cop clot.There are plenty of fish in the sea, but...
“Found missing.” “Gone missing.” “Went missing.” If you have ever seen the side of a milk carton you are familiar with these phrases. But these curious...
On the Correct Usage of the Ellipsis; by Darius D. Dolesworthy, Otis Oswald Ott, and T. Thadeus Theotokopoulis; From Volume CLX, Number 2, of Speculative Grammarian, November 2010 — It has come to our attention that there are certain individuals associated with this otherwise reputable journal that appear to be ignorant of the rules regarding the proper usage of the ellipsis. In their ignorance they have proposed what they call a “⅔ Ellipsis” as a way of saving on printing costs. It is this proposition with which we at the BIGRAC must take issue. (Read by James Campbell.)
Ten New Commandments for Linguists; Transcribed from the original Stone Tablets by Trey Jones, et al.; From Collateral Descendant of Lingua Pranca, October, 2009 — As a Linguist, thou art an ambassador for the scientific study of Language and languages in the land of the monolingual naive speaker. Even though the monolingual naive speaker roll their eyes at thee and chastise thee as a word-obsessed fool and exalt their own native speaker competence, thou shalt proselytize the study of “Language with a big-L” whenever and wherever thou mayest do so, spreading the true word of descriptivism and railing against the evils of prescriptivism. Beware the Silver Tongues of Safiric Demons, and follow these, My commandments, forsaking all that may have come before. (Read by Trey Jones.)
We all lead busy lives--so are speed reading courses a good idea? Plus, if you hear someone speaking with a British accent, do you tend to assume they're somehow more intelligent? And some common English surnames tell us stories about life in the Middle Ages. Plus, a 29-letter word for the fear of the number 666, games and riddles, military brats, knocked for a loop, the first dirty word, and book recommendations for math lovers.FULL DETAILSWhat do you call it when you're out in public with friends but they're all staring at their own cell phones? A listener from Santa Monica, California, suggests that the word techgether.Are speed reading classes a waste of time? Not if you want to skim instead of read. A Kentucky cross-country runner had a case of hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia, or fear of the number 666.After you notice a certain word for the first time, chances are you'll start seeing it all over the place. That's known as the frequency illusion, coined by linguist Arnold Zwicky, and...
We all must learn to evolve with the times and begrudgingly accept that words like “ridic” and “selfie” are part of the lexicon. But must our beloved...
Introducing.. The SpecGram ⅔ Ellipsis™©; by The Editors of SpecGram; From Volume CLIX, Number 2, of Speculative Grammarian, June 2010 — Introducing.. The SpecGram ⅔ Ellipsis™©—More than a Comma.. Less than a Semicolon!℠® (Read by James Campbell.)
The Typesetter’s Nursery Rhyme; by Author Unknown; From Volume CLXXII, Number 1, of Speculative Grammarian, January 2015 — soft hyphen, hyphen, / a little break prefer... (Read by Jonathan van der Meer.)
The Ten Commandments; by Evan Smith; From Lingua Pranca, June, 1978 — The Ten Commandments: Linguistic Universals—A Finite Set of Rules from Infinite Wisdom, As Told To Moses by God. (Read by Trey Jones.)
“The poison is shame. The antidote is pride.” It’s June; the President of the USA has officially designated it LGBT Pride Month, and there’ll be Pride events around the world. But how did the word ‘pride’ came to be the banner word for demonstrations and celebrations of LGBT rights and culture? There’s more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/pride. Tweet @allusionistshow, and convene at facebook.com/allusionistshow. This episode was produced by me and Eleanor McDowall of Falling Tree, with help from Peregrine Andrews. The music is by Martin Austwick. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia.fm for PRX.org.
This episode, William tells us about the noun classifications in Palikúr, a language with both gender and numeral classifers (once thought impossible) and a couple other classifications aside. Links and Resources Palikúr and the Typology of Classifiers (Aikenvald and Green 1998)
In this episode, we explore two different types of restorations. We begin with the restoration of the traditional West Saxon monarchy under Edward the Confessor. Edward’s nickname reflects his piety and his purported ability to cure sick people with his healing touch. We then examine a different type of restoration – the restoration of health. We look at two Anglo-Saxon medical texts which contain a variety of charms, medications and other cures. Along the way, we explore English words which derive from ancient medical remedies.
Bob Garfield and Mike Vuolo discuss a mystery word or phrase with lexicographer Ben Zimmer. This week's episode is sponsored by The Great Courses and its series "Language A to Z." Order it at 80% off the original price by visiting thegreatcourses.com/lexicon. Join Slate Plus! Members get bonus segments, exclusive member-only podcasts, and more. Sign up for a free trial today at www.slate.com/podcastsplus. Twitter: @lexiconvalley Facebook: facebook.com/LexiconValley Email: email@example.com
If you don't have anything nice to say, say it like Shakespeare: Thou unhandsome smush-mouthed mush-rump! Thou obscene rug-headed hornbeast! The Shakespeare Insult Generator helps you craft creative zingers by mixing and matching the Bard's own words--perfect for the wanton swag-bellied underskinker in your life. Plus, how do you feel when you say "Thank you" and the person replies "No problem"? That response bothers many people--but should it? Plus, what happens when a married couple doesn't gee-haw together. Also: the origins of shimmy and smidge, ham-and-egger, a techie word quiz, double possessives, and enough food to feed Coxey's army.FULL DETAILSFor a compendium of slanderous Elizabethan expressions, try Barry Kraft's book, Shakespeare Insult Generator. There are more sources online for sneering Shakespearean phrases and randomly generated insults inspired by the Bard, perfect for the obscene rug-headed hornbeast in your life.Don't capitalize names of seasons unless they're part of...
Sometimes it’s tricky to know if you are putting the right emPHASis on the right SylLAble. Even Michigan English Professor Anne Curzan has had her...
Language Made Difficult, Vol. XLIV — The SpecGram LingNerds are joined once again by returning guests Jason Wells-Jensen and Tim Pulju. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds discuss tongue twister research and reveal their academic nightmares. Stick around for the outtakes to hear some “interesting” “musical” interludes and other fun stuff.
If an older man and woman spend lots of time together, going to family gatherings and the like, but they're NOT dating, what do you call their relationship? Best friends? Dear friends? Or . . . something else? And a marathon runner who's crossed 31 states on foot talks about the odd phrases people use when giving directions. Plus, handegg, victuals and vittles, nernees and farsees, take a decision vs. make a decision, and the growing popularity of text tattoos.FULL DETAILSWhen it comes to tattoos, passages of text are an increasingly popular alternative to images.The word victuals is pronounced like "vittles" and refers to cooked foods and shares a Latin root with vitamin and vitality. Sometimes it's spelled vittles, a form often associated with more informal or rustic speech.If you pass by a place, does that mean you go into it? Or do you go past it? An Australian caller and his American ex-girlfriend disagreed. In parts of the English-speaking world, the phrase pass by is one in a long...
Language Made Difficult, Vol. XLIII — The SpecGram LingNerds are joined by returning guests Tim Pulju and Jason Wells-Jensen. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds discuss how to fake a language, and then contemplate ways in which English spelling, morphology, etc., could be revamped.
What does brunch have to do with Lewis Carroll? Fall down the rabbit hole of brunch semantics with Dan Pashman of the Sporkful podcast. There’s more about this episode at http://theallusionist.org/brunch. Tweet @allusionistshow, and convene at facebook.com/allusionistshow. The Allusionist is a proud member of Radiotopia.fm for PRX.org.
Bob Garfield and Mike Vuolo talk to conlanger David J. Peterson about the art and craft of creating languages for Game of Thrones. This week's episode is sponsored by The Great Courses and its series "Language A to Z." Order it at 80% off the original price by visiting thegreatcourses.com/lexicon. And by Blue Apron, the new service that delivers all the ingredients you need to make incredible meals at home. Discover a better way to cook. Visit BlueApron.com/lexicon to get your first two meals free. Join Slate Plus! Members get bonus segments, exclusive member-only podcasts, and more. Sign up for a free trial today at www.slate.com/podcastsplus. Twitter: @lexiconvalley Facebook: facebook.com/LexiconValley Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Right off the bat, it's easy to think of several everyday expressions that derive from America's pastime. Including right off the bat. The Dickson Baseball Dictionary catalogues not just those contributions but also more obscure terms like "pebble picker," and explains why a fastball is called a "Linda Ronstadt." Plus, as more transgender people are publicly recognized, there's a debate about which pronouns to use. And who in the world would give a one-star review on Amazon to … Herman Melville's Moby-Dick? Plus, the plural of hummus, tear the rag off the bush, to boot, synesthesia, paper stretchers, wet washes, and the verb to podcast.FULL DETAILSRight off the bat, you can probably name a long list of common idioms that come from baseball. For example, right off the bat. But how about some of the more obscure ones, like the Linda Ronstadt? In a nod to Ronstadt's song "Blue Bayou," her name is used in baseball to refer to a ball that blew by you. Paul Dickson has collected this and hundreds...
Language Made Difficult, Vol. XLII — The SpecGram LingNerds are joined by returning guest Hedvig Skirgård. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds see what comes out of their mouths after reading an article claiming awareness comes after speaking, and then they discuss various linguistical ideas—real and imagined—that are ready for retirement.
Ever try to write a well-known passage in limerick form? It's harder than you think. How about this one: "There once was a lady who's sure / All that glitters is golden and pure/ There's a stairway that heads up to heaven, it's said / And the cost of the thing she'll incur." Plus, the diacritical mark that readers of The New Yorker magazine find most annoying. And how do you really pronounce the name of that big city in Southern California--the one also known as the "City of Angels"? Also, clopening, Z vs. Zed, seeding a tournament, the wee man and Old Scratch, and a word game based on the novels of Charles Dickens.FULL DETAILSWhat do readers of The New Yorker complain about most when they write letters to the editor? Those two dots above vowels in words like cooperate and reelect. The diaeresis, as those marks are known, has remained in use at the magazine ever since the copy editor who planned on nixing it died in 1978, and the whole saga is chronicled in fellow New Yorker copy editor...
In this episode we explore two aspects of the term ‘flesh and blood.’ We examine the human body from the perspective of the Anglo-Saxons by looking at their words for parts of the body. We also explore Old English words associated with sickness and disease. At the same time, we consider how the term ‘flesh and blood’ is utilized to describe one’s children or other very close relatives. Specifically, we examine the mothers who fought to secure the English throne for their respective flesh and blood following the death of King Cnut in 1035.
Flowers are a popular way to honor Mother's Day, so we decided to take a look at some expressions that seem to have floral origins. First, there's "a...
Language Made Difficult, Vol. XLI — The SpecGram LingNerds are joined by guest Hedvig Skirgård. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds go into denial about their own “fingerprint words”, and then flip the script with some descriptivist confessions.