Monthly Archives: December, 2015

Achoo! A Cross-Linguistic Look at Reactions to Sneezing

“God bless you!” In English, we’re used to giving our blessings to people who have just sneezed. However, invoking God (or at least blessings) after sneezing is not common across all languages. When responding to sneezing, other languages often use other themes, such as health, the weather, or nothing at all. Here’s a cross-linguistic look(…)

Around the World in Christmas Facts

Happy Hogswatch! Or Merry Christmas, if you prefer. It’s that time of the year again when we hold our annual overeating festival and crack out the family disputes over Trivial Pursuit. Or perhaps that’s just us here at Listen and Learn. Whatever you’re doing, we’d like to extend some Christmas greetings in your general direction.(…)

What’s In A [Phrase]?

Having a way with words is not a skill we’re all lucky to have. But think about it: there are so many hidden meanings, and such downright silliness in our idiomatic language, that technically we all have a way with words. Even if we don’t know it. We’re betting you might not know the origins(…)

How Knowing Multiple Languages Makes You More Efficient

  Knowing multiple languages confers a lot of benefits. It allows you to connect with an entirely new population of people. It opens up countless professional opportunities, both domestically and abroad. And it expands your horizons, allowing you to more deeply understand a different culture. But the benefits of bilingualism don’t end there. Did you(…)

Hebrew: Survival Phrases  

  Survival phrases can encapsulate a variety of things when in a foreign country and the list can go on and on. To get you started, we’ve compiled a list of emergency phrases and useful words you can use in many situations. Becoming familiar with a handful of essential phrases or questions can really facilitate(…)

When TV Takes Over: 9 Catchphrases That We Can’t Help But Use

Unless you live under a rock, the invasion of TV catchphrases is probably dripping off of your tongue in your daily speech without you even realizing. Language is constantly evolving, and  TV is such an integral part of our lives, it makes sense for there to be an overlap between real life speech and that(…)

Top Israeli Foods You Have to Try

The question of whether there is one distinct category of Israeli food is a hotly contested topic. Israeli food, like many cuisines, incorporates influence from its numerous surrounding countries and cultures, reflecting the movement of people to and from its borders. Drawing ingredients and dishes from the Middle East, the Mediterranean and North Africa, Israeli(…)