Category Archives: serious

Why a Year Abroad Isn’t Enough to Become Fluent

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Taking the leap to move to the country where your target language is spoken can be an exciting segue in your language learning journey. In fact, a year abroad is often touted by teachers and professors as one of the best ways to perfect your skills, and as a result we language students put a(…)


Learning Myths Debunked

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True or false: Metacognition (the thinking about thinking) is just as important for learning as raw intelligence? Learning should be spaced out over time? Right brain thinkers learn differently from left brain thinkers? Intelligence is fixed at birth? A good teacher can teach any subject? Any thoughts? Well, these are just a few of the(…)


Population Boom, Language Bust: Homogenization at Work

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Since modern science has extended life spans and lowered infant and child mortality rates, world population has been increasing at an exponential rate leading to major changes in human migration. This migration has created larger and larger populous centers that has resulted in cultural homogenization and the dominance of fewer languages (ahem, English). Okay, that’s(…)


Are You Woke?

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Slang is one of the few aspects of language that has the ability to change in the blink of an eye. As soon as it’s born, it mutates, evolves, and then passes through an extensive transformative process on social media where memes, GIFs, tweets, and status updates spit out any kind of new meaning. While(…)


Your Guide to Lies, Lies, and More Lies

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Liar, liar, pants on fire, and if that were true most of us would be alight from the ankles up. Everyone hates a liar. The word consistently rates in the bottom 5% of 500 descriptive words but we all are; big or small, intentional or by mishap, liars. We have great words for lying. When(…)


Is Donald Trump Guilty Of Hubris?

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Donald Trump wowed every thinking man and woman in America, most around the world, and perhaps beyond if there is intelligent life out there by winning the US presidential election against all odds back in November. He broke every guideline, rule and taboo of political campaigns. He insulted his opponents, belittled the press, and told(…)


The Post-Election Political Power Shift

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The US election is over, and despite there still being the matter of the official electoral college vote of December 19th to make it a (dystopian) reality, it looks as though the world has got itself a new American president. We say the world, because despite the potential horrors American citizens are now facing in(…)


The Election in Words: How Linguistics Played an Important Role Between Hillary and Trump

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Words hold power, and anyone who has been called a name on a school yard, or branded by their peers as different, will know that words can sometimes cut to the core. Words can grant freedom, make people feel loved, ensure a nation’s security, or they can be used to demoralize and tear people apart.(…)


Dante Alighieri’s Way with Words

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In our final look at language maestros, we are heading back to the Middle Ages to discover the works, and impacts, of Dante. Dante’s depictions of hell, purgatory, and heaven make an episode of Supernatural seem like going on a teacup ride at The Magic Kingdom. Or perhaps we are just easily scared… let’s take(…)


When Cervantes Roamed the Earth: The King of Spanish Literature

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So far in our look at some of our most famous language maestros, we have unfairly concentrated on those whose native language was English. This week we intend to redress that balance by looking at the master of Spanish literature, Miguel de Cervantes. Cervantes has long been considered the greatest writer in the Spanish language,(…)