Language Articles

remoralize

Remoralize: A Word for 2020

January 7, 2020 6:18 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Yesterday I heard the word ‘remoralize‘ for the first time in my life. Or, at least, I heard it as if it were the first time. A friend was talking about politics, in particular voting, and said that people needed to be remoralized. She then excused herself by saying, “I... read more

dictionaries

Dictionaries and the World of Lexicography

December 3, 2019 6:23 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Dictionaries: not the sexiest topic ever. Even the famous dictionary-maker Samuel Johnson, in the title quote, acknowledged himself to be a “harmless drudge.” Nevertheless, an article in the New York Times this past weekend has inspired me. It is Latin Dictionary’s Journey: A to Zythum in 125 Years (and Counting).... read more

(Un)translatables: Japanese Top Ten

May 17, 2019 6:29 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

(Un)translatables – my term – are words in one language that may take a paragraph to explain in another language … and still not quite get it right. (Title Image: Hokkaido University, kanji: ‘Japanese language’) All languages have them. Japanese has some really good ones. (Un)translatables in Japanese: The Bad... read more

Language Matters

Language Matters Symposium: Duke University

March 8, 2019 12:11 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Language Matters: The Event Today Friday March 8 a symposium at Duke University entitled Language Matters honors my scholarship. In particular the symposium focuses on the book I wrote with co-author Phillip Carter. The title of the book is Languages in the World. How History, Culture and Politics Shape Language.  The event... read more