Language Articles

endangered languages

Endangered Languages: A Health Issue

January 26, 2018 1:51 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Endangered languages are intertwined with world-wide social, physical and mental health issues. I offer three examples: Endangered Languages #1: The Case of Mayan in Guatemala An already-available  February 2018 issue of The Lancet, a well-known medical journal, has an article concerning endangered languages and the health outcomes of their speakers... read more

On Count Nouns and Mass Nouns

September 29, 2017 12:00 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

We English speakers are sometimes surprised to discover that we split our perspective on how we view things in the universe. As it turns out, we make a clear distinction between count nouns and mass nouns. Count nouns are – not surprisingly – nouns you can count: one book, two... read more

American Sign Language interpreters helping during Hurricane Irma press conferences

American Sign Language – Ten Things to Know

September 13, 2017 9:18 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Title image: Florida governor Rick Scott giving updates on Hurricane Irma. Note the American Sign Language interpreter to the left. I’m sitting high and dry in Durham, North Carolina, and glued to television hurricane coverage because my principal residence is in downtown Orlando, and hurricane Irma is barreling toward my stuff... read more

Folk Dress and Folk Etymology

June 27, 2017 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Title Image: Traditional Romanian dress. The focus of this blog is the linguistic phenomenon known as folk etymology. Last week, a well-known pharmacy in Romania launched a campaign that drew my attention. Farmacia Catena advertised that from June 22 to June 24, if you come into one of their stores... read more

Observations on the Japanese Language

June 13, 2017 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Japanese Language: Baby Steps 日 ‘sun’ + 本 ‘origin/tree’ = Japan         日本語= Japanese Language I’m in Japan now. Sure, I can say ohayō gozaimasu ‘good morning’, arigatō gozaimasu ‘thank you very much’ and order basic food items, e.g. I have shōchū  rokku ‘(Japanese) vodka on the rocks,’... read more