Recent Blog Posts

There are more than 350 languages spoken in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That may seem like a lot – but compared to the number of languages spoken world-wide, it’s only a small fraction. The world is home to over 7,000 languages, but most people are […]

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In our ongoing series discussing the impact of metaphors, we examined how language of war is used for debates and arguments. The use of war metaphors in the English language extends beyond arguments. Metaphors help us link abstract concepts and experiences with more concrete ones. But metaphors can also inform […]

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Sinhalese, also known as Sinhala, is the native language of the Sinhala people. Over 16 million Sinhala people live in Sri Lanka, making them the island’s largest ethnic group. Sinhala people can trace their origins from Indians who traveled to Sri Lanka around 540 BC. Most Sinhalese speakers live in […]

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English speakers have it relatively easy when it comes to traveling abroad – it’s the most popular second language in the world, commonly studied in 55 countries. And in most major international cities, even in the countries on this list, you will have an easier time finding English speakers than […]

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Hansel and Gretel, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, The Emperor’s New Clothes, Pippi Longstocking: although you may not have realized at the time, some of the first stories you remember reading or hearing were translations. In the US, until relatively recently, it was rare for a translator’s name to even be noted […]

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Planning a trip outside of your own country can be an involved process. On top of the usual tasks of purchasing airline tickets, booking a hotel, deciding what to see, and making reservations, you may also need to obtain a visa and learn some basic foreign language phrases. One thing […]

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Oel naati kam? That’s ‘I see you’ – a typical greeting in Na’vi, the Avatar language. Yes, I’m talking about the big blue people, though if you’re a science fiction fan, it probably doesn’t surprise you to know that an entire constructed language, complete with complex grammar and syntax, corresponds […]

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My German friend, Klaus, did an exchange program in Mexico during his third year of undergrad. After a couple of weeks in the bustling metropolis of Mexico City, he had made a few friends. One night, over some beers in his new friend Juan’s apartment, he was invited to a […]

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Bonan matenon, kiel vi fartas? That’s Esperanto for ‘good morning, how are you?’ If you’re trying to remember what country Esperanto is spoken in, don’t flex those brain muscles too hard. Because while around two million people from more than one hundred and twenty countries speak Esperanto, you’ll be hard-pressed […]

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Communication via complex language is perhaps the single most defining characteristic of humankind. But if the birth of spoken language was charted as hour zero on a twenty-four-hour clock, and the moment that you’re reading this article represents twenty-four-hundred-hours, written language would have only appeared about fifty-three minutes ago, at […]

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