Episode 120

Ask A Linguist: Your Language Questions Answered By Linguists From Talk The Talk


January 21st, 2019

59 mins 46 secs

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Special Guests

About this Episode

Linguist hour! Lindsay and I bring you an interview with one of our favourite podcasts, the linguistics show Talk the Talk from Australia.

Please take 5 minutes to take our Fluent Show survey!

We don't often have research scientists on the show, so this was a huge opportunity for the Fluent Show to go into science.

We posed your "Ask a Linguist" questions on these topics:

Is it a language? Is it a dialect?

Talk the Talk had a few insights that I had never heard before.

What determines the prestige of a dialect within a language?

We looked into how politics and social developments can directly influence how you speak, and how you feel about it.

Are there common language learning stages across all languages, for example grammar needed to communicate something?

In fact, there are two ways to approach language learning: analysis and pattern-spotting, and learning and copying useful chunks. Which one works? Talk the Talk gave us the science perspective. Plus: What is "glottochronology?"

Hedvig quoted this research paper.

If we come across a language in the same area that uses different words for the same concepts, does that language come from a different family of languages?

In essence, yes. For this one, you need a basic vocabulary list - but they're not all that straightforward. Hedvig and Kylie explain more on this episode.

Finally: Podcasting!

Also: We talk about what it's like to podcast about languages, and about podcasting in general. If you're not interested in the wider context of language and podcasting authentically...then skip it and you won't miss the linguistics. We do know that many listeners love podcasts and think about starting their own, so for you this discussion is going to be both useful and interesting.

Ultimately, we love and support community radio and podcasting. And in that sense...

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