Bob’s your uncle

Mar 8, 2012 by

In an earlier post, we have discussed how kinship terminology differs from language to language. Where one language may have an umbrella term for several different relations, another language make have a more detailed network of...

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Why Some Languages Sound So Fast, or do they?

Sep 19, 2011 by

As a long-time reader of this blog would already know, I am typically skeptical of “linguistic” studies that calculate an average this and multiply it by an average that and supposedly produce results that are relevant...

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On Google Translate, again

Sep 17, 2011 by

In a couple of postings last winter (see here and here), I already discussed Google’s machine translation tool, Google Translate (GT) and expressed my skepticism about it. Today, another article on GT by David Bellos from The...

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How can we know what an ancient text means?

Sep 14, 2011 by

I don’t usually post links to videos or other blogs, but this lecture by my friend and colleague Dr. Joel M. Hoffman is brilliant and well-worth watching! And it touches on the topic we’ve been exploring for some time...

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Fruit, vegetable, boy, girl…

Aug 24, 2011 by

It may appear from the previous post that gender is “lost in translation” only when a literary text is translated from a language with no grammatical gender system into a language that does have one, but this is far from...

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