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Here’s a linguistic puzzle: Why does “I like you” sound okay, but “Like you I” sounds weird and Yoda-ish? Well, that’s just how English rolls: subjects come first. But surprisingly, most other human languages put their subjects first, too. But why?

Ben, Daniel, and Hedvig get structural on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Show notes

Hedvig’s blog: Humans Who Read Grammars
http://humans-who-read-grammars.blogspot.com

Sarcasm looks the same in the brain whether it’s words or emoji
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/sarcasm-looks-same-brain-whether-its-words-or-emoji

Smiley Lore 🙂
https://www.cs.cmu.edu/~sef/sefSmiley.htm

Gender-neutral emoji approved for 2017
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2017/03/28/gender-neutral-emoji-approved-2017/

10 Important Conversations We Can Finally Have With the 69 New Emojis Just Announced
http://www.eonline.com/news/839141/10-important-conversations-we-can-finally-have-with-the-69-new-emojis-just-announced

This Year’s New Emoji Include a Hedgehog, Barf, and Brain, and, Yes, Finally, a Merman
http://nymag.com/selectall/2017/03/these-69-new-emoji-might-be-coming-to-your-phone-soon.html

Final 2017 Emoji List
http://blog.emojipedia.org/final-2017-emoji-list/

Reply All: #69 Disappeared (about YAAAS)
https://gimletmedia.com/episode/69-disappeared/

Feature 81A: Order of Subject, Object and Verb
http://wals.info/feature/81A#1/18/153

How to Understand the Deep Structures of Language
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-to-understand-the-deep-structures-of-language/

Charades reveals a universal sentence structure
https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn14228-charades-reveals-a-universal-sentence-structure/

At the origin of language structure
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/08/150827083532.htm

Charades does not reveal a universal sentence structure II
http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=326

Why are some word orders more common than others? A uniform information density account
http://papers.nips.cc/paper/4085-why-are-some-word-orders-more-common-than-others-a-uniform-information-density-account.pdf

Political correctness: how the right invented a phantom enemy
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/30/political-correctness-how-the-right-invented-phantom-enemy-donald-trump


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

Image credit: http://wals.info/feature/81A#2/18.0/151.5