Category: interviews (page 1 of 7)

357: The F-Word (with Jesse Sheidlower)

Flexible. Funny. Foul.

This most versatile of English words is all of these and more. And it gets a thorough cataloging in The F-Word by lexicographer Jesse Sheidlower.

He sits down with Daniel for a chat on history, power, …

352: Wait (with Sali Tagliamonte)

Wait — you mean people are doing something new in English? They sure are.

It’s happening to the word wait, and it’s been spotted by famed sociolinguist Dr Sali Tagliamonte of the University of Toronto. Do you start sentences with …

350: Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish (with Zalmen Mlotek and Motl Didner)

Fiddler on the Roof is heading to Broadway — in Yiddish for the first time.

What went into the production? How did translation work? What does this production mean to the cast and to audience members?

Daniel speaks with Zalmen Mlotek

346: What Works (featuring Dan Dediu)

Why does language have the form it does, and why does it change the way it does?

Is it just… because? Or are there environmental motivators? Linguists are getting interested in just what factors are forming language into what it …

341: What the F (featuring Benjamin Bergen)

What’s behind swearing?

If you’re looking at the brain, an awful lot. But how do we use swearing to navigate social relationships? And do all language have swears?

We’re talking to cognitive scientist Benjamin Bergen on this episode of Talk

340: Ethics in Big Data (featuring Hannah Rashkin and Maarten Sap)

Do you know where your data is?

Language researchers can learn a lot from publicly available internet data. But what are the ethical issues surrounding the collection and use of this information? What about data that comes from home assistants? …

337: Getting the Bias out of Data (featuring Robyn Speer and Kai-Wei Chang)

People are biased. And computers learn from people.

That means our data is biased, and in a big data world, that can cause big problems.

But researchers are finding ways to turn down the bias in a dataset. We’re talking …

333: When Sapir Met Whorf (featuring Mikael Parkvall and Östen Dahl)

Would you think differently if you spoke a different language? And does the structure of your language have any perceptible effect on your behaviour?

We’re revisiting the Sapir Whorf Hypothesis. Is this an idea that’s coming in from the cold? …

330: Making Words for Miriwoong (featuring Knut Olawsky)

The Australian Aboriginal language of Mirawoong is being revitalised. But to do this, it needs more than speakers. It needs words.

How do you construct new words in a language? And how well are these words being accepted?

We’re talking …

329: Pokémonikers (featuring Stephanie Shih)

A conference on the linguistics of Pokémon? Is this for real?

It sure is. Looking at the names of Pokémon across different languages is showing linguists more about how language operates. And it could show us how children learn language …

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