215 Hours of Free Foreign Language Lessons on Spotify: French, Chinese, German, Russian & More

≡ Category: Language Lessons |1 Comment

In September, we highlighted for you 75 free audio books available on Spotify–books written by the likes of Jane Austen, James Joyce, Charles Bukowski, Franz Kafka, Kurt Vonnegut, Edgar Allan Poe, Jack Kerouac, Sylvia Plath, William Shakespeare & more. Peruse the complete list here.


What Ancient Latin Sounded Like, And How We Know It

≡ Category: History, Language Lessons |1 Comment


Latin is a language
As dead as dead can be; 
It killed the Romans long ago, 
And now it’s killing me.

That famed ditty isn’t likely to resonate with many modern school children, but interest in ancient Rome remains fairly robust. 
We’ve come to accept that those stately ruins were once covered in graffiti.


Learn Ancient Greek in 64 Free Lessons: A Free Course from Brandeis & Harvard

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Briefly noted: Leonard Muellner (Professor Emeritus of Classical Studies at Brandeis University) and Belisi Gillespie (Phd candidate at UC Berkeley) have posted 64 videos on YouTube, which, when taken together, “present all the content covered in two semesters of a college-level Introduction to Ancient Greek course.


Free: Learn Foreign Languages in Your Car

≡ Category: Language Lessons |4 Comments

Have a boring commute? A long road trip coming up? Consider using that time well and learning a language as you drive.


Becoming Bilingual Can Give Your Brain a Boost: What Recent Research Has to Say

≡ Category: Education, Language Lessons, Neuroscience |1 Comment

From the time my daughter was born, my wife and I took her out to restaurants—not to annoy the other diners, mind you, she was usually very well behaved—but to expose her palate to as much variety as possible and socialize her early to new and unfamiliar environments.


The New Yorker’s “Comma Queen” Mercifully Explains the Difference Between Who/Whom, Lay/Lie, Less/Fewer & Beyond

≡ Category: Language Lessons |2 Comments


From The New Yorker comes “The Comma Queen” video series, which features Mary Norris talking about the finer points of language that come up again and again in our everyday writing. Some of it, no doubt, will come in handy.


The Fascinating Whistled Languages of the Canary Islands, Turkey & Mexico (and What They Say About the Human Brain)

≡ Category: Language Lessons, Science |4 Comments


For some years now linguist Daniel Everett has challenged the orthodoxy of Noam Chomsky and other linguists who believe in an innate “universal grammar” that governs human language acquisition.


Learn to Speak 48 Languages for Free: Everything from Arabic to Indonesian to Yiddish on One Page

≡ Category: Language Lessons |3 Comments

Even by the standards of United States Presidents, Barack Obama has led a pretty unusual life. His early experiences included a childhood plunge into internationalism in the form of not just his Kenyan father but his Indonesian stepfather, to whose homeland the family moved when Obama was six years old.


A Proportional Visualization of the World’s Most Popular Languages

≡ Category: Language Lessons |18 Comments

Click to view in a big, high-res format
Last week we highlighted for you a beautiful Tree of Languages infographic, created by Minna Sundberg using data from ethnologue.com. This week, we present another visualization of world languages, this one produced by Alberto Lucas Lopéz, on behalf of the South China Morning Post.


The Tree of Languages Illustrated in a Big, Beautiful Infographic

≡ Category: Art, Language Lessons |64 Comments


Click image, then click again, to enlarge
Call it counterintuitive clickbait if you must, but Forbes’ Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry made an intriguing argument when he granted the title of “Language of the Future” to French, of all tongues.


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