Language & Linguistics

Fifteen Eighty Four


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  • 13 Mar 2024
    Katherine S. Flowers

    Changing My Mind about Language Policy

    When I first started studying language policy, I thought I knew where it came from, how it worked, and why it mattered. In my view at the time, language policy was about national politicians trying to manage the language use of perceived outsiders. Then, ten years ago, I started researching what would become the book […]

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  • 22 Feb 2024
    Mihai Surdeanu, Marco Antonio Valenzuela-Escárcega

    To Understand Large Language Models We Need to Go Back to the Basics

    Arthur C. Clarke famously stated that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Most of us have experienced this law with respect to the latest iterations of large language models (LLMs) such as GPT-4. This perspective may lead to incorrect usage of LLMs, resulting in undesirable and dangerous effects such as privacy violations, proliferation […]

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  • 9 Jan 2024
    Marianne Mason

    Invoking Counsel in the United States: A Game Facilitated by the Law

    My work as a forensic linguist provided a window into the interrogation room. One of the cases in which I consulted was a criminal appellate case in which the defendant’s invocation for counsel was deemed equivocal. The defense contended that the defendant had indeed invoked counsel unequivocally after being read his Miranda rights and hence […]

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  • 3 Jan 2024
    François Grosjean

    On Bilinguals and Bilingualism: Fifty Years in the Field

    Academics first become interested in a research field in different ways – some by following a course at university, others through listening and talking to motivating speakers, others by events they have lived through, and some simply by accident. What triggered my interest in bilinguals and bilingualism was my own bilingualism. I started my life […]

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  • 10 Nov 2023
    Sebastian Rasinger, Guido Rings

    The Cambridge Introduction to Intercultural Communication: Q&A with Sebastian Rasinger and Guido Rings

    Associate Professor Sebastian Rasinger and Professor Guido Rings, authors of The Cambridge Introduction to Intercultural Communication, discuss Intercultural Communication and their latest textbook What is Intercultural Communication? Is it about speaking to people from other countries? Yes – and no. Traditional approaches to intercultural communication predominantly focused on face-to-face interaction between people of different national […]

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  • 2 Nov 2023
    Laura Aull

    You can’t write that…8 myths about correct English

    Picture a boxing ring, English on one side, diversity on the other, and you have a basic version of the history of written English in schools. English and diversity might otherwise be great friends, but they are continually pitted against one another in educational opportunity structures. In the 18th century, for example, the shift from […]

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  • 2 Nov 2023
    Tim Wharton, Louis de Saussure

    Emotion? We don’t talk about it!

    Few would deny that emotions are fundamental to what it means to be human. Indeed, according to some, emotions are what make us human. Given that, and given the fact that humans communicate about their emotional states a great deal, you might think that theories of language and communication would include comprehensive accounts of how […]

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  • 19 Oct 2023
    Ekkehard Wolff

    Reconstructing an ancestral African language, mother to 80 present-day languages in the central African Sahel

    In this blog, I provide answers to a few basic questions that I imagine a reader, who is not an expert in historical African linguistics, might wish to ask the author. Why this topic, what’s so interesting about it? Africa is the cradle of humankind and where human language evolved. Tens of thousands of years […]

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