Articles for Evolution of language

Ludwig Wittgenstein’s theory of language made simple – and fun – by philosopher Alain de Botton

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Much has been said and written about Ludwig Wittgenstein and his theory of language, but the video narrated by British philosopher and author Alain de Botton provides a fresh and playful take on his complex background, life, philosophy, and vision ...

Beyond the battle, far from the frontline: a call from linguists for non-war-related ways of talking about Covid-19

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village The coronavirus pandemic has led to an explosion of new words and phrases, both in English and in other languages. We have written about the new lexicon, and how it is helping people to make sense of the changes in ...

Elephant in the zoom, Le Creuset wrist, and cough-shaming: how Covid lingo is creeping into our every day language

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Neologisms related to the coronavirus pandemic are spreading so fast that it is hard to keep up and our article on this topic  of March 25 is already out of date! We have picked up some new terms here and ...

The new forms of living, working and socializing during the current pandemic have engendered a crop of neologisms

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Tired of the corona infodemic and endless doomscrolling? Take a break, join a covideoparty and chill out with a quarantini ...🍸 New words and phrases such as these are popping up practically every day, not to mention the thousands of ...

Corporatespeak, a cryptic dialect to sound smarter or an interesting reflection of the economic metaphors of its day?

Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Molly Young is the literary critic for New York magazine and a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine. In a recent article about corporatespeak she provides interesting insights about the evolution of this language and how it relates to ...

Is the apostrophe doomed to die? As language and norms evolve the future of this punctuation mark looks bleak

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Apostrophes are said to date back to the early 16th century and originally served to signal that something had been removed from a word. During the 17th and 18th centuries they began to be used to indicate the genitive (possessive) ...

Skirting online censorship in China by “translating” a banned article into Morse, hexadecimal code, emoji and elvish language

Pisana Ferrari - cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village People across China have been very creative in past weeks in finding ways to get around the ban on an article that was critical of how the government handled the coronavirus epidemic. The article, written by Ai Fen, director of the ...

When the evolution of a language is driven by political dissent: the example of Chinese “hot” words

by Pisana Ferrari – cApStAn Ambassador to the Global Village Mandarin Chinese comprises around 370,000 words, more than double the number of words in the Oxford English dictionary, and almost three times those in French and Russian dictionaries. “Reci”, literally translated as “hot words” are new terms that young Chinese ...