Articles on Language

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Inflammatory words can prime a mind. Elijah O'Donnell/Unsplash

Hearing hate speech primes your brain for hateful actions

A new theory of language suggests that people understand words by unconsciously simulating what they describe. Repeated exposure – and the simulation that comes with it – makes it easier to act.
Afrikaner descendants representing Argentina, South Africa today and the country’s old flag. Richard Finn Gregory / GOODWORK

Language and identity: lessons from a unique Afrikaans community in Patagonia

A small community of Afrikaners has been living in Argentina since the early 1900s. Linguistic research has found they're like a time capsule, reflecting pronunciation and syntax from an earlier era.
The coastline of Sulawesi, Indonesia, where languages and cultures are threatened by climate change. Anastasia Riehl

The impact of climate change on language loss

Approximately 7,000 languages are spoken in the world today, but only about half are expected to survive this century. One factor contributing to this loss is climate change.

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