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Code of ethics for forensic linguistics

 This piece does not reflect the official opinion of the Society for Linguistic Anthropology, its officers or its individual members. The Linguistic Society of America’s “LSA Ethics Discussion Blog” has posted a draft Code of Ethics for Linguists in Forensic Linguistics Consulting. The authors seek comments on the draft policy, primarily from members of the […]

Marketing language abilities

Recently some scholars in language acquisition and education have posted links on Facebook to the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood (henceforth CCFC), which is asking the US Federal Trade Commission to stop the company Your Baby Can Read (YBCR) from advertising its products. According to CCFC, YBCR sells a system that promises to teach […]

IP Addresses Not A Proxy For Language Ability

As Mark Allen Peterson wrote in his post on “Developing Expertise,” we have been having a discussion about the importance of bringing anthropological knowledge to the social web. For this reason I called upon people who follow me on Twitter (@kerim) to bring their anthropological expertise to the new question-and-answer forum, Quora. While there are […]

Increasing number of US students study ASL

According to an article in the New York Times, American Sign Language is now the fourth most-studied language among US college and university students. While enrollment in foreign-language courses generally has held steady or increased only modestly, enrollment in ASL courses increased more than sixteen percent between 2006 and 2009. Instructor Amy Ruth McGraw suggests […]

Complex orthography and advertising

I continue my observations on Japan’s complex writing system with notes on two texts: the cardboard covers enclosing two six-packs of happoshu, or low-cost beer.

Multikulti in context

Ingrid Piller at Language on the Move looks and English-medium news coverage of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s recent declaration, “Multikulti ist absolut gescheitert.” Piller says that the English language press largely seems to misunderstand the comments.

Macaronic Orthography; or The Devill Kis his 肛門

My commute to my new job at Nagoya University this morning revealed that macarone is alive and well among Japanese taggers.

Romansh

Discussion of the revitalization of and resistance to Romansh, the fourth official Swiss language related to Latin used during Roman times. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/29/world/europe/29swiss.html?_r=2&hp

More on Haitian Kreyòl and the education system

Some interesting comments on the education system in general in a New York Times Editorial on Haitian Education These comments were posted in response to the Petition to have textbooks in Kreyòl in the schools (the last post on this SLA Blog): Nancy Reyes says Are you implying that Haitian kids are dumber than kids […]

South African languages

About the vuvuzela term: first, the suffix -ela is an “applicative” extension in isiZulu. The suffix “ela” means “an action… performed for, on behalf of, or in the direction of something or someone” (Mbeje 2005:229). Second, there are a large number of ideophones in isiZulu (in fact, the term was first invented as a grammatical category for the linguistic analysis of isiZulu). An ideophone is basically type of onomatopoeia. Thus the term “vuvuzela” can be understood as ‘the thing with which you make the vuvu sound for someone or something’.

Linguistic Anthropology Roundup #8

Taping marriages One of the most frequent uses of linguistic anthropology is to help us understand how people in marriages communicate with each other. Article on people “learning to be married” and the importance of using videotapes to understand how people interact with each other. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/18/AR2010061804509.html?sid=ST2010062404889 This article is on studies from UCLA’s Center for […]