Speech Events

Educational Linguists on Parole

The Languages of Star Wars (Part 2): Human Languages Used in the Films

If you read Star Wars trivia for pleasure or browse Wookieepedia long enough, you’ll eventually discover that some of the languages in the Star Wars films were sourced from real human languages. But which ones? How? Why?

January 24, 2016 · Leave a comment

The Languages of Star Wars (Part 1): A Sociolinguistic Investigation

The Star Wars film franchise might just be the most world famous multilingual movies ever–yet hardly anyone ever thinks of them that way. Why?

December 16, 2015 · 1 Comment

A New Font in the War on Tofu

Have you ever wondered why certain characters don’t seem to show up right on your phone or within your web-browser? When what should ostensibly should be letters, numbers or even, … Continue reading

December 14, 2015 · Leave a comment

Progressives, Tone and Register in Bambara/Jula

How does one formulate progressive sentences in Bambara?

November 29, 2015 · Leave a comment

The art of withholding

An attempt to get a handle on those trying times we “withhold,” from friends, from family, from companions.

October 30, 2015 · Leave a comment

Registers in the Benghazi hearing

Register use was at issue in Hillary Clinton’s testimony to a House committee last week.

October 28, 2015 · Leave a comment

Media Dictionary of SLX — Conversation

What is a conversation? What can we see happening when people talk? Let’s ask Sesame Street.

August 27, 2015 · Leave a comment

Eventful Speech: A visit to Carlisle

This post is about what ‘speech’ history takes note of– and what is left unheard and unseen. It is also about a detour in a road trip that I took … Continue reading

June 2, 2015 · Leave a comment

My Bike: The Linguistic Anthropology of Gentrification

What is the meaning of an utterance? Who has power? And most importantly, what is gentrification? No seriously, what the hell is the referent of gentrification? Yesterday, exiting the YMCA I … Continue reading

May 18, 2015 · 2 Comments

Define and conquer

What is “language”? Here on Speech Events we’ve stated that we’re interested in what people do through language (Saussure’s parole), rather than linguistic form (Saussure’s langue, Chomsky’s grammatical competence, or … Continue reading

May 6, 2015 · Leave a comment

Outlander, Time Travel Stories, and Language Change

When you travel through time, how will people react when they hear you speak? Will you be able to be understood by anyone? Some cursory thoughts on this very important question.

April 4, 2015 · 4 Comments

Media Dictionary of SLX – Register

All of us learn ways that certain bits of language (sounds, words, phrases, other things) are associated with certain kinds of people. Watch Elmo learn all about it.

February 26, 2015 · 1 Comment

A glance inside the social change toolbox

By engaging in the discipline of educational linguistics we’ve made it pretty clear– we care about social realities, about people, power-structures, parole, and how they intertwine. We’re out to make … Continue reading

February 16, 2015 · 3 Comments

Everyone’s a sociolinguist

[Cross posted from Drinking Chiya]

People in general, but especially in Nepal love talking about language. Even when I haven’t asked anything or expressed interest in language, things will come up about it all the time.

February 14, 2015 · Leave a comment

Media Dictionary of SLX – Speech Genres

Remember Perd Hapley? Here’s more humor extracted from looking closely at the regular features of a certain speech genre, in this case: the cable news report. From Charlie Brooker and Newswipe.

January 15, 2015 · Leave a comment

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