"Are we human beings who are in community, do we call to each other? Do we heed each other? Do we want to know each other?" Poet Elizabeth Alexander speaks of our need for language to understand our neighbors.
Behold! A sneak preview of Creating Our Own Lives, an exciting, new addition to our portfolio of podcasts! Plus, our executive editor selects some of the most intriguing reads on female sex positivity, evolving definitions of motherhood, democracy's doctors, and the cultural treasures binding us together.
With political rhetoric stirring people to anger, Mohammed Fairouz calls for us to cease and desist with our blunt use of destructive language and use our highest forms of linguistic expression.
The limitations of language can be a barrier to deep connection. But the metaphor of unity and interconnectedness found in a sculpture by Jaume Plensa reminds us of the power of art and poetry to traverse this boundary.
Politics can divide more often than unite. But, deep involvement in the civic sphere doesn't mean we have to sacrifice empathy and civility.
Dispatches from PopTech, a magnificent essay on Bach, an invitation to find the autobiography of your voice, a meditation on the splendor of Autumn, and an instructive essay on shedding old mindsets.
What is the autobiography of your voice? An invitation to write the story of your voice and allow yourself to be surprised.
There's something magical about the way Ann Hamilton inhabits space. This video will transport you to an extraordinary world of ordinary life observed by a maker.
Sometimes it takes persistence to pitch a voice you know is right — and the willingness to listen to others around the dinner table.
The poet Elizabeth Alexander once asked, “What if the mightiest word is love?”
Watch the 20-minute video in which the MIT researcher explains how he wired his house with microphones and video cameras — and how we learn language and the landscapes in which we encounter each other.
Our delightful exercise with 10 of the 27 drawings that comprise the "wug test." Try them out with the kids in your life (or, yes, even by yourself). They'll demonstrate how children as young as three or four can internalize complex grammatical codes no one has necessarily ever tried to teach them. And let us know what surprised you!
A "linguistic resurrection" you ask? Krista’s presentation at the United Nations was featured on TED.com! Krista's TEDTalk presents ways in which we can ground + humanize the word "compassion" by using language more fully and by looking to people who exemplify this aspiration. Watch and share what your ideas.
I’m a research junkie and a word nerd. When I was in graduate school, I spent a year researching one of the earliest Old English poems, “The Dream of the Rood.” The project began as a lexical analysis for a linguistics class, and what I discovered was that many words had multiple senses — and the available translations didn’t emphasize this. I ended up doing my own translation of all 256 lines. It was immensely rewarding to unfold levels and layers of meaning this way.
Compelling video of elephants mourning the death of a calf, and a magnificent segment on the secret language of elephants.
We often struggle with crafting interesting or catchy titles for each new program. Sometimes we latch on to something one of our guests said in the interview, as was the case with our recent program, which may win the dubious honor of having the longest title: Curiosity Over Assumptions, Interreligiosity Meets a New Generation.
But, please do know that it was not without much debate and extensive brainstorming among our entire staff to try to arrive at a title for the work of Aziza Hasan and Malka Haya Fenyvesi. With humility, I share some of the runners-up:
After we replayed our program with David Treuer last week, we received an interesting story from listener Stephanie Fielding in Uncasville, Connecticut. In the program, Treuer talks about his efforts to help sustain the Ojibwe language:
“What I really love about language revitalization, what is so key to it, is that it’s always been ours and it’s a chance to define ourselves on and in our own terms and in ways that have nothing to do with what’s been taken. We can define ourselves by virtue of what we’ve saved.”