Lise Dobrin

Lise Dobrin and Language Documentation in Papua New Guinea

Q&A: Lise Dobrin, Associate Professor & Director of the Interdepartmental Program in Linguistics at the University of Virginia's Department of Anthropology.
Oxford spires

Old English Has a Serious Image Problem

Although studying the language known as “Anglo-Saxon” helped women advance in the academy, the subject is fraught with racist associations.
gift or poison

Friend or Faux? The Linguistic Trickery of False Friends

"False friends" appear or sound like words in their own language, but have different meanings in others. They give us insight into how language changes.
Rivera Painting

How to Talk About Diego Rivera and Mexican Art

Diego Rivera's artwork has always been intimately tied to the culture of his native Mexico, although this was not always seen as a sophisticated choice.
young women talking

The Totally “Destructive” (Yet Oddly Instructive) Speech Patterns of… Young Women?

Two years ago, this column sprang into life by enthusiastically wading into the absurdly long-running debate about some ...
Bush and Rumsfeld

The Backfire Effect

The backfire effect is when people double-down on their beliefs even when these beliefs are shown to be factually incorrect.
talk therapy

When Language Can Cure What Ails You

Healthy talk is often promoted as the way for us to become even better humans. But is talking about our health always a key to actual better health?
Trump mouth

The Language Wars

As a society becomes increasingly unstable, linguistic innovation happens more rapidly.
Dr. Evil

Very British Villains (and Other Anglo-Saxon Attitudes to Accents)

What do peoples' accents really reveal about them? The villainous British accent crystallizes the love-hate special relationship between the US and the UK.
crab-eating macaque monkey

What Makes a Brain “Speech Ready?”

Can monkeys talk? According to new research, they could, if their brains would let them.