An event held in New York City with the best selling authors and public intellectuals Steven Pinker and John McWhorter where they discuss their work in lingu...
John McWhorterI was honored to speak with Steven Pinker for a couple hours the other night about, well, a lot -- such as 1) language and 2) progress denialism. Whorfianism, a bit of race, whales ... youtu.be/NeHW0MJSxMs via @YouTube
Listen to The Fifth Column - Analysis, Commentary, Sedition episodes free, on demand. Recorded 9/8/2017
Moynihan’s back from Russia and has the drinking stories to prove it. Normally reasonable journalos lose their goddamn minds over Betsy DeVos’...
How long have we been starting our sentences with “so”?
John McWhorterAbout weekly somebody asks me why people are starting sentences with SO "lately." It's not precisely "lately" but there is a story involved, which of course takes in Terry Gross, Lotte Lenya, Mark Zuckerberg and Blossom Dearie! @lexiconvalleyslate.com/human-interest… via @slate
Are there types of languages that are unique from other types of languages? Are there newer languages that are formed from other languages, but have less vocabulary, less grammar, less stuff? Is that what we mean by “creoles”? John McWhorter thinks...
John McWhorterLinguists: the folks at @AMLGpodcast have put up a head-to-head between me and Salikoko Mufwene, who insists that creole studies has been a 50 year mistake. Just a preview, too, of a whole two hours. I hold nothing back, frankly - take a listen!
Listen to Lexicon Valley Episode No. 145: Subscribe in iTunes ∙ RSS feed ∙ Download ∙ Play in another tab Slate Plus members: Get your ad-free podcast ...
John McWhorterPeople have been asking for a show on Southern English for a while - here it is! Where'd it come from? Here's what's known, plus Tallulah Bankhead, Lillian Carter, Bosom Buddies, and Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. slate.com/articles/podca… via @slate
Listen to Slate’s The Gist: Slate Plus members: Get your ad-free podcast feed. Listen to The Gist via Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify, Stitcher, or G ...
John McWhorterSat in for Mike Pesca at @SlateGist, with @glukianoff about his and @JonHaidt’s new Coddling of the American Mind. I spieled on safe spaces and the line from then to now on social justice. This podcasting thing is growing on me ...
John McWhorter on the peculiarly universal order of color words: almost all languages acquire their color words in the same order. Listen to Lexicon Va ...
John McWhorterIf a language has just 3 colors they’re black, white and red. Not red, blue and green. If just 5 the next two are green and yellow. Not blue or brown. I discuss, this week. Some languages have no colors. No pink in English till the 1730s!
John McWhorterSpot on, @ZachWeiner! Quite common to get agreement on one construction but major objection on others (usually, "Billy and me went to the store" rather than "Billy and I"). Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal #smbc #hiveworks
As more English speakers adopt the singular "they" and reject the gender binary, resisters will have to accept that language changes over time.
John McWhorterMy take on the new THEY in writing, for those disinclined to my podcast. In short, it takes some getting used to, but so do plenty of words and constructions we deliberately internalize rather than learn as toddlers.
The acronym has ushered in a new era of informal communication.
John McWhorterWow! The Atlantic people did a fantastic job making some musings of mine of texting into a two-minute show. The animation, the music, the editing - what times we live in! Not only because there's texting, but the technology to make clips like this.
Listen to Lexicon Valley Episode No. 142: Subscribe in iTunes ∙ RSS feed ∙ Download ∙ Play in another tab Slate Plus members: Get your ad-free podcast ...
John McWhorterThe new THEY: "Jocelyn is tired and they've decided to stay home; call them later." This week's @lexiconvalley suggests we master it - pronouns are always dazzlingly fluid. Along the way this week: Ethels Merman and Waters + the parrot joke restored!
A discussion on whether non-black artists and writers should or should not use African American Vernacular English.
John McWhorterKind of an audio version of my Atlantic piece on Black English, poetry and appropriation. As always, one feels somehow cleansed and honored to do a segment with Brian Lehrer. Also, we did Trump and the idea that media bias muzzles his views.
It’s not the word that matters—it’s the sentiment.
John McWhorterMy latest for the Atlantic. Trump has been calling black people the N-word via implication forever - him actually saying the word is less repulsive than the sentiments it stands for, which he so readily expresses.
John H. McWhorter is Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. He has written academic books on creole linguistics, including the book we’ll be talking about today, but also a number of popular books on...
John McWhorterAnother interview on my battle against the creolists trying to teach the world that being a good or smart person means pretending creoles aren’t special or interesting!
John McWhorterMy latest conversation with @GlennLoury. Mainly, why microaggressions, while real, don’t deep-six heterodox black thought. Plus why Glenn likes doing panel discussions more than I do.