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Podcast Series: Talkin' About Talk

College of Charleston

Talkin' About Talk is a collection of fascinating insights into language: a series of 52 little essays—conversational in tone, light and anecdotal in style—that encourage language study and invite listeners to look further into the subject of each essay.  The series, part of the 2005: The Year of Languages celebration, was co-sponsored by the College of Charleston (SC) and the National Museum of Language. The material was written by a wide-ranging group of experts, including some of the most well-known linguists in America.  The architect and voice of Talkin' About Talk is Dr. Rick Rickerson, professor Emeritus at the College of Charleston.

These segments have been made available gratis by the College of Charleston and Rick Rickerson. Please contact the College of Charleston about permissions. View the information page on the College of Charleston website. View all files on iTunes.

Talkin' About Talk
JANUARY  
Program #1

Robert Rodman
"What's special about language?"

Program #2 Paul Lewis
"How many languages are there in the world?"
Program #3 Barry Hilton
"What was the first language?"
Program #4 Allan Bomhard
"Did all languages come from one source?"
FEBRUARY  
Program #5 Marty Abbott/Steve Ackley
"What is the Year of Languages?"
Program #6 John Algeo
"Where Did English Come From?"  
Program #7 Rick Rickerson
"Whatever happened to Esperanto?"
Program #8 Orin Hargraves
"Who owns English?"
MARCH  
Program #9 Walt Wolfram
"Do all Southerners have the same dialect?"
Program #10 Catherine Ingold
 "Is there a language crisis in the US?"
Program #11 Nina Garrett
"What does it take to learn a Second Language?"
Program #12 June Phillips
"What's the History of Language Study in the US?"
Program #13 Gerald Lampe
"Should we be learning Arabic?"
APRIL  
Program #14 Leila Monaghan
"Is sign language a universal language?"
Program #15 Walt Wolfram
"Are dialects dying the the US?"
Program #16 John McWhorter 
"Why Do Languages Change?"   
Program #17 John Lipski
"Is Pidgin English Just Bad English?"   
MAY  
Program #18 Nancy Nenno
"Was German Almost the Language of America?"   
Program #19 Roberta Golinkoff/Kathy Hirsh-Pasek
"How Do Babies Learn Their Mother Tongue?"   
Program #20 Katie Sprang
"Can Monolingualism Be Cured?"
Program #21 Barry Hilton
"Why is Chinese so hard to learn?"
JUNE  
Program #22 Gladys Lipton
"Should we teach languages in elementary school?"
Program #23 Peter T. Daniels
"Where did writing come from?"
Program #24 Steven Weinberger
"What Causes Foreign Accents?"
Program #25 Amelia Murdoch
"How can you keep languages in a museum?"
Program #26 Marianne Mithun
"How many Native American languages are there?"
JULY  
Program #27 Ben Rifkin
"Should we still be studying Russian?"
Program #28 Geoffrey K. Pullum
"Does Language influence the way we think?"
Program #29 Erin McKean
"How are dictionaries made?"
Program #30 Robyn Holman
"What's Cajun and where did it come from?"
AUGUST  
Program #31 Dennis Preston
"Can you set standards for language?"
Program #32 Maria Carreira
"What is the future of Spanish in the US?"
Program #33 G. Tucker Childs
"Is it a dialect or a language?"
Program #34 Blaine Erickson
"Is Japanese related to Chinese?"
SEPTEMBER  
Program #35 Pardee Lowe Jr. 
"Why are linguists interested in Icelandic?"
Program #36 Michael Erard
"Why is language a National Security issue?"
Program #37 Donald Osborne
"Is Swahili the language of Africa?"
Program #38 Robert Rodman
"Is each person's language unique?"
Program #39 David Savignac 
"How good is machine translation?"
OCTOBER  

Program #40

Kevin Hendzel
"What does it take to be an interpreter?"
Program #41 David Goldberg
"Who speaks what languages in the U.S.?"
Program #42 Sheri Spaine Long
"Why study abroad?"
Program #43 Dr. Michael Erard
"What does language have to do with national security?"
NOVEMBER  
Program #44 Dr. Michael Erard
"How many languages is it possible for a person to speak?"
Program #45 Dr. Henk Haarmann
"Is there such a thing as too much language learning?"
Program #46

Dora Johnson
"What does it mean to be bilingual?"

Program #47 Chris Moseley
"Why do languages die?"
DECEMBER  
Program #48 Akira Yamamoto, Marcellino Berardo,
Tracy Hirata-Edds, Mary Linn, Lizette Peter,
and Kimiko Yamamoto

"Can threatened or dying languages be revived?"
Program #49 Chris Moseley
"Does anybody here speak Klingon?"
Program #50

Dr. Paul B. Garrett
"Is language important enough to fight about?"

Program #51 Dr. Frederick Jackson
"Can you make a living loving languages?"
Program #52 "What don't we know about language?"