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Issue 3, Season 2

April 27, 2015• Schwa Fire

We close the second season ranging as far as Nicaragua, where Emily Leidel went to see how the building of the new canal will imperil a tiny community that speaks an endangered language and the efforts to bring it back to life (A Canal Where a Language Used To Be). Accent pride and folk linguistics comes home to YouTube, which hosts 400,000 Accent Tag videos—a fad that linguists started, as Debbie Nathan investigates (Accent Tag Nation). Gallaudet linguist Julie Hochgesang describes the problems she had getting an ASL interpreter for a medical procedure—an occurrence whose prevalence will shock you ( When the Hippocratic Oath Doesn't Translate).   

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A Canal Where a Language Used to Be

A Rama-speaking community lives in the path of the new Nicaraguan canal. Will the construction destroy the community and its language -- or is something else in store? Emily Leidel went to find out.  (A 10-minute read)

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Accent Tag Nation

Posting Accent Tag videos to YouTube is a popular thing to do. Accent taggers put their regional accents on display, suggesting that the average American is really a linguistic descriptivist at heart. Debbie Nathan tells how Accent Tagging started — and what the phenomenon has taught linguists about language in people's lives. (A 10-minute read) 

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