Language: The Dress of Thought

March 16, 2008

Things go better with "biting the wax tadpole"? That doesn't sound right, does it? Yet that's the literal translation of Coca-Cola that Chinese shopkeepers came up with...a set of characters pronounced "ke-kou ke-la." In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge we'll explore the exotic world of foreign languages. We'll hear the confessions of a language fanatic. Also, six-word memoirs. "One life. Six words. What's yours?"

  1. Elizabeth Little on "Biting the Wax Tadpole: Confessions of a Language Fanatic"

    Elizabeth Little is a writer and editor who collects languages. She tells Jim Fleming about the perils of learning tonal languages.

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  2. Rachel Fershleiser and Larry Smith on "Not Quite What I Was Planning"

    Rachel Fershleiser and Larry Smith tell Anne Strainchamps how they got started soliciting six-word memoirs, recite some of their favorites, and say that crafting them can become an addiction.

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  3. Derek Bickerton on "Bastard Tongues"

    Derek Bickerton has spent more than 30 years researching Creole languages on four continents for his book, "Bastard Tongues: A Trailblazing Linguist Finds Clues to Our Common Humanity in the World's Lowliest Languages."

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  4. Rick Moranis on "The Agoraphobic Cowboy"

    Rick Moranis has had a successful career as an actor, comedian and writer. He's appeared in the films "Ghostbusters," and "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids." He was also a cast member of the long running sketch comedy television series "SCTV."

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