Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Languages in the News: January 2016

Since we've already reached the end of January, today we're taking a look back at some of the best news stories and articles from the past month.

Can You Really Sum Up a Whole Year in One Word?

Unsurprisingly, our first bit of language news came in the form of a look back at 2015. This article from The Guardian looked at the terms from the English language that defined 2015. It's definitely recommended if you're interested in the ever-changing lexicon of the English language. You can read it here.

The 1967 Revolution That Allowed Swedes to Finally Call Each Other “You”

This article that was featured on Slate covered a fascinating language shift that made Swedish much more informal. If you're familiar with languages that have formal pronouns, you'll definitely want to read this article on the Swedish language. You can do so here.

Food Culture Gives Rise To New 'Eatymology'

American public radio website NPR told us how foodies and our fondness for food are helping create new English words that describe our culinary obsessions, particularly in the United States. If you're interested in the latest food lingo, you can read NPR's article here.

Sorry, grammar nerds. The singular ‘they’ has been declared Word of the Year.

This article from the Washington Post looks at how English grammar has changed, particularly in terms of personal pronouns. When there was increasing demand for a gender-neutral pronoun, the English language answered the call. If you'd like to learn more, you can read the article here.

How did the months get their names?

The Oxford Dictionary's blog started the year by looking at the months that define our years. As expected, they covered the etymology from January through December in a blog post that told us the roots of all the weird words we use to describe almost every lunar cycle of the year. If you're interested, you can read the post here.

Are there any other language articles you enjoyed in January? Please tell us and our readers about them in the comments below.