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The Language Hoax: An interesting lecture I watched on YouTube

I was listening to a lecture on linguistics over the weekend that I found quite interesting. Being a flat out layman in the field, I thought other non-linguists with an interest in the field may also enjoy the lecture. The link to it on YouTube is here:


September 25, 2017



After watching the lecture, I think that no language in the world limits you permanently in any way, and if necessity arises, you create a jargon in that language and you can express all what you want.


Language hoax? What is the video about?


The lecturerer talks about a lot of misconceptions that have come about regarding language reflecting culture or vis versa. Even this layman understood him and enjoyed it.


All the funny differences between the many languages.

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Great intro to the book. Thanks for providing the link!


I've gotten the video up and I've watched a few minutes of it. But, I have to finish it later because I'm short on time. I wanted to say a thing though, just in case I get caught up and forget to come back to this discussion and that video. The Sapir-Wharf Hypothesis the speaker talks about wasn't a hoax. People rightly challenged their hypothesis, yes. It's pronouncements overreached the scope of language's direct influence. However, like many theories, parts of it have merit. So, tossing 100% of it into the rubbish bin would be a tragic loss to the linguistics community and everyone else who could benefit from knowing more about how language and people influence each other.

A while back, I created a discussion titled How languages shape the way we think. There is a reason languages change over time. There is indeed a reciprocal impact between language and culture. However, there isn't a "magic bullet". That is to say, people don't encounter one, standalone word and automatically we are robots programmed by it or see a different color green.

Maybe the video already covered what I've wanted to say. I'm looking forward to watching the rest of it. But, I wanted to stress that I dont' advise over correcting from "Sapir-Whorf was 100% right to" "Sapir-Whorf was 100% garbage." Language matters and we should do both: use it mindfully and stay curious about what we can do with it.


*I watched the video and found it pretty interesting too, including the Dippity- Do/ Nivea / drops / clumps experiment that asked American children and Japanese children to choose which 2 were related. -- Thanks for sharing.

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