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midweek Connect: 6/30/21 - Living Languages


Greetings and Happy Midweek,

To finish our June focus on the marvels of the languages we speak, I’d like to explore with you some facets of “living languages”. We are surrounded every day by so many different types of languages, and versions thereof. Some we understand and use fluently, some we strive to learn, and some actually go totally unnoticed by us - but are actively communicating information to whomever is a speaker of that language.


One of the most popular Global SKILLs presentations, which I have done numerous times in the past few years in diverse contexts, has been my “Living Language” demonstration (see portions of one demo in the link below)*. I think this demonstration never fails to delight and at the same time intrigue participants because a real live language is being analyzed and learned in real time right in front of their eyes, and they are invited to be a part of the process. And it also delights and intrigues me as I do the demonstration because each time, I learn so much - about a language new to me, but also about the whole process and dynamic of language learning and cross-cultural communication.


But my favorite part of the “Living Language Demonstrations” is the minute given to the native speaker at the beginning, when they introduce themself using their language - proudly, fluently, beautifully highlighting this - their very own - unique language. What a joy and a privilege to be able to hear, and sometimes interact in, other languages and the cultures they represent!


What about you - what is one example from this past week of a “living language” moment you enjoyed?

Share that with a friend or here with us.

And check out the LINKs below for the sample demonstration, and a few other fun examples of ‘living languages’.

Until next week,

Betsy


* If you are interested in having me do a “Living Language” demonstration for your group, send me an email (betsy.barbour@gmail.com) and we’ll plan one which perfectly fits your interests and goals!


Global SKILLs LINKs

~ portions of one of my “Living Language” demonstrations, done in 2014 in Washington, DC

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iumt_wep0j8

~ a contemporary solution to a real life multi-lingual challenge: https://www.pehalnews.in/the-multilingual-voice-app-helping-indians-shop-online/596594/

~ once ridiculed, now scientists confirm that indeed, plants also communicate in their own languages. One sample: https://www.quantamagazine.org/the-secret-language-of-plants-20131216/

~ and yes, of course, animals speak their own languages - which are being increasingly understood by humans: https://www.npr.org/2021/05/30/1001684767/scientist-joyce-poole-on-what-elephants-have-to-say


2021 ~ Celebrating 40 years of working in

intercultural communications and global community building

Connecting, Collaborating, Cultivating Community


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