HOW DOES OUR LANGUAGE SHAPE THE WAY WE THINK?

For a long time, the idea that language might shape thought was considered at best untestable and more often simply wrong. Research in my labs at Stanford University and at MIT has helped reopen this question. We have collected data around the world: from China, Greece, Chile, Indonesia, Russia, and Aboriginal Australia. What we have learned is that people who speak different languages do indeed think differently and that even flukes of grammar can profoundly affect how we see the world. Language is a uniquely human gift, central to our experience of being human. Appreciating its role in constructing our mental lives brings us one step closer to understanding the very nature of humanity.

A Way with Words

A Way with Words is an upbeat and lively hour-long public radio show about language examined through history, culture, and family about slang, grammar, old sayings, word origins, regional dialects, family expressions, and speaking and writing well.

Interview with Professor Stephen Krashen

British Council is proud to present an interview with Professor Stephen Krashen. Professor Krashen was kind enough to speak to us on camera during his visit to Istanbul and appearance at Yıldız Technical University’s School of Foreign Languages, 1st International ELT Symposium.

The wrong and right way to learn a foreign language

We do not master languages by hard study and memorization, or by producing it. Rather, we acquire language when we understand what people tell us and what we read, when we get “comprehensible input.” As we get comprehensible input through listening and reading, we acquire (or “absorb”) the grammar and vocabulary of the second language.