Canguro English

de Canguro English

Canguro English presents a podcast about language for people learning languages.

Episodios

Accent and identity (with Erik Singer)

por Canguro English

If you know me and my work then you know that I talk a lot about identity, and especially how your accent is a big part of your identity: your accent tells the story of your life.

But if you do want to change your accent, or improve your pronunciation, how do you do it?

Recently I had the pleasure of talking to someone with expert answers to that question: Erik Singer, a dialect coach who helps film and television actors to speak with an accent that is not their native accent, and because of this he knows exactly what it takes mentally and physically to change the way you speak.

In this interview we talk about how to change your accent, the best ways to practice, but more importantly if and why you should try to ‘speak like a native’.

I hope you enjoy it.

The state of modern linguistics | The Story of Language | Bonus episode

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this bonus episode we talk about the state of modern linguistics, including the effects of the replication crisis, scientific fraud, Anglocentrism, and how the underappreciated work of Charles Sanders Peirce might offer a universal theory of how language works.

Embodied cognition | The Story of Language | Episode 12

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we discuss embodied cognition and the uncontroversial fact that the brain is an organ of the body, which then leads to the very controversial conclusion that our brain is no more important than our skin, and that imagining the world as if you had eyes in your toes can lead to some revolutionary new thinking.

Dark matter of the mind | The Story of Language | Episode 11

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we discuss the content of Dan’s book Dark Matter of the Mind, which lays out Dan’s theory of culture. The book contains bold statements as ‘brains do not learn’ and ‘science is NOT pure rational thought’, but after this conversation you might change your mind about the raw power of viewing the world from the perspective of Dark Matter.

The cognitive revolution | The Story of Language | Episode 10

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Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about the cognitive revolution, and whether the revolution really exists at all. We discuss the beginnings and the state of the art of the study of cognition and show why it’s important to celebrate all discoveries as progress, even if they are doomed to failure.

Endangered languages | The Story of Language | Episode 9

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about endangered languages. I ask why languages are important, what is lost when a language disappears, the cultural and economic factors behind language loss, and the truth about the best way to stop languages from disappearing.

Language acquisition | The Story of Language | Episode 8

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about the big questions in language acquisition. Is there a Language Acquisition Device? Is language learned or innate? How does child learning differ from adult learning? Should syntax be the basis for language analysis? And are humans really the only things on the planet with language, or do other animals have it too?

Metaphor in language | The Story of Language | Episode 7

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about the fundamental role of metaphor in language, from its involvement in the creation and evolution of language to its role in the modern understanding of language through the work of Lakoff and Johnson, and the study of semiotics.

Learn English with a dictionary (with Peter Sokolowski)

por Canguro English

People are passionate about language, especially language change, and words matter. And nobody knows this better Peter Sokolowski, who is an editor at the Merriam-Webster dictionary, one of the most famous and most trusted dictionaries in the world. Peter has spent his life immersed in words and their meanings, and all the complications that come along with that work.  In this interview we talk about the role of the dictionary, standard and non-standard English, language and culture, how to learn English with a dictionary, and how dictionaries are a sign of human agreement, and sometimes profound disagreement.

1 powerful mind trick to get fluency

por Canguro English

In this podcast you will learn how Pygmalion and the Wizard of Oz can teach you the secret to fluency in English that has been causing controversy for more than 50 years.

Destroying language myths (with Shana Poplack)

por Canguro English

It’s an unfortunate fact that many people don’t know the truth about how language works outside of their grammar books, in the real world, but recently I spoke to someone who is trying to change that. Shana Poplack and her sociolinguistics laboratory at the University of Ottawa are known as the mythbusters, because they destroy damaging myths about language and language change. They don’t look at language in its ideal state: they look at how language is used every day by real people, and the discoveries they make are often controversial, and fly in the face of deeply-held beliefs, but their discoveries are always based in truth.

Where words come from and how to remember them (with Mark Forsyth)

por Canguro English

There are few people in the world who know as much about where words come from as Mark Forsyth. His first book, The Etymologicon, was a journey through the origins of many common words and their connections, and he has since written various other books about words, language, and writing. In this interview Mark tells fascinating and entertaining stories about where words come from, how to remember them, and how to use those words to be a better communicator.

Grammar based on the unfamiliar (with Robert Van Valin)

por Canguro English

It’s an unfortunate fact that most of linguistic theory is based on a few major European languages, especially English, which actually damages our understanding of how the thousands of languages in the world might work. But there is one man who has spent his career trying to correct the balance. Robert Van Valin is one of the developers of Role and Reference Grammar or RRG which aims to explain language by focusing on some of the most unfamiliar languages in the world. In this interview we talk about the fundamentals of RRG, and what unites and divides the world's languages.

How to speak English faster

por Canguro English

In this podcast you will learn the connection between Pixar, red triangles, information, thought, and fluency. Enjoy!

The weight of expectation

por Canguro English

In this podcast I talk about the positive and negative effects of the weight of expectation, and how living the in past or the future might be stopping you from getting fluency in English.

Touch wood

por Canguro English

In this episode you'll learn why touching wood, throwing salt, and car accidents can help you to see the truth about learning a language.

How many holes does a straw have?

por Canguro English

In this episode you'll learn why culture connects London taxi drivers, donuts, smiling Japanese people, and Australian shop assistants.

Immersion is a state of mind

por Canguro English

In this episode you'll learn the hard lessons of my army father-in-law, who failed to learn a language after 14 years of 'immersion'.

Question everything to get fluency

por Canguro English

In this episode you will learn about the differences and similarities between humans and animals, and why you shouldn't take everything you know about language learning for granted.

Why you need to learn slowly to get fluency

por Canguro English

In this episode I talk about what mathematics really means, why Mathematicians asked schools to stop teaching calculus, and the parallels between maths and language. In this episode you might be surprised to learn that the secret to fluency is to slow down.

Construction grammar and language learning (with Remi van Trijp)

por Canguro English

Recently I had the pleasure of talking to Remi van Trijp, head of the Language Research Unit and the Sony Computer Science Laboratories in Paris, and one of the main developers of Fluid Construction Grammar. His team is trying to answer some of the most profound questions in linguistics by combining techniques from computational linguistics, artificial intelligence and robotics. It’s complicated and very technical work, but as you’ll see in this interview Remi has an incredible ability to explain complex things in an easy-to-understand way.

How Language Began | The Story of Language | Episode 6

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about how language began, including language evolution vs language change, how animal and human communication are similar and different, and the evidence for why language is probably millions of years old, not thousands.

How language works (with Ted Gibson)

por Canguro English

Recently I had the pleasure of talking to Ted Gibson from his eponymous TedLab at MIT which researches why human languages are the way they are, how people learn and process language, and the relationship between language and culture. In this interview we talk about his work with numbers, colours, word order, and information theory across various languages and his search for simplicity in explaining the complexity of language.

You are STUPID and LAZY (how to speak English PERFECTLY)

por Canguro English

Are you stupid and lazy? Do you want to speak English perfectly? Then this podcast is for you! We are going to take a journey through the light and dark of the human mind to discover why you are so bad at English and the secret to speaking perfect English.

How to study english well (with Paul Nation)

por Canguro English

There is no doubt that this is the best time in history to learn a language, especially English. We are surrounded by content in English, English language learning apps, English teachers, English courses, information. But one very important question remains: what do we do with all this information? HOW do we study? HOW do we learn a language. One man who knows the answer to this question is Paul Nation. He has been studying and writing about language acquisition and language teaching methodology for more than 50 years, and in this interview he talks about the four strands of language learning, and how by following this simple concept, based on a lifetime of research, both teachers and students can have success at language teaching, and language learning.

The theory and practice of field linguistics | The Story of Language | Episode 5

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about the theory and the practice of field linguistics, including how to survive in the field, what to take, and what to bring back.

Should I learn British or American English? | How are they different?

por Canguro English

Students ask me all the time if they should learn British English or American English, and in this video you'll discover the real differences between UK and US English and how it's not about language rules, it's about culture. You will discover how they are different and if you should study British or American English.

How to write business English (with Ellen Jovin)

por Canguro English

When you think about improving your writing in English, especially business writing, you probably think about studying lots of rules, and memorising specific phrases, and complicated vocabulary. But recently I spoke to Ellen Jovin who’s been writing professionally and teaching professionals how to write for more than 20 years, and in this interview you’ll discover that good business writing isn’t about language, it’s about people.

Do you want to speak English like a native? (with Heather Hansen)

por Canguro English

It’s a sad fact that the English that millions of people learn in classrooms all over the world, often doesn’t match the reality of English outside the classroom. One person who knows the reality of English as a global language is Heather Hansen. She teaches professionals from the world’s biggest companies how to communicate in English all over the world. And the secret to successful global communication? It isn’t about being like a native speaker, or having an RP accent, or using ‘standard’ English. This is a powerful interview and I hope it makes teachers and students all over the world question their assumptions about what it means to learn and use English.

Linguistic Relativity | The Story of Language | Episode 4

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about linguistic relativity: the idea that the language we speak can change the way we think.

How languages are learned (with Patsy Lightbown)

por Canguro English

In the world of language there are few people as experienced, or as respected, as Patsy Lightbown, Distinguished Professor Emerita at Concordia University in Canada. She has been working in the field of language teaching and language learning for more than 40 years as a researcher, writer, editor, and consultant and she literally wrote the book on how languages are learned. In this interview we talk about language acquisition, language learning, language teaching and what life has taught her about the way education works. I hope you enjoy it!

What is culture? | The Story of Language | Episode 3

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about culture: we discuss exactly what it is, how it exists on a macro and micro level, how it affects our language and our cognition, and how without it, we would die.

Get fluent English in 2020 | 9 tips to help you learn English

por Canguro English

Do you want to really succeed at learning English in 2020? It doesn't matter if this is the first or the tenth time you have tried to get fluency in English, these 9 simple steps will help you to succeed at your English learning goals.

The Piraha Language | The Story of Language | Episode 2

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. In this episode we talk about the Piraha language, and what it tells us about the intersection of language and culture. We also talk about the practice of the science of linguistics, animal vs human communication, universal translation, and what unites and what divides us as humans.

Meet Dan Everett | The Story of Language | Episode 1

por Canguro English

Welcome to The Story of Language: an original podcast series about language, linguistics, cognition, and culture. My name is Christian Saunders and I am an English teacher, and throughout this series I will be in discussion with Dan Everett: linguist, anthropologist, philosopher, and author. In this episode you will meet Dan, and we will talk about the story of his life, including his upbringing near the Mexican border, his research stays with hunter-gatherers in the Amazon jungle, hunting giant anacondas, his famous disagreement with Noam Chomsky, and what his lifetime of work can tell us about language, thought, and being human.