Origins 0f Language and Languages

November 24, 2014 With Frederic Schwink and Jason Merchant

When did language in its “modern” form (that is, with grammar, syntax and extended vocabulary) actually come from…in both space and time? How do languages (such as French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian and Romansch} differentiate from a common source (Latin)? Why do children acquire second or third languages much more easily than adults?¬† Our guests are both leading linguistic scholars: Fred Schwink of the University of Illinois and Jason Merchant of the University of Chicago who joined in this discussion in 2005. ¬†Incidentally, we try out some great tongue-twisters and try to identify some languages offered by callers.