New York Times: Babel No More is “gripping,” “entertaining,” “informative”. Here’s the review from the Times. (Graphic by Ian Adelman). Babel No More by Michael Erard is described on the front cover as “the search for the world’s most extraordinary language learners.” The book. Among the most surprising qualities of “Babel No More,” Michael Erard’s globe- trekking adventure in search of the world’s virtuosos of.
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Oct 08, ABC rated it really liked it. One example of the disorganization michwel the issue of shadowing, which could have, if well presented, provide a clue as to how languages can be acquired. Drinking two cups of coffee increases neuronal activity in the frontal lobe, where working memory is controlled, and in the anterior cingulum, where attention is controlled.
Babel No More
Instead of working from an established thesis and then presenting evidence, this book functions as part intellectual exploration, part detective story. The final conclu I have mixed feelings about this book. They were all “hyperpolyglots,” “language superlearners,” or “massive multilinguals. This book aims at finding whether real hyperpolyglots, a kind of neologism for people who can speak numerous languages, truly exists.
Babel No More: The Search for the World’s Most Extraordinary Language Learners
I havent stopped studying languages Then I moved to Amsterdam and learned to speak Dutch at a B2 level in a year, which I considered very slow learning but went at the speed of mre classes because I didnt want to put in too much extra energy. Looking for beautiful books?
One interesting point is that there isn’t really a commonly agreed upon definition of what it means to know a language, or be fluent in it. Other patients hear friendly voices in their native languages, hostile ones in their second languages. The author also poorly attempts to describe the human brain as a projection on a world map with statements like “If your fingers are holding American and Asia then where your thumb is resting on Mexico is the frontal lobe,” and such.
Had a brush with gaelic and Dutch where I learned some basic phrases and pronunciation but put them back down, having dismissed them as not useful. The tribe of those claiming extraordinary linguistic capacities is rife with impostors and self-promoters. Read what others are saying about Babel No More.
What spurred your interest in studying polyglot linguistics? Probably the biggest impact came late in grad school, inwhen I realized that I would be happier as a writer, not as an academic.
And because I’m in one of the erarr linguistics programs in the world in a country that famously speaks multiple languages well I certainly was, though I give him credit for trying. As a person who enjoys language and the mlchael of new language, I was deeply interested in this book.
Maybe the strangest part was a lengthy description of the brain’s structure that instructed the reader to picture the brain as edard globe with the axis at Greenwich, facing you, and one hand on the Middle East and one hand on the northeast coast of Brazil, in order to tell us where Broca’s micuael Wernicke’s areas are Some people date languages for a long time but eventually break up with them.
Case studies are interesting, patterns of hyperpolyglot personality and methods emerge, and eventually research is reviewed. To get the benefit, you actually have to chew gum as you are studying; for some reason you can’t merely efard your jaw up and down. Product details Format Hardback pages Dimensions x x erarc What do an Italian cardinal, a Connecticut blacksmith, and a German diplomat have in common with an MIT linguist, a Hungarian translator, and a Scottish church organist?
It spoke to me and I knew not everyone liked it but I read books like Eat Pray Love where Liz talks about how she loves the taste of Italian words in her mouth. Book ratings by Goodreads. Aug 13, Sophia rated it it was amazing Shelves: The author also poorly attempts to describe the human brain as a projection on a world map with s The author was way too verbose and essentially asked, then repeated, all the questions the reader had in his or her mind anyway.
Having access to the library collections was a huge influence too. I think I’m going to look into french and Afrikaans while improving my spoken and my academic Dutch.
Erard begins his quest by investigating the most famous hyperpolyglot, Giuseppe Mezzofanti, a century priest who allegedly spoke 72 languages. Taken together, their pursuits present a natural experiment into the limits and the nature of memory and language.
Babel No More | The Search for the World’s Most Extraordinary Language Learners
But as a work of research on a complex social and linguistic phenomenon, this book is quite an accomplishment. Photograph by Wyatt McSpadden. The results of his research are frankly disappointing. Learning foreign languages is a topic that interests me greatly — since retiring from my career in statistics I’ve made a concerted effort to achieve mastery of Spanish and French, and hope eventually to add Italian and Portuguese to that list.
Another reason is that they have powerful higher-order cognitive skills like working memory and executive function, which helps them use a lot of languages. Check out the top books of the year on our michhael Best Books of I carried my Latin books with me everywhere.
However, things picked up by the michaek chapter and you really start to dig into the lives of these people. Oh man, and the brain as a globe was just annoying, as is the analogy of hyperpolyglots as Peter Pan or near-extinct African animals. It won’t, however, tell you much about how to acquire new languages.