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, Jun 15, 2016
With the "moribund" state of language learning in Australia in the spotlight, Ingrid Piller busts some myths, arguing that it does not have to be this way and that something can be done about it.
, Mar 30, 2016
Lurking in the seemingly innocuous pages of a classic children’s story is the perplexing use of an extraneous preposition. What’s it doing there? And what can it tell us about how language changes? Richard Ingold investigates.
, Oct 16, 2015
The meaning of the word ‘marriage’ has been hotly debated in the media and in global politics over the last few years. To explore the role of language in shaping the debate about social changes, here’s Elisabeth Griffiths with an examination of the terms used by those for and against changing the legal definition of ‘marriage’.
, Oct 08, 2015
This Mental Health Week, Erica Dodd explains why casually using terms that deride mental illness can have more of an effect than you might think.
, Jul 23, 2015
Ever wonder how to refer to people with disabilities without being offensive? Louisa Willoughby has some rules to follow that should avoid any unintended rudeness.
, Jun 12, 2015
A newspaper closes its doors but a linguistic window opens! Allie Severin thinks the shutdown of mX could mean good things for Australian English.
, Mar 08, 2015
Arabic is not a small, minority language. It is the fourth most widely spoken language in Australia. The decision to ban some NSW prisoners speaking it is not only possibly a human rights breach but also just lazy, according to Greg Dickson.
, Oct 21, 2013
Fairfax media reports that Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has sent a list of appropriate terminology for referring to refugee boat arrivals, including referring to the people as 'illegal arrivals' and 'detainees'. How does changing terminology change how we think about something?
, Feb 21, 2013
International Mother Language Day commemorates a political struggle for linguistic recognition of Bangla over 60 years ago. Celebrate by learning a bit about your friends' mother languages, writes Aidan Wilson.
, Nov 30, 2012
What's the harm in casually using the phrase 'that's so gay'? Nothing particularly sinister is meant by it and no offence is usually intended. 1,500,000 tweets give a different impression. Greg Dickson writes that homophobic language negatively affects gay people regardless of speaker's intentions:
, Jun 22, 2012
William Steed writes: The 2011 census data is out. One of the questions it asked is about the language spoken at home. It reveals some things about the Australian populace that some people may find surprising. Hopefully, they also find it heartening. Across Australia, 20.4% of households reported speaking more than one language at home […]
, May 30, 2012
The NZ Herald reported on a research paper on migrant intergration and specifically multilingual signs, but as Lauren Gawne writes, their article didn't faithfully represent the research.
, May 29, 2012
Lauren Gawne writes: There were the obligatory white pants, smoke machines and flame throwers, as well as a rise in the popularity of female drummers, beards and women showing their knickers to the world. Eurovision 2012 had a very solid final and apart from Sweden’s breakout hit Euphoria (above, a genuinely good dance song with crab-walk […]
, May 26, 2012
Guest blogger and sign language expert Adam Schembri writes: It has been a confusing and disturbing week for the deaf community of Victoria, for Auslan students at TAFE, and for those of us who work for and with deaf community organisations. On Monday, Kangan Institute of TAFE announced that, following cutbacks to the TAFE sector, […]
, May 21, 2012
Lauren Gawne writes: We reported a week ago that the Monolingual Mindset cropped up again in Victoria, with the Department of Human Services declining to have a residents’ survey translated for the roughly 60% of intended surveyees for whom English is not a first language. It seems that there are similar attitudes towards languages other […]
, May 14, 2012
The Victorian Department of Human Services is seeking feedback from residents in public housing, but only if they can understand and fill out the English-only form. Aidan Wilson says the bureaucracy be doing more to help non-English speaking people by providing documents in their first language.