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Articles about English words and language from around the world!

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Macquarie Dictionary celebrates 40 years of ‘unashamedly’ Australian English..
25 September 2021

Tory Shepherd - Tue 21 Sep 2021

It is 40 years since the first edition of the Macquarie Dictionary – the first complete and truly Australian publication of its type – was launched.

Publication of the Macquarie was a symbolic ditching of colonial English and cultural cringe. (The word “bludger” made it in from the start – but “bogan” had to wait until the second edition.)

Historian Manning Clark wrote in the introduction to that 1981 book that it was “evidence of the Australian contribution to the conversation of humanity”.

Last year’s word of the year was “doomscrolling”: the practice of continuing to read news feeds online or on social media, despite the fact that the news is predominantly negative and often upsetting. (“Karen” got an honourable mention).

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UK's Ofcom unveils new list of 'offensive' words..
25 September 2021

ByCraig Simpson - 22 September 2021 

“Gammon” and “Karen” have been added to a list of offensive words by Ofcom, as political labels are ranked by the watchdog for the first time

Terms including “Remoaner”, “Snowflake”, and “Boomer” have been included by the media regulator in a survey of swear words and offensive terms which could upset TV and radio audiences.

Audience attitudes to modern political labels like “Gammon”, used to insultingly describe predominantly middle-aged men on the political right, will be considered by Ofcom when assessing complaints in future.

Broadcasters will also be asked to consider these words (along with racial, religious, and anatomical terms) when producing programmes, in order to avoid causing undue offence.

'Potentially offensive language'

Adam Baxter, the director of standards and audience protection, Ofcom, said: “People’s views on offensive language can change significantly over time.

“So to ensure we’re setting and enforcing our rules effectively, it’s essential we keep up to date with how viewers and listeners think and feel.”

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A new 'old' language appears in a primary school..
25 September 2021

By Sarah Cliss -  

Pupils at a Wisbech school have followed the motto "carpe diem" and have seized the day to become among the only children in the local area to be learning Latin.

Peckover Primary has introduced hour-long weekly lessons in Latin and classical civilisation for all pupils in Key Stage 2 - that is Years 3, 4, 5 and 6.

Louisa said the choice of Latin was made for numerous reasons not least because 60 per cent of the English language derives from Latin. Many Latin words are similar to their English ancestors and other languages in countries invaded by the Romans.

She said: "This means that English pupils as well as those for whom English is an additional language are able to make links between words in multiple languages. As they become accustomed to ever increasing complexity in their knowledge of Latin vocabulary and word roots, it will deepen their understanding of English and other languages they speak.

"Studies have shown that children who study Latin are likely to see improved outcomes in other subjects across the curriculum, for example they will gain a deeper understanding of mathematical and scientific vocabulary.  

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