Posts in Culture

How Nistor’s video killed the red star

Some 25 years ago, while still at university, I got my first break in the translation industry from my father’s company, who dubbed foreign TV programmes and films into Welsh and English for broadcast on S4C and the Beeb. Sadly, I don’t get to do much of that sort of work any more (although I’m

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Sweat the smalls stuff, Chinese-style

There’s someone washing her knickers in my bathroom. I’ve politely explained that our washing machine handles underwear just as well as it does the big stuff, but she has equally politely pointed out in response that this is “a question of hygiene”. Er, OK. At least she’s left the door open so that the children

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Wampanoag – back from the grave

A few weeks ago, I promised you a story about a language that rose from the dead. Well, our linguistic Lazarus is in fact the indigenous American tongue of Wampanoag, also known by such other names as Wôpanâak and “Massachusett language”. And yes, there’s a clue in the latter moniker – it was once the

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Zuckerberg’s Great Wall of cynicism?

So the BBC are being their usual snarky selves about Mark Zuckerberg’s latest Mandarin exploit – a Chinese New Year speech in, yes, Chinese. Rather than lauding Zuck’s obvious linguistic achievement, Auntie chooses to lead with the insinuation that the whole thing was little more than a publicity stunt to butter up a country in

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