The strange thing with the Portuguese language is I don't remember why I wanted to learn it, yet I can speak it. The Spanish language and Italian literature and film have been major influences in my learning the Portuguese language and becoming interested in Portugal.
One missing digit One missing digit (not a finger!) almost kept me from going to India. En route to Chennai (Madras), I had a rude awakening at the Frankfurt airport: my passport number in my...
The film, Saved by Language about how Moris Albahari saved his life in World War II in Bosnia by using the Ladino language is now available to the public! You can rent it for $7 to watch online as many times as you like in a three-day period or you can buy the DVD for $25 and watch it whenever you want. You can order the DVD in either the PAL or NTSC format. Both the DVD and the online rental have subtitles in English, Ladino, Spanish, Portuguese and Bosnian/Serbo-Croatian.
Why I Hate Interpreting and Translating: multilinguals are not “natural” interpreters and translators
Just because somebody speaks two languages, he/she is not a natural, automatic interpreter and translator. A multilingual person can’t translate anything anybody wants, and can’t do simultaneous interpretation. I have received many requests and demands to translate and interpret on the spot from monolingual people and from multilinguals who aren’t used to being in situations where they have to interpret or translate. The idea that just because somebody is bilingual that they should make a career as a translator and an interpreter or do it for friends and family as favors is absolutely faulty.
f you fashion yourself Ernest Hemingway or Jorge Luis Borges’ incarnate and therefore exempt from learning an “inferior” tongue, let’s do a reality check. Where’s your Nobel Prize for Literature? Where are the bookshelves of tomes in your name worthy of mention?
For a limited time, until December 31, 2014, Saved by Language is on pre-sale. You can buy it here. The DVD comes with English, Ladino, Spanish and Bosnian subtitles. Choose from PAL and NTSC formats.
Alas, my TEDx talk on why we need to learn foreign languages and save endangered languages via music has been posted online.