Translators are proving their worth twice in this week’s World in Words podcast: in New York, they’re helping elderly Russian speakers fill out their census forms; in Louisiana and Mississippi they’re interpreting for Vietnamese-American fishermen whose livelihoods are threatened by the big oil spill. Also, which tastes better: Silverfin, Kentucky tuna or Asian carp? Plus, a conversation about counting: some languages are more numerate than others.
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In this week’s podcast, the U.S.Census Bureau is firing on all linguistic cylinders to ensure that non-English speakers are counted in this year’s census. Things don’t always go smoothly: in Vietnamese, the word “census” got translated into something closer to “investigation”. Also, how to pronounce that unpronounceable Icelandic volcano, Scrabble obsession beyond the English-speaking world, and five unique Japanese expressions.
Linguist Christopher J. Moore has made a career of searching out some of the world’s most "untranslatable" expressions â words from around the globe that defy an easy translation into English. Moore shares a few of his linguistic favorites from his new book In Other Words: A Language Lover’s Guide to the Most Intriguing Words Around the World.
Cross Talk — There’s no English translation for the Dutch word "Gezellig."Are there things that can never be understood, expressed or experienced outside their home culture?We’re wandering the unmarked maps of cultural translation!