Celebrate Bilingualism & Languages at Edinburgh Fringe

The largest arts festival in the world is kicking off this weekend here in Edinburgh!

We’re excited that two of our directors at Bilingualism Matters have fantastic shows as part of the Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas that will challenge some commonly held notions about languages in modern society. Catch Antonella Sorace on 14th August ‘In Praise of Useless Languages‘ and Thomas Bak on 23rd August, ‘Is Monolingualism Making Us Ill?’.

For those of you looking for even more language treats, we’ve also been through the Fringe Programme in search of more shows that aim to celebrate languages and bilingualism, although be aware that inclusion doesn’t imply endorsement – so take a chance or check reviews!

Use the hashtag #bilingualfringe17 on Twitter to make more recommendations!

Lost in Translation: A Bilingual Journey (Aug 4-6, 8-13, 16-21, 23-28 at 16:00)
What happens in the mind of a bilingual person? Lose yourself in a joyful and intimate journey celebrating languages, cliches and pop culture. Interactive and thought-provoking: a performance like no other, pushing and questioning both theatrical and European frontiers.

The Wonderful World of Lapin (Aug 3-15, 19-20, 26-27 at 10:30)
Tania has just arrived from Paris for a very special occasion: The World’s Tastiest Carrot competition! In her leather trunk, she carries her very own garden, from which a whole world is revealed… A world of Tania’s animal friends, each of them desperate for a taste of her prize carrot… The Wonderful World of Lapin! Narrated in English with French sentences from the puppets, the show is a fun and heart-warming bilingual piece of theatre, with a big surprise ending. Accessible to all non-French speakers. Made with the support of Creative Scotland.

Making a Signbank Withdrawal (Aug 4 at 13:50)
Jordan Fenlon and Andy Carmichael (Heriot-Watt University) take a light-hearted look at the British Sign Language (BSL) Signbank – the online repository based on the BSL Corpus. Loosely inspired by the TV show Pointless, they’ll keep each other in check while taking the audience on a slightly naughty, irreverent but evidence-based and informative tour of the many vaults contained within the Signbank. Double entendres will abound, alongside puns, riddles and politically incorrect signs as the pair elucidate the linguistic wonders of the UK’s beautiful, iconic, indigenous language. This performance will be interpreted in BSL and English. [Read more…]

Twitter Q&A Session – 25 Aug

If you think monolingualism might be making you ill or you need to know about the hidden talents of minority languages, but can’t make along to our fantastic Edinburgh Fringe Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas shows this year, you can join our live Twitter chat on Friday 25th August 2017 from 4pm to 5pm (BST).

Professor Antonella Sorace and Dr Thomas Bak will be on hand to answer your questions. Use the hashtag #askbilingual to leave your questions.

Follow Bilingualism Matters on Twitter: @bilingmatters
Follow Thomas Bak on Twitter: @thbaketal

 

 

Bilingualism Matters at Edinburgh Fringe 2017

We are delighted that our Director, Professor Antonella Sorace, and our Deputy Director, Dr Thomas Bak, are both challenging Edinburgh Fringe audiences this August with surprising findings from research, as part of the 2017 Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas, organised by Beltane Public Engagement Network. [Read more…]

Our Annual Event 2017

By: Mariana Vega-Mendoza & Madeleine Long

On Friday 12 May 2017, Bilingualism Matters hosted its Annual Event at the University of Edinburgh’s Informatics Forum. The event brought together professionals and researchers from areas such as education, neuroscience, and policy as well as members of the public.

The programme kicked off with registration and networking followed by a wonderful schedule of short talks hosted by Àdhamh Ó Broin. The first talk was by the Centre Director, Prof Antonella Sorace, [Read more…]

Bilingualism Matters with ‘Little Linguists’ at Heathrow Airport

This Easter, we worked with Heathrow Airport to promote language learning for children, as part of their ‘Little Linguists’ scheme. Our Director, Professor Antonella Sorace, advised in the development of packs of fun flashcards in different languages, designed to spark an interest in language learning for the thousand of families passing through the airport over the Easter 2017 weekend. [Read more…]

Bilingualism Matters in Frankfurt

Prof Antonella Sorace is in Frankfurt today to give a talk entitled “Bilingualism: An Investment for Life”, at Goethe University Frankfurt.

Bilingualism Matters Network Dissemination Meeting in Trento, September 2016

 

Trento_Group

On the 13th and 14th of September 2016, researchers from Bilingualism Matters branches around the world came together in Trento, Italy, for the dissemination network meeting ‘Engaging in research on bilingualism’. [Read more…]

Interview on NPR – benefits of bilingual education

Bilingualism Matters Director Professor Antonella Sorace has been interviewed by US media organisation NPR (National Public Radio) for a piece on some of the potential brain benefits of bilingual education. The six areas discussed are: attention; empathy; reading; school performance and engagement; diversity and integration; and protection against cognitive decline and dementia.

Read all about it on the NPR website: 6 Potential Brain Benefits Of Bilingual Education.

New branch opening in Trondheim, Norway

Trondheim Logo

We are delighted to welcome a new branch in Trondheim, Norway, to the growing international network of Bilingualism Matters. The Trondheim branch is based at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and will be working in partnership with the established Norwegian branch in Tromsø, under the name of Flere språk til flere. [Read more…]

Thomas Bak on Public Radio International (PRI)

Earlier this month in the USA, the people of California voted to overturn the historic ban on bilingual education within their state.

In an interview with Public Radio International (PRI), Thomas Bak, Deputy Director of Bilingualism Matters in Edinburgh, shares research findings that may have helped changed attitudes to bilingualism and bilingual education. Find it at 28 to 33 minutes below.

Read about it on the PRI site.