Sociolinguist, Yiddish scholar and advocate for endangered languages Joshua (Shikl) Fishman died March 1 in New York.
Philologos points out that not every rabbi is a ‘rabbinical scholar’ and not every rabbi’s pupil is a smart man. Did a Forward article muddy the Talmudic waters?
Should we bend over backward to avoid using male-centric language? No, argues Philologos, because political correctness can sometimes get in the way of communicating properly.
As the Scottish independence vote looms, Philologos investigates the origins of Scots Yiddish. Is it a dialect, a language all its own — or something else entirely?
The New York Times isn’t the only paper that can have a little trouble with Hebrew: Philologos takes issue with an article that recently appeared in the Forward.
Why doesn’t any Jewish language have a word for ‘fun’? It’s not because the tribe doesn’t know how to amuse itself, Philologos explains.
Is it possible that Yiddish comes from Sorbian, a little-known Slavic language that is still spoken by a few thousand people in Germany? Philologos says it very well might have.
The origins of Yiddish are subject to serious scholarly dispute. It’s so serious, in fact, that Philologos dedicates a second column to deciphering its beginnings.
The origin of Yiddish was long thought to be an open-and-shut case for Jewish historians. But serious linguistic and genetic challenges have made it a much tougher call.
Novelist Amos Oz has referred to Jewish settlers in the West Bank as ‘neo-Nazis.’ Philologos explains why the phrasing is wrong — both morally and linguistically.