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Episode 1552

Moon Palace

What happens in a classroom of refugee and immigrant youngsters learning English? Their fresh approach to language can result in remarkable poetry — some of which is collected in the anthology England: Poems from a School. Also, new language among...

Think Tank

Since the 1950’s, the term think tank has meant “a research institute.” But even earlier than that, going as far back as the 1880’s, think tank referred “a person’s mind.” Another slang term for one’s...

fyborg

fyborg  n.— «A few years ago I wrote a book defending the idea that humans have already evolved into functional cyborgs—fyborgs, if you will. The idea was that through the development of culture, broadly understood, it was impossible to...

bouma shape

bouma shape  n.— «In visual terms, a word is distinguished by its characters’ relation to the white space surrounding it and the nature of its letter face (for instance, small thin strokes are common to handwriting, and thick short strokes...