Language, Communication, Microdocs: Great Big Story

While traipsing across the internet last week, I stumbled upon an addictive little YouTube channel called Great Big Story. Forgive me, I might be late to this party, but if you’ve never heard of it, up until five months ago, Great Big Story was, as their About page on YouTube puts it, “a global media company devoted to cinematic storytelling.”

The micro-documentaries produced by Great Big Story are informative, intriguing, and just plain brilliant, and the channel has such a range of topics that you are bound to find something you love. Some of my favorites include “Enter the Deadliest Garden in the World,” “Why Sweden Loves Food in Tubes,” and “Why the World’s Mathematicians Are Hoarding Chalk.” I am currently considering the possibility of having my composition students make micro-documentaries for my class in the fall; this channel would be a wonderful resource for readings and examples of the genre.

Because we are inherently interested in language, communication, and culture here on this site, I wanted to provide a list of potential episodes that are interesting and relevant to our mission, interests, and target audiences. Happy watching!


“This Man Speaks 32 Languages”

“Saving the World’s Oldest Languages”

“Saving Languages from Extinction”

“This Turkish Language Isn’t Spoken, It’s Whistled”

“Everyone in This Village Can Speak Sign Language”

“How the Language From the Sims Was Created”

“Saving an Ancient Language Through Pop Music”

“The Chocolate Croissant Controversy”

“Talking Fast With a Record-Setting Speed Talker”

“This Man Can Pronounce Every Word in the Dictionary”

“Play on Words: Meet Nigeria’s Scrabble King”

“The Surprising Science Behind the Word ‘Pokémon’”

“Meet the Epic Voice Behind Movie Trailers”

“This Dialect Coach Can Transport You With Her Perfect Accents”

“Giving Artists With Disabilities a Space to Thrive”

“The Artist Paints What She Hears”

“A Photographer’s Mission to Capture a New Image of Africa”

“The Largest Handwritten Family Tree in the World”

“A Travel Writer Shares His Tips”

“The World’s Most Magnificent Libraries”

World Cinema Spotlight: 3 Idiots

Review: Alok Amatya

Rajkumari Hirani’s 3 Idiots (2009) is a Bollywood masala film in which the lead characters make their way through one of the prestigious colleges of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT). The film is unique in spotlighting mental health issues facing students at institutions of higher learning, even as it includes the usual trappings of buddy films, college humor, and romantic comedy. One of the major characters in the film (Raju) attempts suicide when he’s at the brink of being expelled from college, but eventually recovers. What makes the flick very relatable for a global audience is its candid discussion of the pressures weighing on college students. 3 Idiots did very well commercially in Southeast Asian markets, in addition to being a big hit in India. A very entertaining watch overall, the film stars notable Indian actors, such as Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, and R. Madhavan.


At the heart of the film is a struggle between the romantic individual spirit (embodied in the everyday college student) and the mammoth of the modern educational system. Students like Raju and Farhan are trapped in a system that wants them to mechanistically master the art of acing written examinations, until they can be freshly minted as graduates. As with many students around the world, these characters’ dreams of upward social mobility are pinned to obtaining the prestigious college degree. As you watch the film, you want the characters to make it out with their spirit intact, without being crushed by the system. I like the idea that global audiences can relate with the film’s characters based on their own experiences with a similar system, cutting across several cultural differences. Parts of the film are shot in the scenic areas of Ladakh (including Pangong Lake) that are now administered by India’s union government.


Hirani’s films are prone to cringeworthy moments of misogyny, xenophobia, and homophobia. In 3 Idiots, the butt of the main characters’ jokes is a Uganda-born student of Indian origin (Chatur), who is presented as a deserving target for pranks because of his bad Hindi. While several of the pranks on Chatur come across as bullying, the cringe elements all come together in a scene where his speech in front of a college assembly is sabotaged by the film’s protagonist (Rancho). Chatur is a Hindi learner who often goes beyond his vocabulary by reading from a script (or consulting a dictionary), cuing Rancho to replace the words in his speech with unsavory jokes about sexual molestation. The film is adapted from Chetan Bhagat’s novel Five Point Someone (2004), which is thoroughly disliked by literary critics for its over-the-top drama and pandering to the audience. Bhagat has written a slew of novels about IIT that have been adapted into films since the success of 3 Idiots.

Review: Jeff Howard

Perhaps I am biased because I love Aamir Khan’s work. I love Lagaan (2001), Taare Zameen Par (2007), Talaash (2012), and Dangal (2016), but watching Khan goof all over the set of 3 Idiots was such a joy for me. This film. Was. AWESOME! While Alok certainly has a point about the cringe elements of the film potentially crossing a line, it is also difficult not to appreciate the point being made through the character Chatur and his humiliation. The approval Chatur had received from university administrators and professors drives home the idea, though not seamlessly, that what the modern institution of higher learning seems to value is not free-thinking or trail-blazing, but instead regurgitated facts encased in jargon that create an effigy of knowledge rather than the real thing. In that way, the characterization of Chatur reminds me of T.S. Eliot’s line in Choruses from the Rock, “Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?”

If you like, you can think of 3 Idiots as being very much in the same vein as Dead Poets Society (1989), but with better singing and dancing and more laughs. (No disrespect to Robin Williams, of course.) Such a comparison does betray that cinematically, yes, indeed, we’ve trod this ground before, but nevertheless 3 Idiots remains a super fun/funny and sometimes emotional film despite its flaws, as well as an important one for people like Alok, me, and our colleagues who teach at a STEM school. 3 Idiots is on Amazon Prime, but luckily you can also find it on YouTube. A big thanks to the two students who recommended the film to me in the first place.

As a bonus for our fellow writing and communication teachers out there, I just want to share one of my favorite clips from 3 Idiots. Find a way to use this clip in any presentation that involves science communication, pitching your work to the public, jargon/disciplinary language, grant writing, and academic writing, etc. Trust me. It will make your point, and it will leave an impression.

Title: 3 Idiots

Director: Rajkumar Hirani

Released: 2009

Country: India

Language: Hindi and English

English Subtitles: Y

Closed Captioning: Y

Streaming/Available on: Amazon Prime and YouTube

Works Cited

“3 Idiots.” IMDb, n.d. Poster.

“3 Idiots | OFFICIAL trailer #1 US/indian (2009).” YouTube, uploaded by moviemaniacsDE, June 6, 2010,

Eliot, T.S. “Opening Stanza from Choruses of the Rock.” Westminster, n.d., Accessed 06 Mar. 2021.







The World Englishes Committee Welcomes Film Scholar Anu Thapa

The World Englishes Committee is pleased to announce that Anu Thapa, a film scholar and first-year Marion L. Brittain Fellow in the Writing and Communication Program, has recently joined our ranks. Anu’s specialties include Cinema and Media Studies, Digital Humanities, and Postcolonial Theory. She is currently spearheading the committee’s forthcoming initiatives related to global cinema (more information to come). We are excited to have her expertise and look forward to working with her .

As we have done in the past, we asked Anu a few questions (as we do with all of our new committee members) to help us get to know Anu better. We also asked her to fill out the Pivot questionnaire, and you can find her answers to that here, along with those of our other committee members.

Why did you want to be part of this committee?

I wholeheartedly subscribe to what Chimamanda Adichie calls the “danger of a single story.” (This TED talk is worth watching!) I would extend it further to the danger of a single way to tell/write/visualize stories. As a film scholar, I think about and work on the plurality of cinemas and cinema languages. World Englishes, which thinks about the heterogeneity of the English language, perfectly fits my academic and non-academic pursuits.

What do you like best about teaching?

I teach film, so we watch a lot of films in my courses. I like showing my students bizarre and foreign films. Getting their reactions during class discussions and seeing how their attempts to make sense of these films progresses by the end of the semester is a really humbling and rewarding experience. Equally humbling are moments when they detest a film you love.

If there weren’t a pandemic and you had a bit of free time, how would you choose to spend it?

Going to the movies!

What is the best movie you’ve seen in the last year?

Steve McQueen’s Lover’s Rock. Absolutely gorgeous and sensual. It is also the only film I have seen during the pandemic that hasn’t given me anxiety over watching an enclosed space packed with bodies touching, writhing, and breathing at each other. This pandemic has definitely changed how I watch and experience movies.

What is the book you want to read most but haven’t had a chance to read yet?

Tough to only name one, as it is an occupational hazard to collect books you want to read but haven’t had a chance to read. This meme sums me up in this context:

Translation and Literary Magazines

As a creative writer and literary magazine editor, I love reading brand-new work in brand-new, hot-off-the-press issues of my favorite literary magazines. They come in the mail, in orange bubble mailers, having never even been opened. The spine stiff with freshly congealed glue pops and cracks as I turn the pages. I hold it near my face and breathe in. Mmmm.

While there are innumerable contemporary literary magazines publishing online and in print, including several at Georgia Tech, such as EratoTerminusAtlanta Review, and of course RAMBLE, I would like to focus this post on literary magazines that are engaging with the important work of literary translation. As a junior in college, I was first introduced to the world of contemporary literary translation by a professor, Steven Stewart, who was translating works by Spanish-speaking writers such as Rafael Pérez Estrada, Ana María Shua, and Eduardo Milán. As a result, I, too, was compelled to engage with literary translation and even published a translation of a poem by Emilio de Marchi in my university’s student-run literary magazine during my senior year.

During my first semester teaching at Georgia Tech, I sat on a MARTA platform waiting for my train, reading a collection of poems by Wislawa Szymborska. As I was about to pass through the train doors and find my seat, a man approached me and, noticing the book in my hands, commented in a Polish accent how brilliant Szymborska was. I replied, smiling, that I thought so too, and then we each located our seats in different parts of the train car. This encounter encapsulates the kinds of intersections that literary translation promotes, not just between readers and texts, but among people of many nationalities, cultures, languages, and experiences. Literary translation allows poets and audiences to meet who otherwise might never have crossed paths. It removes linguistic barriers that impede access to new ideas and new situations. Without translation, the man on the train and I would likely never have spoken, brief though our encounter was, and though I would never have known it, I believe I would have been poorer as a result of that missed connection.

As a former member of the American Literary Translators Association (ALTA), I feel that literary translation plays an important role in making literature accessible to international and transnational audiences. Poetry@Tech, an organization at Georgia Tech whose “mission is to bring high-profile and celebrated poets, as well as new and exciting voices, to Atlanta, and to share the art of poetry with Georgia Tech students and the communities across Georgia,” is currently engaged in this kind of valuable cultural work. For instance, as part of the Atlanta Poetry and Translation Festival, in October 2020 Poetry@Tech held a reading involving a number of poets from Germany, and in March 2021 will host a group of poets from Belarus.

Here is a brief list of just a few contemporary magazines who are also using their publication platform as a means to promote translated works by writers all over the world, as well as their own descriptions of their mission as it relates to literary translation.


Alchemy is committed to publishing quality, contemporary translations of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction creative writing. By dedicating our journal to the publication of high quality translations by students and emerging translators, we aim to encourage a new generation of translators. We publish creative translations and adaptations, including homophonic, homolinguistic, and other poetic forms. It is our belief that translation can teach us new things about writing and about language itself. We look forward to publishing work that is fresh, engaging, and thought provoking. Alchemy is based in the University of California, San Diego’s Literature and Linguistics departments and is edited and published by UCSD students.”


“Winner of the 2015 London Book Fair’s International Literary Translation Initiative Award, Asymptote is the premier site for world literature in translation. We take our name from the dotted line on a graph that a mathematical function may tend toward, but never reach. Similarly, a translated text may never fully replicate the effect of the original; it is its own creative act.

“Our mission is simple: to unlock the literary treasures of the world. (Watch a video introduction of Asymptote here.) To date, our magazine has featured work from 121 countries and 103 languages, all never-before-published poetry, fiction, nonfiction, drama, and interviews by writers and translators such as J. M. Coetzee, Patrick Modiano, Herta Müller, Can Xue, Junot Díaz, Ismail Kadare, David Mitchell, Anne Carson, Haruki Murakami, Lydia Davis, Ann Goldstein, and Deborah Smith.”


 is invested in sharing the universal human experiences to be found in works of prose and poetry set within places unfamiliar to readers; thus, our expressed interest in international—or world—literature, and works in translation.  is versatile in its purpose and mission to readers and writers. The journal concerns literature in which character conflict, ultimately story, is tied to place. The retreats provide unique and stimulating place experience. In one interpretation, le cagibi is the place at which a writer’s inspiration is rendered into story, or shaped into poem.”


“Circumference is a journal whose mission is to support poetry in translation; primarily translations of new work from around the globe, new visions of classical poems, translations of foreign language poets of the past who have fallen under the radar of American readers, and pieces that illuminate translation as a vibrant, necessary interaction. Through our website we facilitate conversations about international literature and translation in real-time, and promote dialogues that enliven our sense of what it means to bring new work into English.”


“An Online Journal of Translation, is a forum for poetry and translation. We hope to stimulate the under-explored arts of reading in other tongues and translating for an English audience. We aim both for new knowledge of world writers and for the creation of beautiful new works. Ezra is interested in any form, style, tone or era.

“We dedicate ourselves to the spirited interplay of cultures, and to the presence of the laurel itself in the act of literary translation: to the transformative, promethean, synthesizing essence of poetry.

“Ezra hopes to have more writers live and work in the space between cultural and linguistic constructs — just as poetry lives in betweenness.

“Beyond the love of languages — their sounds and separate geniuses — we are alert to the occasional translation that is (as Márquez said of Rabassa) better than the original. We dedicate ourselves to the successes — mysterious and many — that await literary translators.”


Metamorphoses is the journal of the Five College Faculty Seminar on Literary Translation. Published in the spring and fall, the journal provides a forum for literary translation out of, and into, all languages, and for papers on the theory and practice of literary translation.”

To find other magazines looking for and publishing literary work in translation, click here.

“Apologies for Cross-posting”: CFPs in the Digital Humanities


After combing through the DHSI listserv, that steady pipeline of hidden gems for academic projects, we found more than a few CFPs and announcements, several of which overlap with the topics and issues with which the editors of this website are interested in. Here are a smattering of these opportunities:

CFP for “Right to Left” at DHSI 2021—Online Edition

We are soliciting papers related to digital work in any living or historical RTL language such as Arabic, Azeri, Hebrew, Kurdish, Ottoman, Persian, Syriac or Urdu. Possible topics might include RTL languages and cultures seen from any of these angles:

  • bidi/multidirectionality
  • digital culture in RTL societies
  • open social scholarship
  • digital pedagogy
  • integrating RTL into global digital humanities
  • platforms and user experience
  • transliteration practices (e.g., Arabizi, P/Finglish)
  • internationalization/localization (e.g., interface translation)
  • adapting and building digital resources and methods (e.g., RTL XML)

Please send 200-word abstracts and participant bios to by February 25, 2021.
Accepted participants will prepare a pre-recorded short talk (10 mins) which will be posted in advance of the conference on a password-protected site available to conference registrants. During the conference there will be a two-hour live discussion of accepted papers.

A publication of papers from this year’s conference is anticipated along with previous two years in the open access journal Interdisciplinary Digital Engagement in Arts & Humanities (IDEAH).

CFP: Representation and Recovery–ADE Virtual Annual Conference
Well-funded digital archives have energized the field of documentary and scholarly editing, yet the recovery of content by women, Indigenous people, Black people, People of Color, and other underrepresented groups has suffered setbacks since the 1990s. For editing and other communities, the recovery of marginalized voices was long hampered by funding sources that focused interest on well-known and canonical historical figures. And even though the interests of funding organizations have shifted in the context of changing technologies and constituencies, the field has been slow to respond. Increasingly, however, new funding sources and technologies are enabling documentary editors, textual scholars, historians and other interdisciplinary scholars, educators, genealogists, family historians, students, librarians, archivists, church historians and other community groups to bring marginalized voices and artifacts to light.

The ADE Program Committee solicits presentations for panels and individual papers on recovery broadly, including efforts of small-scale projects; rare or marginal texts; texts and artifacts produced by women, Indigenous people, Black people, People of Color and other marginalized groups; texts that dislodge the single author model; the exploration of the ways in which scholarly editions, archives, and pedagogical recovery projects can avoid reproducing colonization/marginalization; the ways in which editors can offer context to historically famous figures to avoid placing them on a pedestal; and the role that new technologies, social media environments, editorial institutes, and community groups play in advancing these objectives. We welcome projects and individuals in all disciplines and at any stage of their career, as well as those who engage in public history and advancing knowledge beyond the academy.

Please submit inquiries and 300-word abstracts and brief bio(s) to Noelle Baker ( by 1 March 2021.

Potential topics include but are not limited to:

  • Initiatives to support peer review of and recovery work by marginalized figures
  • Editing and minimal computing in the Global South
  • Community recovery work
  • Teaching with recovered materials in K-12 classrooms
  • Digital technologies, accessibility, and the broadening/democratizing of knowledge
  • Recovering hidden voices and stories through their interactions with canonical figures
  • Editors’ responsibility to engage with emerging scholarship adjacent to their figures
  • Decolonializing archives, records, and editions (including but not restricted to metadata, bibliographies, and indexing) for the discoverability of marginalized and underrepresented groups
  • Challenges and strategies in placing historic (and imperfect) figures in context in 2021
  • Editorial institutes and expansive definition(s) of what constitutes digital recovery
  • Editorial treatment of understudied documents for which encoding is scholarship
  • Pedagogical experiments with micro editions and recovery
  • Teaching an imperfect past in 2021
  • Decolonialized approaches to recovery
  • Social editions, new platforms, and more democratic models of recovery
  • Creating discoverability for underrepresented individuals via county/state sheriffs’ records, professional licensing records, store ledgers, and other related records

NEH is Hiring! Program Specialist in the Division of Preservation and Access:

Full Information:

Open & closing dates: 01/19/2021 to 02/09/2021

The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent grant-making agency of the government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. The Division of Preservation and Access provides leadership and support for a sustained national effort to preserve and increase the availability of resources important for research, education, and public programming in the humanities.

The Program Specialist assists with administrative activities that support managers and program officers in the Division of Preservation and Access. The duties of this position are focused on supporting the review of complex grant applications administered by the Division, including making analytical decisions and recommendations on actions as may be appropriate as to assure accurate administrative control for compliance with applicable Division and Endowment regulations, procedures, and policies as well as:

  • Participates in grant program management through monitoring workflows, distributing materials for outreach, and review of proposals.
  • Provides guidance to applicants on inquiries regarding specific grant programs within the division.
  • Participates in the administration of application review by conducting statistical analyses of application and awards.
  • Writing humanities content for public audiences.


Professional experience working in a cultural heritage organization, university, or with grants

A Bachelor’s degree in a discipline of the humanities is required (a Master’s degree in the humanities, library & information science, museums studies, or a related field is preferred).

Conditions of Employment: U.S. Citizen; Relevant experience and/or education; Favorable background investigation; Males born after 12/31/1959 must be registered with the Selective Service

Grade: GS 11

Salary: $72,750 to $94,581 per year

Appointment type: Permanent

Work schedule: Full-Time

Call for Reviews: Information & Culture
James Hodges will soon be the new Senior Book Reviews Editor for Information & Culture journal ( He writes:

“I’m especially interested in bringing a more global and multicultural range of subject matter to our review pages. This means that while our general focus on the social and cultural influence of information remains unchanged, I am eager to seek out books and reviewers with origins and expertise in areas beyond the Anglosphere and Global North.

Do you have a book coming out that fits with the editorial mission of Information & Culture?
Is there a new or upcoming book that you would like to review?

If so, please contact to let us know!

We are also currently seeking reviewers for the following titles:

A History of Data Visualization and Graphic Communication
Michael Friendly, Howard Wainer; June 2021

Burning the Books: A History of the Deliberate Destruction of Knowledge
Richard Ovenden; November 2020

Please get in touch via if you are interested in reviewing these or other titles.

More information: Information & Culture is an academic journal printed three times a year by the University of Texas Press. It publishes original, high-quality, peer reviewed articles examining the social and cultural influences and impact of information and its associated technologies, broadly construed, on all areas of human endeavor. In keeping with the spirit of information studies, we seek papers emphasizing a human-centered focus that address the role of and reciprocal relationship of information and culture, regardless of time and place.

The journal welcomes submissions from an array of relevant theoretical and methodological approaches, including but not limited to historical, sociological, psychological, political and educational research that address the interaction of information and culture.”

Classroom Icebreakers: What Saturday Night Live Has Taught Us about Communication

Teachers frequently use interesting, exciting, and hilarious media clips as icebreakers to grab students’ attention and introduce them to classroom topics. Over the years, Saturday Night Live has produced a number of sketches connected to the subject of communication. Sometimes the sketches speak explicitly about specific communication strategies or genres, while at other times they provide a fun example of what not to do if you want to be an effective communicator. This post contains links to just a few SNL sketches that Writing and Communication instructors can use as icebreakers in their courses.

Graphic Design

“Papyrus”: In this intense parody trailer, Ryan Gosling plays a man haunted by one designer’s font choice when he created the logo for James Cameron’s 2009 film Avatar. 


“Plagiarism”: A high school teacher (played by Chris Parnell) confronts his cheating students (played by Seth Meyers, Ashton Kutcher, Rachel Dratch, and Amy Poehler), teaching them about the pitfalls of plagiarizing.

Instructional Technology

“PowerPoint”: Mikey Day and Idris Elba team up as Microsoft tech experts running a PowerPoint workshop. Hilarity and anxiety ensue as some of the people in the workshop struggle to create a set of simple slides. A few of these same cast members/characters later come together for another hysterical sketch called “Zoom Call,” in which they parody many of the behaviors that have become commonplace–and even cliché–in teleconferencing.

Bonus clip: “Kate McKinnon Improvises a PowerPoint Presentation”: Though not technically a Saturday Night Live clip, SNL cast member Kate McKinnon rises to the challenge of doing a business presentation, using slides she has never seen before.


“Dorm Room Posters”: One college student (Pete Davidson) is struggling to write his history paper. The posters in his dorm room come to life in order to give him advice on how to write an academic paper, but only most of them are helpful.


“The War in Words: William and Lydia”: Mikey Day and Phoebe Waller-Bridge parody the documentary genre as communication breaks down in this amusing exchange of letters between a WWII soldier and his wife. Day also does a similar sketch as a WWI soldier writing to his wife (played by Claire Foy) with similar communication mishaps.

Saturday Night Live main stage, recreated for exhibit at Museum of Broadcast Communications. Creator: Steven Dahlman, 05 Jan. 2018, (no changes). License link.

Social Media

“Barbie Instagram”: Three Mattel interns (Pete Davidson, Donald Glover, and Heidi Gardner) are tasked with brainstorming captions for Instagram posts featuring Barbie. SNL would later do a similar sketch called “Ken Instagram” featuring Rachel Brosnahan.

“Why’d You Post That?”: Kevin Hart stars in new game show in which he yells at contestants for their inept use of social media.

Public Speaking

“Down by the River”: A classic sketch involving Chris Farley as motivational speaker Matt Foley, whose awkward presentation convinces two teenagers to change their lives.


Substitute Teacher”: A substitute teacher (played by Lin-Manuel Miranda) relies on Hollywood tropes and pop culture to try to inspire a skeptical AP English class to love literature. Years earlier, in 1996, the SNL cast had done a “Substitute Teacher” sketch called “Suel Forrester: Substitute Teacher,” in which nearly everyone in a classroom of high school students (Will Ferrell, Cheri Oteri, Molly Shannon, and others) have no idea what their substitute teacher (played by Chris Kattan) is trying to tell them. Teachers, please, slow down and annunciate.


“Poetry Class with Drake”: Over the years, SNL has done many sketches involving teachers and students. “Poetry Class” is actually a sequence of sketches involving a poet named Ms. Meadows (played by Vanessa Bayer), who tries to teach high school students about why poetry is cool. Cameron Diaz and Miley Cyrus also appear in “Poetry Class” sketches.

Oral Communication

Intonation is a powerful indicator of meaning. In this sketch, “Sarcasm 101,” Matthew Perry essentially teaches an entire class about using tone to to say one thing and mean another.

Upcoming Online Events about Diversity

taken from the University of Victoria listserv:

Image taken from the Center for Digital Humanities, Accessed Dec. 8, 2020.

Do you wish you could do large-scale text analysis on the languages you study? Is the lack of good linguistic data and tools a barrier to your research?

The Center for Digital Humanities at Princeton is calling for applications for New Languages for NLP: Building Linguistic Diversity in the Digital Humanities, a 3-part workshop series to be held between May 2021 and August 2022. Deadline for applications is January 10, 2021.

We are seeking a cohort of scholars working with diverse languages that currently lack NLP resources. No technical experience is necessary to participate. Institute participants will learn how to annotate linguistic data and train statistical language models using cutting-edge NLP tools and will advance their own research projects.

For more information and to apply, see our project website:

This Institute workshops is funded by a National Endowment for Humanities Institutes for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities grant, and is a collaboration between the Princeton CDH, Haverford College, the Library of Congress Labs, and DARIAH.

Please feel free to contact the project directors with questions:

Natalia Ermolaev (

Andrew Janco (

taken from

Image taken from Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Georgia Tech, Accessed Dec. 8, 2020.

Join us virtually for the 10th annual
Martin Luther King Jr. Lecture 
featuring Nikole Hannah-Jones
January 14 at 3:30 p.m.

Hannah-Jones is the creator of the New York Times Magazine’s “The 1619 Project,” about the history and lasting legacy of American slavery, for which her powerful introductory essay was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for commentary. She has also won a Peabody Award, two George Polk Awards, and is a three-time winner of the National Magazine Awards.

The commemoration of the life and work of Martin Luther King Jr. at the Georgia Institute of Technology encompasses an ambitious slate of events organized by faculty, staff, and students. Our 2021 MLK celebrations will include various virtual and in-person educational programs and service opportunities to encourage active participation from the campus and nearby community.

As an academic institution dedicated to advancing a culture of inclusive excellence, we reflect upon the contributions of Martin Luther King Jr. during our annual celebration. We recognize the ongoing global struggle for social justice, social courage, and the need for sustainable social change. We are pleased to honor King’s legacy as we set the agenda for the next civil rights movement.

To view the listing of 2021 MLK celebration events, visit here.


Video Lectures on Language and Linguistics, part 2


One of the reasons this website exists is to provide resources to visitors who want to know more about the topics with which this site concerns itself. One of these major topics is linguistics. The purpose of this post is to provide just a few links to video lectures (or interviews) on linguistics by prolific scholars and thinkers so that our audiences can educate themselves about some of the big names in the field of linguistics and their ideas about language, culture, cognition, and more. This is, of course, a companion piece to a previous blog post that provided links to lectures on language and linguistics, but this post connects to lectures by women and people of color (rather than white males) in order to give a more complete representation of the racial, ethnic, sexual, and intellectual diversity of the field.

Lisa Green

“African American English through the Years”

Lýdia Machová

“The Secrets of Learning a New Language”

Mary Haas

Oral History Interview

Keren Rice and Ken Hale

“Fieldwork and Community: Aspects of Variation and Change”

Patricia Kuhl

“The Linguistic Genius of Babies”

Ahmar Mahboob

“Linguistics for Development: What Linguistics do We Need in the Developing World and Why?”

Barbara H. Partee

Semantics (Whatmough Lecture 2014)

Kate Burridge


Anne Charity Hudley

“Linguistics and Community Engagement: Keeping It Real”

John McWhorter

“4 Reasons to Learn a New Language”

“Words on the Move: The Spectator Sport of How and Why Language Changes”

Deborah Tannen

“The Language of Friendship: The Role of Talk in an Understudied Relationship”

“A Linguist’s Intellectual Journey”

Lera Boroditsky

“How Language Shapes the Way We Think”

Video Lectures on Language and Linguistics, Part 1


One of the reasons this website exists is to provide resources to visitors who want to know more about the topics this site concerns itself with. One of these major topics is linguistics. The purpose of this post is to provide just a few links to video lectures (or interviews) on linguistics by prolific scholars so that our audiences can either educate themselves or learn more about some of the big names in the field of linguistics and their ideas about language, culture, cognition, and more. We understand that these pioneering voices in 20th- and 21st-century linguistics are all somewhat on the older side, white, and male, which is why we will soon be doing a similarly structured companion piece to this post that provides links to lectures delivered by nonwhite and nonmale voices in the field.

Noam Chomsky

The Concept of Language

Fundamental Issues in Linguistics

The Structure of Language

Universal Linguistics: Origins of Language

Language and Knowledge


Steven Pinker

Linguistics as a Window to Understanding the Brain

Linguistics, Style and Writing in the 21st Century

Human nature and the Blank Slate

What Our Language Habits Reveal

Language, Reason, and the Future of Violence

On Good Writing (with Ian McEwan)

On the Enlightenment Today (with Stephen Fry)


David Crystal

On Anniversaries

The Influence of the King James Bible on the English Language

On Language, Linguistics, and Literature

What’s New in the English Language

The Future of Englishes

Texts and Tweets: Myths and Realities


William Labov

The Changing Dialects of American English

The Relation of Social to Structural Factors in the Explanation of Linguistic Change



Crystal, David. 28 July 2017. “David Crystal.” Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia, 18 November 2020,

Pinker, Stephen. 2011. “Stephen Pinker.” Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia, 18 November 2020, .

Starita, Augusto. 12 March 2015. “Noam Chomsky.” Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia, 18 November 2020,

“William Labov.” 05 October 2015. Linguistic Society of America, Linguistic Society of America, 18 November 2020,

The Communication Center’s Last Fall Conversation Hour: November 13, 2020

The semester’s end is approaching, and with that approach come Thanksgiving, final exams, and the Naugle Communication Center’s last English Conversation Hour of the semester. The event is an opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students at Georgia Tech who are learning English as a second or other language to come together in a Microsoft Teams meeting to socialize and practice their conversational English. The WCP’s World Englishes Committee and Dr. Rob Griffin, the Center’s English language learning specialist, are partnering with the Communication Center to host this event.