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Linguistics / Literature - 13.11.2023
Female authors address nature more often than men
Female authors address nature more often than men
Novels and poems often contain descriptions of plants or animals - sometimes more, sometimes less detailed. The extent to which flora and fauna feature in a literary work also depends on who wrote it and under what circumstances. For example, female authors tend to use more species names when they write.

Life Sciences - Linguistics / Literature - 26.09.2023
How concepts enter the brain and the role language plays in this process
Study on the connection between language and thinking by neuroscientists at Freie Universität Berlin published The influence of language on human thinking may be stronger than previously thought. This is the result of a new study by the language, cognition, and neuroscientist Friedemann Pulvermüller and his team from the Laboratory for Brain and Language Research at Freie Universität Berlin.

Linguistics / Literature - Life Sciences - 22.09.2023
Re-imagining our theories of language
Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences faculty members Ev Fedorenko, Ted Gibson, and Roger Levy believe they can answer a fundamental question: What is the purpose of language? Over a decade ago, the neuroscientist Ev Fedorenko asked 48 English speakers to complete tasks like reading sentences, recalling information, solving math problems, and listening to music.

Linguistics / Literature - 20.09.2023
Speech from the throne not simpler, but more difficult than in previous years
As in previous years, the speech from the throne was difficult once again: it contained many complicated and unfamiliar words, phrases, and constructions. More even, than the speeches from the throne of the previous four years, analysis by linguists Leo Lentz and Henk Pander Maat shows. Difficult speech from the throne To measure the level of difficulty of the speech from the throne, Lentz and Pander Maat used LiNT, a software tool developed by Utrecht University.

Linguistics / Literature - 27.07.2023
Fonts in transition
Throughout history, people have created different sign systems that correspond to the specifics of each language. The scripts have evolved in the process. Today, it is no longer possible to trace exactly how, since the development has usually been completed thousands of years ago. This is not the case with the West African Vai script, which did not come into being until the 1830s.

Linguistics / Literature - Computer Science - 08.06.2023
Researchers make language models scalable self-learners
The scientists used a natural language-based logical inference dataset to create smaller language models that outperformed much larger counterparts. Socrates once said: "It is not the size of a thing, but the quality that truly matters.

Linguistics / Literature - 04.05.2023
New database offers insight into consequences of language loss
New database offers insight into consequences of language loss
Grambank, a database of 2,467 languages that Yale linguist Claire Bowern helped create, helps researchers better understand the stakes when languages die off. Languages, like animal species, can go extinct. More than half of the world's approximately 7,000 signed and spoken languages are currently endangered.

Linguistics / Literature - 19.04.2023
Grambank shows the diversity of the world's languages
Grambank shows the diversity of the world’s languages
An international team has created a new database that documents patterns of grammatical variation in over 2400 of the world's languages What shapes the structure of languages? In a new study, an international team of researchers reports that grammatical structure is highly flexible across languages, shaped by common ancestry, constraints on cognition and usage, and language contact.

Linguistics / Literature - 03.03.2023
Large language models are biased. Can logic help save them?
MIT researchers trained logic-aware language models to reduce harmful stereotypes like gender and racial biases. Close Turns out, even language models "think" they're biased. When prompted in ChatGPT, the response was as follows: "Yes, language models can have biases, because the training data reflects the biases present in society from which that data was collected.

History / Archeology - Linguistics / Literature - 07.02.2023
Seven NWO Open Competition grants for UU Humanities scholars
Seven Utrecht University Humanities scholars have been awarded a grant by the Dutch Research Council (NWO) in the Open Competition SGW programme.

Pedagogy - Linguistics / Literature - 02.02.2023
Can Codified Gestures Help Language Learners Master Grammar Rules?
New study by a researcher in English didactics at Freie Universität Berlin shows that the use of hand gestures in English lessons can improve language retention A recent study from the Institute of English Language and Literature at Freie Universität Berlin has shown that using codified gestures as a teaching method may make it easier for children and adolescents to understand the grammar rules of a foreign language.

Innovation - Linguistics / Literature - 01.02.2023
The Neology Observatory at UPF launches Garbell, a digital tool that evaluates words that are not in the dictionary
Garbell, developed at the Neology Observatory at Pompeu Fabra University, within the framework of the Research Program of the Catalan Studies Institute, analyses words that are not in the standard dictionary but we use on a daily basis and tells us if they are more or less dictionarizable. This technological tool is the first in the world capable of making this assessment and could inspire similar tools for other languages.

Life Sciences - Linguistics / Literature - 21.11.2022
Genes and tongues are not always tied together
Genes and tongues are not always tied together
A global database helps explore the complex history of our genes and languages Does the history of our languages match the history of our genes? Charles Darwin thought yes, others said no. An interdisciplinary team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, the University of Zurich and Harvard University has put together GeLaTo, a global database linking linguistic and genetic data.

Linguistics / Literature - 03.11.2022
James Bond's ethnicity might change - but his accent probably won't
James Bond’s ethnicity might change - but his accent probably won’t

Linguistics / Literature - History / Archeology - 14.10.2022
New edition of the Mesopotamian classic Epic of Gilgamesh , by two IPOA lecturers
New edition of the Mesopotamian classic Epic of Gilgamesh , by two IPOA lecturers
Cultura Researchers Adelina Millet and Lluís Feliu, members of the Institute of Ancient Near East Studies (IPOA) of the University of Barcelona, have published a new edition of the Epic of Gilgamesh , the oldest literary epic and a classic in universal literature. Recent archaeological findings led to an update of the Epic, of which a first edition was published in Catalan in 2007.

Linguistics / Literature - 27.09.2022
The first Camilo José Cela manuscript, found
The first Camilo José Cela manuscript, found
Cultura The manuscript is the collection of poems Pisando la dudosa luz del día , which Camilo José Cela wrote from November 1 to 11, 1936, driven by the death of his girlfriend in tragic circumstances, victim of the bombings of the first major siege of Franco's troops in Madrid, to which he would later enlist.

Linguistics / Literature - 20.09.2022
Privacy gaps in Apple's data collection scheme revealed
Privacy gaps in Apple’s data collection scheme revealed
Researchers have demonstrated how Apple's use of a widely adopted data protection model could expose individuals to privacy attacks. By investigating Apple's use of the model, called local differential privacy (LDP), the researchers found that individuals' preferred emoji skin tone and political leanings could be inferred from the company's data.

Linguistics / Literature - History / Archeology - 24.06.2022
Scientists apply genetic methods to linguistics
Scientists apply genetic methods to linguistics
Scientists have produced a series of maps showing historical migration events, including the migration of mountain farmers native to Upper Valais who began to settle in German-speaking Switzerland in the 13th century, by applying methods from population genetics - but using linguistic data rather than genes.

Computer Science - Linguistics / Literature - 16.06.2022
Shedding light on linguistic diversity and its evolution
Shedding light on linguistic diversity and its evolution
Linguists and computer scientists collaborate to publish a large global Open Access lexical database Scholars from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany and the University of Auckland in New Zealand have created a new global repository of linguistic data. The project is designed to facilitate new insights into the evolution of words and sounds of the languages spoken across the world today.

Linguistics / Literature - 05.05.2022
Significant Decrease in Willingness to Donate Blood During Corona Pandemic
Significant Decrease in Willingness to Donate Blood During Corona Pandemic
Current calls for blood donations highlight the urgent need for blood. A new study at Universität Hamburg shows that the willingness to donate blood has dramatically decreased throughout the pandemic. The findings were published in the journal PLOS ONE. Even before the corona pandemic, there were repeated blood drives to meet urgent needs.
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