141 episodes

Adventures in language with Helen Zaltzman. TheAllusionist.org

The Allusionist Helen Zaltzman

    • Arts

Adventures in language with Helen Zaltzman. TheAllusionist.org

    128. Bonus 2020

    128. Bonus 2020

    To round off the year, here are some choice cuts from the Allusionist vault of interesting things that guests said that there wasn’t room for in the original episodes. Brace yourself for a vivid name for dust bunnies, the scary side of glamour, another reason to be grateful for bears, and Schrödinger’s Fart.

    There’s more about this episode at theallusionist.org/bonus2020. The show will be back with new episodes in late January 2021.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Support the show by becoming a patron at patreon.com/allusionist.

    Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • Acorn TV. Allusionist listeners get a 30-day free trial at acorn.tv if you use the code allusionist.

    • 31 min
    127. A Festive Hit for 2020

    127. A Festive Hit for 2020

    The usual canon of Christmas songs may not really fit people's moods in this year 2020, when I'm not sure a lot of us are feeling all that holly jolly. So I drafted in singer and songwriter Jenny Owen Youngs and we wrote a festive song that is suitable for 2020.

    Content note: there are swears. Several of them.

    Jenny Owen Youngs makes music - find it at jennyowenyoungs.com - and podcasts - Buffering the Vampire Slayer and Veronica Mars Investigations. She’s @jennyowenyoungs on Twitter and Instagram.

    Martin Austwick provided music, backing vocals and linguistic analysis. Hear Martin’s own songs at palebirdmusic.com or on Spotify, and he’s @martinaustwick on Twitter and Instagram. He also composed the music for the kids’ science podcast Maddie’s Sound Explorers.

    There’s more about this episode at theallusionist.org/mistletoe.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Support the show by becoming a patron at patreon.com/allusionist. Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    Also, check out the previous festive Allusionist episodes, absolute bangers, one and all! We’ve got Winterval, a jolly romp through a portmanteau that sparked another war on the war on Christmas; How The Dickens Stole Christmas, about how Charles Dickens became a festive trend-setter; Dear Santa, about how a load of letters to Santa got delivered to a couple in Manhattan, who set out to answer them; and Xmas Man, about the many names for Santa/Father Christmas/St Nick, and deathy and meaty Victorian Christmas cards.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • Acorn TV. Allusionist listeners get a 30-day free trial at acorn.tv if you use the code allusionist.

    • 30 min
    126. Survival: Custodians of the Languages

    126. Survival: Custodians of the Languages

    In Australia, there were hundreds, perhaps thousands, of languages. Until English arrived.

    Rudi Bremer and Karina Lester talk about the destruction and revival of indigenous Australian languages.

    Content note: this episode refers to violence and genocide.

    Find more information about the topics in this episode at theallusionist.org/custodians, and listen to the other episodes in the Survival series: Second Home about Welsh in Patagonia; Oot in the Open, about the suppression and revival of Scots; and Bequest, about queer language in Māori; and the pair of Key episodes are about language extinction and preservation.

    The Allusionist music is by Martin Austwick. Hear Martin’s songs at palebirdmusic.com or on Spotify, and he’s @martinaustwick on Twitter and Instagram. He also composed the music for the new kids’ science podcast Maddie’s Sound Explorers.

    I make two other podcasts, Veronica Mars Investigations and Answer Me This, which are soothingly escapist.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • Acorn TV. Allusionist listeners get a 30-day free trial at acorn.tv if you use the code allusionist.

    • 29 min
    125. Swearalong Quiz

    125. Swearalong Quiz

    Fill your lungs and get ready to shout out some profane answers: it’s the Swearlusionist Swearalong Quiz! Every answer is a swear word. Swearing, as we know, is good for your health, plus helps vent stress, and you’ll learn many etymological facts along the way, so this is a very wholesome and educational quiz.

    CONTENT NOTE: this episode contains swears. Surprise!

    Find more information about the topics in this episode at theallusionist.org/swearalong.

    The Allusionist music is by Martin Austwick. Hear Martin’s songs at palebirdmusic.com or on Spotify, and he’s @martinaustwick on Twitter and Instagram. He also composed the music for the new kids’ science podcast Maddie’s Sound Explorers.

    I make two other podcasts, Veronica Mars Investigations and Answer Me This, which are soothingly escapist.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • Acorn TV. Allusionist listeners get a 30-day free trial at acorn.tv if you use the code allusionist.

    • 13 min
    124. Nightmare

    124. Nightmare

    This is the Alloooooooooosionist, in which we learn about the etymology of some scary words for Halloween, with the help of Paul Bae of The Black Tapes and The Big Loop podcasts, and Chelsey Weber-Smith of the podcast American Hysteria. Beware of demons! Satan! The bogeyman! Lemurs!

    Wait - lemurs??

    Find more information about these topics and guests at theallusionist.org/nightmare.

    The Allusionist music is by Martin Austwick. Hear Martin’s songs at palebirdmusic.com or on Spotify, and he’s @martinaustwick on Twitter and Instagram. He also composed the music for the new kids’ science podcast Maddie’s Sound Explorers.

    I make two other podcasts, Veronica Mars Investigations and Answer Me This, which are soothingly escapist.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • 19 min
    123. Celebrity

    123. Celebrity

    Celebrity used to mean a solemn occasion; X factor was algebraic; and fame was a huge terrifying Godzilla-like beast with many many tongues.

    Here to try define celebrity and fame are historian Greg Jenner of the podcast You’re Dead To Me, Lindsey Weber and Bobby Finger of Who? Weekly podcast, and writer, podcaster and videomaker Hank Green.

    Find more information about these topics and guests at theallusionist.org/celebrity.

    The Allusionist music is by Martin Austwick. Hear Martin’s songs at palebirdmusic.com or on Spotify, and he’s @martinaustwick on Twitter and Instagram. He also composed the music for the new kids’ science podcast Maddie’s Sound Explorers.

    I make two other podcasts, Veronica Mars Investigations and Answer Me This, which are soothingly escapist.

    The Allusionist's online home is theallusionist.org. Stay in touch at twitter.com/allusionistshow, facebook.com/allusionistshow and instagram.com/allusionistshow.

    This month, the Allusionist is sponsored by:

    • BetterHelp online licensed professional counselling. Get started today at betterhelp.com/allusionist and receive a 10% discount off your first month with the discount code ALLUSIONIST.

    • Bombas socks, thoughtfully engineered for comfort and durability - and for every pair of socks you buy, Bombas donates a pair to someone in need. Get twenty percent off your first purchase at Bombas.com/allusionist.

    • Molekule, air purification reinvented. For 10% off your first air purifier order, visit molekule.com and at checkout enter the code allusionist10.

    • Squarespace, your one-stop shop for creating and running a good-looking and well-working website. Go to squarespace.com/allusion for a free trial, and use the code ALLUSION to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

    • Progressive. See your insurance options and start a quote online at progressive.com.

    • 26 min

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