The World in Words

The World in Words podcast is about language — everything from bilingual education to the globalization of English to Icelandic insults. Hosted by The World's Patrick Cox. Subscribe to the podcast: RSS iTunes

Arts, Culture & Media

We love fairy tales — maybe we'd love them more if they were translated right

If you think you know the story of Snow White, or Hansel and Gretel or any of the Grimm brothers' fairy tales, think again. You probably know the cleaned-up, Disney versions. Author Adam Gidwitz returns to the blood and gore of the original stories in his retelling of them, while adding his own contemporary comments to help ease the tension for kids.

Arts, Culture & Media

English might not have become quite so popular, if a 17th-century poet had his way

Back in the 17th century, there was a move to create rules for English, based on Latin. The man behind it, poet John Dryden, thought that Shakespeare and others had turned English into an unruly mess. Dryden failed to establish an English "academy" to impose rules. And that failure may have helped make English the worldwide language it is today.