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

Health & Medicine

Why a hospital is taking farm workers out of the field and training them as medical interpreters

When you don't speak English, going to the hospital in the US, can be a frightening experience. This was the case for many Mexican farm workers living and working in the Salinas Valley who neither spoke English nor Spanish. Natividad Hospital in Salinas found that four of the most popular languages spoken in the hospital were Native Mexican languages. So, the hospital piloted a program to train indigenous language speakers to become medical interpreters.

Arts, Culture & Media

Meet the last native speakers of Hawaiian

Hawaiian is often offered up as a language revitalization success story, a model for other endangered languages to follow. But language revitalization isn’t so simple. While activists are reviving the Hawaiian language, opening up pre-schools, teaching thousands of second language learners, there still is a small group of native speakers who have never lost the language, a group of native Hawaiians from the island of Niihau.