John McWhorter

Saint Maya
Angelou's flawed books helped relieve black writers of the burden of representing their race
May 28, 2014

There isn't much art in her books, but she helped pave the way for black writers who can enjoy the luxury of being merely individuals rather than representatives of their race.

That Viral Story About the Racist Ice Cream Song Is Wrong
May 16, 2014

A writer for NPR makes a bold argument—but without the necessary facts.

We've Been Told that Different Languages Create Different Worldviews. They Don't.
April 27, 2014

It’s not language that makes people different, but the culture associated with the language.

Gawker is Trying to Use 'Adult' Language. Good Luck to Them.
April 07, 2014

Why try to avoid lingo? What's slang today is accepted usage tomorrow. 

Let's Stop Pretending That French Is an Important Language
February 02, 2014

The idea that American-born children need to learn French has become more reflex than action, like classical music played at the wedding of people who live to modern pop.

A Gender-Neutral Pronoun Won't Work in English. We're Stuck With "She" and "He."
January 24, 2014

It would have saved Grantland some headaches, but it's hopeless.

Internet-Speak is Improving English Because Empathy
The real significance of the new "because"
January 09, 2014

The real significance of the new "because."

This American Dictionary Is Full of Words You've Never Heard Before
An ambitious attempt to document the differences in regional English
December 18, 2013

There are way more words for soft drinks than just "pop" and "soda."

The Foolish, Malicious War on Apostrophe's
September 30, 2013

In the debate over whether the apostrophe should be eliminated, there may appear to be connection with real life. However, there isn’t—it can only be classified as a kind of journalistic kabuki.

Miley's Twerking Wasn't Racist
It's not right to call her VMA performance minstrelsy
August 27, 2013

Many of the people clutching their pearls over Miley Cyrus’s gluteal gyrations at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday don’t want the America they claim to want.

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