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Zack Simon
Zack is a professional expat and language-lover, currently living in Paris. He was formerly a communications staffer for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the Democratic Policy and Communications Center. Before that, he worked as a legislative assistant in the House of Representatives. He currently runs The "Linguisticlast," a blog dedicated to learning foreign language and all other things language-related.

You can find him on Twitter at @zackjsimon and @linguisticlast.

Entries by Zack Simon

In Transit. In Angkor Wat.

(0) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 2:56 PM

It was a quarter to four in the morning, and as the city groaned with damp, pink light at its far edge, my friend and I made our way drowsily to the taxi we had hired just five hours earlier. We moved past a steady trickle of tuk tuks and...

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You Down with Koh Phi Phi? Yeah You Know Me

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2014 | 4:24 PM

"You might want to come watch this," I said as I tended to a precarious balance along the upper edge of a long-tail boat. "This is going to be hilarious."

"Just fall in," said my professor, a blonde-haired Englishwoman whose speech sagged with a heavy north-English accent.

"What do I...

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Why I Won't Let My Children Learn French, Mandarin, German, Spanish or English

(1) Comments | Posted May 2, 2014 | 4:24 PM

If you haven't read Liam Mullone's piece in The Spectator entitled "Why I won't let my children learn French," you should. His writing is as crisp as an autumn leaf and evinces an excellent grasp of history. It's also one of the most dangerously myopic articles written about a...

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Can You Learn a Language While Living In Another Country?

(0) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 12:47 AM

The topic of this week's post was inspired by a question a friend of mine posed to me. After reading my blog, she asked how easy it is to learn a language while living in a country where that language isn't spoken. She noted that while learning French, I have...

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Can Learning a New Language Boost Your Creativity?

(1) Comments | Posted March 20, 2014 | 12:00 PM

I became fascinated with the question of what relationship exists, if any, between foreign language ability and creativity after reading Earnest Hemmingway's The Sun Also Rises this past summer. The novel takes its readers on a trilingual adventure from the cafés of Paris to the bullfighting rings of Pamplona. Hemmingway...

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Ronan Farrow Does Not Speak for My Generation

(10) Comments | Posted March 10, 2014 | 4:42 PM

Like a growing number of Americans -- especially younger Americans -- I don't own a TV, and when I wanted to catch a glimpse of Ronan Farrow's new show on MSNBC, I had to find clips from the show on the network's website. Once there, I was greeted...

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Can Your Phone Teach You a New Language?

(1) Comments | Posted February 20, 2014 | 4:12 PM

This post first appeared on The Linguisticlast, a blog dedicated to language learning and all things language. You can follow The Linguisticlast on Twitter at @linguisticlast. 

Spoiler alert: No, your phone cannot teach you a new language. Your ability to accomplish that depends entirely on you and your motivation,...

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In Defense of French

(2) Comments | Posted February 6, 2014 | 3:30 PM

The following piece is a rebuttal to John McWhorter's piece in The New Republic entitled, "Let's Stop Pretending That French is an Important Language."

"And when he told me French was a dead language, I knew it was true," recounted a friend of mine's mother a few months ago...

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What a Coca Cola Ad Taught Us About Language Policy in the U.S.

(14) Comments | Posted February 6, 2014 | 1:51 PM

Last Sunday night, millions of American crowded televisions sets to watch the Super Bowl, an annual sporting event so synonymous with American culture that Le Monde, a French newspaper, dubbed it "the other 4th of July." During the game, Coca Cola ran this minute-long spot featuring a...

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