Subscribe for more language and linguistics than you can handle.
My first channel trailer, complete with clips from a handful of my past videos. I'd show off upcoming videos, but, despite what Future English might lead you to believe, I haven't finished that time machine yet...
The full videos, with info and credits in description boxes:
Watch the birth and evolution of written language! My animation takes you through the world's major writing systems, from prehistoric cave days to the ancient world all the way to modern scripts.
Along the way, you'll see how writing developed, from Chinese characters to Sumerian cuneiform to Maya glyphs and beyond. History will bend and turn as challenging logographs evolve into alphabets, syllabaries, abugidas and more!
Go back even further if you want straightforward lessons in linguistics and logic.
I sometimes test out new languagey and linguisticky ideas (like the "top 9" lists or the Decipherment Club). That's just to get a feel for what you guys like. I will spin some off into separate series if you enjoy the videos enough. UPDATE: The Decipherment Club is now its own separate series, and actually spawned yet another separate series about the evolution of writing called Thoth's Pill.
From hieroglyphs to Maya writing, learn to think like a decipherer. Come work alongside history's great geniuses (and some crackpots) as they try to crack the world's most mysterious ancient scripts. These tales of decipherment will take you from Egypt to Mesopotamia to Guatemala and beyond in an attempt to recover voices long vanished.
The first few videos give you a general understanding of decipherment. After arming yourself with those skills, you'll move on to see how history's great decipherments succeeded or failed, and work out why.
Major ideas about human language. If you have a few spare minutes, join me for a tour of one of these big questions:
What is language, and what are languages? What's the difference between a language and a dialect? How do you know if someone's using "bad grammar"? Where is language in the brain? Do people who speak different languages think differently? Is language an acquired skill or an innate ability? What is meaning? What is linguistics? What is logic? Is language based on rules or constraints? What is the relationship between language and reasoning? What do abstractions, analogies and errors have to do with how we learn to think, speak and build linguistic knowledge?
Some personal notes from the creator.
This was the first NativLang foray into language edutainment. In 2013 and early 2014, I poured my spare time into making each of these videos look, sound, educate and entertain a bit better than the last. It took a huge effort to get these just right. Eventually, this playlist spawned the more recent - and even more production-intensive - edupop series you can find on my channel page.
I was inspired by rising and shining edutainment stars on YouTube. They tackled the sciences, history, geography, philosophy, literature, gaming, even listing things in lists like this. Nothing fell beyond the quick wit and visual prowess of their explanatory reach. It's still my hunch that language lacks a comparable edupop niche on YouTube to stand alongside the likes of CrashCourse, CGP Grey, Veritasium, Extra Credits, TED Ed, VSauce, whatnameyou. It's also my hunch that whosoever buildeth that home shall earn great rewards. And worthy of the community that inevitably gathers around them. Such thoughts captivated and motivated me throughout the arduous labor of producing these videos with one hand clenching my mouse and the other laced around a cup of hot cocoa.
There are many things I don't like about this playlist, but the subject - language - is something I love. The issues tackled here are fascinating. Plus, this series beckoned me to reconnect with my creativity and work on my own art, music and animations.
The personal travel journal of a language lover. Travel shows often claim that people speak through their food, their architecture and their history. I don't disagree, but I think that the local people most often speak through their words! So come explore the quirks of a destination through the words and sounds of its languages.
Each video is a very short "language and travel" vignette, focusing on a single destination. See how a simple feature of a local language can open up a window to the history and culture of places near and far!