He raises the key point that the United States Census Bureau only asks households what language they speak at home rather than a more telling question like, “Can you have a conversation in a language besides your mother tongue?” Until that is the case, Erard argues that “claims about American monolingualism will almost certainly be overstated.”
Who is predisposed to learn new languages? Michael Erard’s book, Babel No More: The Search for the World’s Most Extraordinary Language Learners, will answer that question.
The book came about after Erard wrote an article for a pop science magazine that aimed to explain the science behind hyperpolyglots (people who can speak six or more languages). He realized how much more could be researched and written about the fascinating topic of language superlearners.
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