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Speaking Topics:

[toggle link=”Spanish Language  ›”]I say Spanish, You say Spanglish

The United States’ growing Hispanic community is producing something totally unexpected: a new variety of Spanish. It’s not Spanglish – it’s American Spanish. In 2014, the first words of American Spanish will enter the dictionary of Spain’s Royal Academy.


A Look at Spanish Through Names

The name España originally meant “land of the rabbits” in Phoenician. Its modern form actually came from French. A look at the different names for Spanish speakers – from Hispanic, Hispano, Latino and Chicano, to Spaniard, Castilian, Spanish and hispanounidense – reveals the fascinating influences that forged the Spanish language through its history.


The United States’ Spanish Roots

Discussions about Hispanics in the U.S. inevitably turn to immigration. Yet few understand how deeply the influence of Hispanic culture runs in the United States. Many fundamental features of Americana, from the dollar sign and barbecues, to cowboy culture and mustangs, are of Spanish origin.[/toggle]

[toggle link=”Global Languages  ›”]How Major Languages Go Global

Believe it or not, French, Spanish, Arabic and even English all started out as obscure tongues spoken in remote places. Why do some languages spread and turn into global tongues? Politics, economics and even geography explain why languages grow and go global.


What’s the Best Language to Learn?

English? Spanish? Mandarin? French? It’s not just a question of numbers, or countries where they are spoken. The “best” language to learn depends on what you want to do with it. And some languages have surprising hidden qualities…[/toggle]

[toggle link=”French Language  ›”]French on the Rise

News of the death of French has been greatly exaggerated. In the last decade alone, the world got 20 million more French speakers. Though many see French as a language in decline, in fact, it is growing and spreading – notably in Africa. Though it only ranks 9th in number of speakers, French is still the world’s second international language.


The Other Side of the French Language

Mention of “French” brings to mind highbrow culture and language police. But the French language has another life as a popular tongue. In the 33 countries where it is an official language, French is evolving and adapting to new realities – from the suburbs of Paris to the backwoods of Louisiana, to classrooms in Quebec and libraries in Africa.[/toggle]

[toggle link=”France  ›”]What makes the French so French

With their fascination with grandeur and lofty ideas, their fondness for fine food, their hedonism, and supposed arrogance, the French fascinate as much as they mystify. Yet the French have created a society that uniquely suited to the values France has forged over its long history.


The Riddles of France

Whether is the Islamic veil, labor riots or globalization, France adapts to political, cultural and economic challenges its own way, maintaining its unique personality and values in the process. In many ways America’s “alter ego”, France really does represent something “else”.[/toggle]

[toggle link=”Writing  ›”]The Pitch of Your Life: Writing Non-fiction Book Proposals

A step-by-step process to writing a book proposal that literary agents and publishers will jump on.


Everything Writers Need to Know about Marketing

From pitching stories, to negotiating fees, how to get published in books, magazines and newspapers – and get paid for it.[/toggle]