Want to Protect Immigrants? Help Integrate Them into Our City.

Local Jobs, Language Skills, and a Path to Citizenship Are the Best Defense Against Anti-Immigrant Fervor

Is it any wonder that immigrant Los Angeles finds itself in the eye of Tropical Storm Don?

President Trump has stormed in with talk of Muslim travel bans, plans to build a wall along the Southern border, and ambitions to deport millions. And Los Angeles County has been ground zero for immigrant flows and immigration issues for decades. In the early 1980s, roughly a fourth of all immigrants coming into the United States came in through the county, prompting the anxiety and fears that in 1994 led to Proposition 187, a …

Noah Webster Would Have Loved Urban Dictionary

The Founding Father of American English Was a Radical Who Wanted Us to Write the Language the Way We Spoke It

In the late 18th century, as the recently independent states were working to define what America was—after fighting with England about what it wasn’t—grammar books were still teaching American children …

My American Languages

I First Learned English, Then Spanish, to Navigate My Identity in This Big Country

Sister Paula, our eighth grade teacher at Holy Cross Elementary School in South Los Angeles informed us one morning in 1944 that Fridays would be devoted to public speaking. Which …

No, You Don’t Have to Sign Up for Mandarin Lessons Just Yet

Even While China’s Economic Power Grows, English Will Remain the Global Go-To Language

A Russian, a Korean, and a Mexican walk into a bar. How do they communicate?

In English, if at all, even though it’s not anyone’s native language. You can swap …

When You Say Go Jump Off a Cliff, I Feel It

Benjamin K. Bergen Explains the Astonishing Workings of Language in Homo Sapiens

In Squaring Off, Zócalo invites authors into the public square to answer five questions about the essence of their books. For this round, we pose questions to UC San Diego …