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The English Language | OED Consultant A.Prof Lisa Lim


English has cemented its place as the world's lingua franca, with 2 billion speakers. Will it remain a global language in the future?

In this episode, Jess is joined by Associate Professor Lisa Lim, a consultant to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) and a recent moderator at the Oxford World English Symposium.

Associate Professor Lim reveals the complexities behind the rise of the English language from the 1600s to the modern day and the language’s predicted future evolution, discusses the growth of ‘World Englishes’ outside of Western nations and explains how you can add new words to the OED.

  • How the English language became so widespread (01:14)
  • The “million dollar question” about its future (06:47)
  • Adding words to official English dictionaries (10:06)
  • Impacts of technology, from texting’s ‘lol’ to Hong Kong’s ‘add oil’ (18:28)
  • Changes in slang and the emergence of ‘cheugy’ (27:19)
  • Dr Lim’s research journey and research interests (30:13)

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Connect with our guests

Dr Lisa Lim is a consultant to the OED, an Associate Professor at Curtin University’s School of Education and writes a fornightly column titled “Language Matters” for the South China Morning Post's Sunday Post Magazine. 

Her research interests lie in New Englishes, multilingualism, issues of language shift, endangerment and revitalisation, and the sociolinguistics of globalisation.

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Behind the scenes

This episode came to fruition thanks to the combined efforts of:

Jessica Morrison, Host

Anita Shore, Executive Producer

Annabelle Fouchard, Producer
Alex Eftos, Assistant Producer

Daniel Jauk, Episode Researcher, Recordist and Editor

Amy Hosking, Social Media.

Curtin University supports academic freedom of speech. The views expressed in The Future Of podcast may not reflect those of Curtin University.

Music: OKAY by 13ounce Creative Commons — Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported — CC BY-SA 3.0 Music promoted by Audio Library.