The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

By William H. Benson

The art of language


To learn a second language is difficult, if not impossible. At an early age, a child learns to think in his or her first language, and so his or her brain is set, hardwired for that first language.

After that, an adolescent or an adult cannot stop thinking in that first language and begin thinking in a second or third. Thus, most people fail to learn a second language, despite loads of willpower and intense study.

One guy said, after years of living in the Orient, “I am just not that good at learning languages.”

Daniel Everett, an American linguist, studied the Pirahã people of the A...

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