What is the origin of human conflict and how can we make peace? The Bible offers one answer in the myth of Babel: God ‘confused their tongues’ of humanity so that humans could no longer co-operate as a species and threaten the power of the divine. But is linguistic diversity really the source of human conflict. In this recording of a talk held at the BRLSI on September 12th 2022, Keith Kahn-Harris, author of ‘The Babel Message: A Love Letter to Language’, will argue that incomprehension can actually be a beautiful thing. He will show how something apparently trivial – the multilingual warning messages in Kinder Surprise Eggs – can allow us to appreciate the glorious, messy diversity of human language.
If you enjoyed this talk you might like to explore more videos on Literature & Humanities.