One of the problems with biographies and comedy books is that they don’t have a lot of new vocabulary for me. I have a list that I still need to post from The World Without Us, but I don’t have the book with me here in Amsterdam, so that list will have to wait.
This week, I’m reading The Lost and Forgotten Languages of Shanghai, a terrific novel by Ruiyan Xu. The main character, Ji Ling, was injured in an explosion and has “forgotten” how to speak Chinese. He is only able to communicate using English, which he learned as a child living in Virginia. It’s completely engrossing so far – check back for a review soon.
1. Bilingual aphasia – Aphasia is partial or total loss of the ability to articulate ideas or comprehend spoken or written language, resulting from damage to the brain caused by injury or disease. In bilingual aphasia, the patient loses the ability to communicate in one of the languages they use.
“But the severity of the damage, coupled with the temporary loss of one language and preservation of the other, leads me to believe that Mr. Li would be well served by someone who specializes in bilingual aphasia.”
2. Operculum – the most posterior portion of the inferior frontal gyrus of the frontal lobe in the brain.
“Left frontal lobe. Operculum. An unlikely open head injury.”
3. Lexical – concerning the vocabulary, words or morphemes of a language; concerning lexicography or a lexicon or dictionary.
“…the damage was excessive, almost unthinkable in the way it zeroed in on the areas responsible for lexical retrieval, fluency, syntactical processing.”
What new words did YOU learn this week?