How close can words get you to the truth and feel and force of life? That's the question poking at our ribs this hour of Radiolab. We wonder how it is that the right words can have the wrong meanings, and why sometimes the best translations lead us to an understanding that's way deeper than language. This episode, 8 stories that play out in the middle space between one reality and another — where poetry, insult comedy, 911 calls, and even our own bodies work to close the gap.
Years ago, Douglas Hofstadter read a poem. Just a few short lines, nothing special. But he's been translating it ever since.
How a brave Ethiopian reporter put himself at risk to ask a very serious question that was seriously misunderstood.
Euphemisms may water down language but do they hurt us? George Carlin thought so. Adam Gopnik isn't so sure.
Though Emilie Gossiaux was permanently blinded in a terrible accident, she has recently been able to see again — in a very different way.
Neuroscientist David Eagleman is building a vest to help deaf people hear, and it may be a whole new way of experiencing our world.
Nataly Kelly worked for a translation company that dropped her right in the middle of the most dramatic moment of a total stranger’s life.
Working as a sign language interpreter at a huge comedy festival, Kymme Van Cleef found herself with all eyes on her and a choice to make.