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The Language Of Pandemic

Spanish flu mask photo
Wikimedia commons
Five women wearing surgical masks during the Spanish 'Flu outbreak in Brisbane, 1919.

The COVID19 pandemic has introduced some new words and phrases into our everyday vocabulary, like social distancing and contact tracing, but what’s old is new again.

In this edition of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Patricia O’Connor, author of "Woe is I" and other books about the English language. Most people living today have never experienced a global pandemic like this one, but the experiences of our ancestors have been passed on to us through our language. They talk about the language of this pandemic and pandemics past.

Guest:
Patricia O'Connor, author of "Woe is I," and blogger at grammarphobia.com

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