Pilgrim in the Palace of Words: A Journey Through the 6,000 Languages of Earth

Pilgrim in the Palace of Words: A Journey Through the 6,000 Languages of Earth

by Glenn Dixon


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Pilgrim in the Palace of Words is about language, about the words that splash and chatter across our tongues. Some six thousand languages are still spoken on the planet, and author Glenn Dixon – an expert is socio-linguistics and a tireless adventurer – travels to the Earth’s four corners to explore the way these languages create and mould societies.

As one philosopher said, languages are Houses of Being. After doing graduate work in linguistics, Dixon wanted to visit these houses or "palaces" himself – to stroll along their sidewalks, knock on their doors, and peek in their windows. He wanted to see what they were hiding in their basements … even if it meant a little bit of trouble. In some cases, a whole lot of trouble! Join him on his adventure as, with wit and humour, he works toward a real understanding of how and why we communicate the way we do in the Global Village.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781554884339
Publisher: Dundurn Press
Publication date: 11/23/2009
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Glenn Dixon has published travel articles in major publications such as National Geographic , the New York Post , The Walrus , the Globe and Mail , and Psychology Today. An expert on language with an M.A. in socio-linguistics, he is currently a language consultant with the Calgary Board of Education. He lives in Calgary.

Table of Contents

Part 1 At the Gates of the Western World 9

1 Climbing the Tower of Babel 11

2 At the Gates of the Western World 30

3 And Empires, Too, Shall Splash Across These Pages 53

Part 2 Into the East 77

4 Genghis Khan Rides Again 79

5 On the Roof of the World 97

6 The Heart of Darkness 123

7 One Thousand Words for Rice 145

Part 3 Under the Southern Cross 167

8 Islands of the Many-Coloured Waters 169

9 See You at Machu Picchu 193

10 The Headwaters of the Amazon 215

Part 4 To the North 241

11 The Lost World of the Maya 243

12 Haida: The Surface People 269

13 May You Walk the Trail of Beauty 295

Epilogue: The Unimaginable Future 325

Bibliography 337

Acknowledgements 342

Index 343

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Pilgrim in the Palace of Words is a book that makes linguistics an enjoyable read by tying the authors own experiences together. From a nightmare at airport security to walking through ancient footsteps of civilizations long gone but not forgotten."

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Pilgrim in the Palace of Words: A Journey Through the 6,000 Languages of Earth 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
sarbow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful though-provoking book, written in an accessible and personal style. It has humor, usually when the author is laughing at himself and some sad parts. It makes you think about our world and how people can be very kind or very cruel to each other. Its a book about languages, but mostly about culture and shared experience.
rnorthrop2001 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Quite an entertaining book, though Dixon has a habit of repeating himself. he others a definition for agglutinated two or three times. Dixon's use of metaphor and language in general is excellent but at all times is he clear. His enlightened view of different cultures is wonderful and refreshing. His examinations of language are the most fascinating aspect of the text. If you have an interest in other cultures, other languages or just travel literature, read it.
Akoda More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It's funny but it's also informative. I turned to my wife many, many times to say "Hey, you gotta here this." A great book for anyone who likes travelling.