Language: Relating with the World

Season 2, Ep. 6

Join Elizabeth and Catriona for a thought-provoking conversation with our episode guide Philippa Bayley as we delve into how language can help us relate with ourselves, other people, and the earth, and provide fresh perspectives and energy on topics such as climate change. 


Philippa is a research scientist turned public engagement practitioner and research manager with a passion to create unique spaces that help people think differently, whether that is 1:1 or in large-scale public events. She has worked across a range of disciplines from neuroscience to cybersecurity, but the heart of her work lies in rethinking our relationship with the earth. 


As part of our time together, we showcase ‘living-language-land’, which Philippa is one of the Creative Producers of. A recently-launched global nature language project for COP26, living-language-land experiments with how an expanded lexicon for our relationship with land and nature can both honour minority and endangered languages, and offer fresh inspiration for tackling our environmental crisis.


We hope you enjoy this wide-ranging episode in which we touch on topics such as empathy, responsibility, right relationship, science and indigenous wisdom and learn new words from around the world.


If you'd like to explore this and other subjects further, you're very welcome to join our private Facebook group, 'Unfurling Podcast'.

References (with hyperlinks): 

~0: Unfurling Podcast Facebook group

~1: Unfurling One-Year Celebration LinkedIn Post

~2: Philippa Bayley

~2: “Language: Singing Land Back Into Being”, Unfurling Podcast

~4: Elle Harrison

~6: PhD in Neuroscience at UCL (brain development in embryonic zebrafish)

~7: Cabot Institute for the Environment

~7: Neville Gabie

~11: living-language-land

~ 12: “Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants” by Robin Wall Kimmerer 

~13: Noongar, Western Australia

~14: Jessie Little Doe Baird, Wampanoag Language Revitalisation Project

~17: Sardak: “the ancestors and owners of the land” from Ladakhi language, Ladakh, India

~18: śaff: “track; print; unexpectedly, it turns out to be” from Mehri language, Southern Oman

~19: Hyká: “name; stone; speech” from Mysk Kubun language, Central Colombia

~20: Tiokasin Ghosthorse, Lakota, USA

~24: Jessie Little Doe Baird: “In our language they left all the lessons for us.” 

~27: British Council’s COP26 Creative Commissions programme

~29: The Forgiveness Project

~31: “A Counter-Desecration Phrasebook” as “a glossary of enchantment for the whole earth, which would allow nature to talk back and would help us to listen” in “Landmarks” by Robert Macfarlane

~32: “Cultural and spiritual significance of nature”, IUCN

~35: COP26

~35: Partners, living-language-land

~37: Lakota idea of children being born with confidence with the earth and growing that over time

~39: living-language-land website

~40: Robin Wall Kimmerer

~41: Robert Macfarlane 

~41: Barbara Kingsolver

~41: How can you get involved? Living-language-land

~48 : Nelson Mandela: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”

~50: Ïe cho: “good path” from Mysk Kubun language, Central Colombia

~50: Devon Pilgrim project 

~50: Jeremiah, 6:16: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.”

~54: “Climate Change (Pt 2): "Start with Strong"”, Unfurling Podcast

~54: “The Lost Words” by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris

~55: “Landmarks” by Robert Macfarlane: “In both Lewis and Arizona, Language is used not only to navigate but also to charm the land. Words act as compass; place-speech serves literally to en-chant the land - to sing it back into being, and to sing one’s being back into it.”

~57: The African Grey Parrots at Battersea Park Children’s Zoo



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