Non-existent advantages of bilingualism

Take executive function.

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Last updated 17/02/2016

Barcelona (1399):

English language (462):

Föcked Translation (414): I posted to a light-hearted blog called Fucked Translation over on Blogger from 2007 to 2016, when I was often in Barcelona. Its original subtitle was "What happens when Spanish institutions and businesses give translation contracts to relatives or to some guy in a bar who once went to London and only charges 0.05€/word." I never actually did much Spanish-English translation (most of my work is from Dutch, French and German) but I was intrigued and amused by the hubristic Spanish belief, then common, that nepotism and quality went hand in hand, and by the nemeses that inevitably followed.

Spain (1881):

Spanish language (504):

Translation (788):


  1. Your title doesn't quite correlate with the findings, so much as with what I believe are your political motives. The most obvious advantage of bi- or tri- lingualism is the ability to read, write and converse in two or three languages. Surely even Paap wouldn't attempt to deny that.

    But anyway, it's an interesting debate. The main takeaway for me is that this is a very imprecise science and the only thing any of them agree on is that the tests are mostly pointless shit (which sort of makes it sound like Paap is wasting his own time as much as anyone else's).

  2. No one's denying that there are advantages, but I always thought that the notion that bilingualism made our brains fundamentally better sounded as if it were driven by ideological wishful thinking, and for once it sounds as if I was right.

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