Anvita Abbi | Scientific American | 23rd May 2023
A linguist immerses herself in a family of almost-extinct Andaman Island languages, and finds in them a seemingly unique grammatical structure modelled on the human body. "The prefix e-, which originally derived from an unknown word for an internal body part, had, over eons, morphed into a grammatical marker signifying any internal attribute, process or activity" (3,800 words)
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Surabhi Ranganathan | Dial | 9th May 2023
What lawyers call the "law of the sea" consists mostly of international treaties regulating trade routes and territorial waters; it has little or nothing useful to say about today's problems and priorities — melting ice-sheets, rising sea-levels, man-made islands, sinking states, floating cities. The law is obsolescent, even obsolete. "The legal distinction between land and sea no longer holds" (5,200 words)