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  • The Shakespeare Club's performance of "Julius Caesar" will be on April 29 and 30 at 7:00 p.m. in the WAUD. Admission is $5.

  • Festival of the Arts is April 26 and 27 from 6-9 p.m.

  • Come to A234 on April 26 during lunch for a presentation on immigration and refugee settlement. Pizza will be served.

  • The media center will be closed before and during school April 26 for SMOB voting.

  • See Ms. Safran in B311 if you're interested in becoming Whitman's liaison to the Montgomery County Regional SGA.

  • Whitman Idol is April 25 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium. Admission is $5.

  • Anyone interested in auditioning as a speaker at graduation should come to A212 on April 27 after school.

  • Tickets for prom are being sold starting April 24 at $45 per person.

  • The Science Club will be hosting interactive discussions and presentations on April 25. Come to Room C326 after school.

  • Dogs will be visiting Whitman on April 21. Stop by the small gym during both lunch periods.

The beauty of language

Graphic+by+Charlotte+Alden.+
Graphic by Charlotte Alden.

Graphic by Charlotte Alden.

Graphic by Charlotte Alden.

By Emma Sorkin

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When I was little, my parents would talk to each other across the dinner table in broken Spanish. They were nowhere near fluent, but they knew enough to keep, what I always assumed were, secrets from me and my sister.

Much like my parents, my grandparents would also secretly speak to each other but in Yiddish.  From the minute I heard the foreign sounds and words rolling off my relatives’ tongues, I was hooked: language was a secret, and I wanted in.

Naturally, I jumped at the chance to learn a new language. In elementary school, I started learning French. In middle school, I began taking Spanish, which I still study.

Each language contains countless unique words, phrases and rules. Each language is absolute: if you don’t speak it, you won’t understand it. While language has the terrifying power to divide us, it also has the incredible power to unite us. We need to celebrate and accept language and the diversity it encourages.

Language is a secret that everyone can possess, and to me, that’s beautiful.

Learning multiple languages exposes people to millions of opportunities and offers chances to travel, explore, or talk to people across the globe. Language allows anyone willing to learn it the chance to thrive in the richness of various cultures.

In countless ways, Language allows for self expression. In Yiddish, for example, “Schlep” describes the action of going a great distance, or out of the way, while carrying something heavy or unnecessary. In Spanish, “Sobremesa” describes the period during a meal when everybody is done eating, yet remains talking at the table. In French, “L’ésprit d’escalier” describes the phenomenon of coming up with the perfect retort or reply too late. English doesn’t have one all-encompassing phrase to express any of these actions or feelings.

Every language offer various forms of expression that others do not, and to me that is the greatest secret. The ability to identify with other cultures is more important than any formal policy or border. It’s no wonder countries struggle with acceptance when so many can’t comprehend or even begin to understand what other people are describing.

The notion that new concepts exist that I don’t have the vocabulary to even fathom amazes me. Language is a secret that everyone can possess, and to me, that’s beautiful.

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The Student News Site of Walt Whitman High School
The beauty of language