The pleasure and pain of spelling

With the Scripps National Spelling Bee back after a Covid-enforced year off, we conduct our very own spelling quiz. Also, Kavita Pillay offers her take on why Indian American kids perform so well in spelling bees. And author and self-described “crummy” speller David Wolman tells us why he wrote a history of English spelling and the many attempts to reform it. 

Photo of a spelling bee in Fulton, MD, by Howard County Library System via Flickr/Creative Commons. Music in this episode by Cloudline, Podington Bear and Alexander Boyes. Read a transcript of the episode here.

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Episode 33