18 Dec Je Suis Intelligent! Can Alcohol Help You Learn a Foreign Language?
Bonjour! Have you ever wanted to learn another language? Well now you can, with this new language learning program called casual drinking! That’s right, all you gotta do is kick back and enjoy a glass of wine or your favorite brandy. Alcohol and language is apparently a great combination.
Okay, so maybe it’s not quite that simple, but it is true that learning languages with alcohol is easier, studies show. Alcohol and language together in a positive way? What?!
Alcohol and Language: How Does It Work?
Some researchers from the University of Liverpool, King’s College, and Maastricht University put together a study about this. They observed 50 native German speakers who were learning the language of Dutch.
The Germans were given either alcoholic drinks or non-alcoholic drinks to study the different effects they may have while they each try to communicate in Dutch. They had Dutch students listen to recordings of the German students speaking, not knowing which ones had drunk alcohol and which ones didn’t. They were told to tell them which ones did a better job speaking Dutch…
The results were surprising, to say the least.
You probably would never think that alcohol can greatly improve pronunciation of a foreign language, since a sentence with “alcohol and language” is usually about slurred speech.
But as it turned out, the ones who were the drunkest performed the best, having the best pronunciation out of the bunch.
Alcohol is well-documented to reduce cognitive function and motor skills. So how in the world is there an alcohol effect on the brain that helps us learn a second language?
This isn’t the first time this theory has been stated, but it’s the first time it’s been accurately studied. As to why alcohol helps people learn a second language, scientists say it could be the anxiety-reducing effects of alcohol. Scientists aren’t entirely sure, though.
All we know is we’re retaking Spanish and studying next to a bottle of booze!