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I was on break from college, and proud to tell dad about my new major. “General Studies in the Humanities” sounded cool to me, but he was less impressed. “What the hell use will that be in world?” he wanted to know. “I’ll be a better human,” I snarked, stumped for a better answer. A report released today would have helped my case with dad. The Heart of the Matter comes from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Commission …
Americans in their 60s, 70s and 80s are flocking to language immersion experiences, the New York Times reports. It’s a well-worn axiom that learning a foreign language gets harder the older you get. To which Randy Balla might say: Who cares? The 63-year-old retired teacher took up French recently, and he hasn’t limited his learning to textbooks or computer-based language lessons: Last summer, he took a three-week French immersion program at the University of Quebec, and plans to return this year.