Listen to Lexicon Valley Episode No. 13: Capturing the Past
For period dramas like Downton Abbey and Mad Men, historical authenticity is crucial to the viewer experience. Vigilant designers work from photos to accurately recreate everything from kitchenware to hairstyles. But what about the dialogue? Are writers able to faithfully capture the way people actually spoke 50 or 100 years ago? Turns out it’s harder than you might think. Listen as Bob Garfield and I discuss the detective work of history grad student Ben Schmidt, whose computer program is uncovering the many, many anachronisms not only in these two programs, but even in the work of Edith Wharton.
You'll find every Lexicon Valley episode at slate.com/lexiconvalley, or in the player below:
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TODAY IN SLATE
The Irritating Confidante
John Dickerson on Ben Bradlee’s fascinating relationship with John F. Kennedy.
My Father Invented Social Networking at a Girls’ Reform School in the 1930s
Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
The All The President’s Men Scene That Captured Ben Bradlee
Is It Better to Be a Hero Like Batman?
Or an altruist like Bruce Wayne?
Driving in Circles
The autonomous Google car may never actually happen.