Can Language Influence Our Saving Habits?

It’s obvious that our native tongue is going to have an influence on how we view the world. As a language teacher I spent many a happy hour teaching the conceptual difference between the present continuous, the future simple and the “going to” future and the intentions these different forms convey.

We native English speakers view time in chunks. It’s also amazing how most of us who write from left to write also view the past on the left and the future on the right.

I was fascinated to discover that behavioural economist Keith Chen has found a provable link between the way languages describe the future and that population’s saving habits. It throws up so many more questions!

See what you make of his astounding Ted Talk here.


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