Case S01E99 – Season Two Trailer


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We’re going on holiday for a bit. It’s a vacation before we start Season Two. On this note, what sort of cases, you might ask, will Season Two bring? And what can you listen to, read, or watch, till en clair returns? Below you will find data, audio credits, further reading, and a transcript of the podcast.

Audio credits

David Hilowitz – Angle of Light
Kai Engel – Fading Rays Waltz


S01E99 – End of Season One, preview for Season Two

In case you somehow got fifteen  episodes into this series and still have no real clue what you’re listening to right now, or if your podcast app did that annoying thing where it starts you at the newest episode and this is that episode, welcome to en clair, an archive of forensic linguistics, literary detection, and language mysteries. You can find case notes about this episode, including credits, acknowledgements, and links to further reading at the blog. And, if you get a moment, leave us a rating wherever you get your podcasts from.

Season Two sneak preview

We’re going on holiday for a bit. It’s a vacation before we start Season Two. On this note, what sort of cases, you might ask, will Season Two bring? Who knows, there could be some murders, a plethora of hilariously bad apologies, some wildly ridiculous censorship, dictators using linguistics to tighten their stranglehold on power, queens of code, undeciphered manuscripts that seem to have driven people mad, mysterious online cats, and I will be amazed if I manage to get away without doing something, somewhere, on current political events.

In case this worried you – it didn’t, but you never know – there is far more in the “future episodes” spreadsheet today than there was when I started it. It opened with about fifty cases and rather than shrinking with each episode, it has expanded to over two hundred.

Could really do with a half dozen clones right about now.

Anyway, I realise that life, without en clair, will be very hard. So what can you do in the meantime till this podcast returns to the airwaves? Well, I have a short list of recommendations.

Let’s start with podcasts. You could try listening to Subtitle. It’s a language journalism podcast that introduces listeners to people with a linguistic story to tell. Future episodes include climbing inside the brain of a polyglot, the best ways to learn a second language, and the story of a book so imperilled, it went underground for years.

But also there are other excellent podcasts, like Lingthusiasm, the Allusionist, A Way With Words, Lexicon Valley, Word of Mouth, The Vocal Fries, the History of English Podcast, Talk the Talk, and a bunch more besides. Just do an internet search for linguistics podcasts. You’ll have pods for days.

But maybe you want some fiction in your life? Well, try Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn, or The Last Samurai by Helen DeWitt, and of course, you simply cannot go wrong with The Lord of the Rings. But get a copy with all the appendices, if you can.

If you fancy something a little less labour intensive and just want to binge some films, then there’s The Terminal from 2004, Lost in Translation from 2003, and of course, of course, Arrival from 2016.


An en clair episode wouldn’t be complete without proper acknowledgements and this time I want to name as many as possible of the people who helped make this first season the success it has been.

Three different people peer reviewed the early episodes for me and sent exhaustive, thoughtful, brilliant feedback. Tim Grant, and Rebecca and Piotr Jagodzinski – your input at the foundational stages has been absolutely essential and I cannot thank you enough. Rebecca gets a second shoutout for being the engine that powered the research and fact-checking behind the en clair from episode five onwards. If you need a researcher, keep your damn hands off, she’s mine and she’s awesome. Go get your own podcast episode research genius.

A huge thank you to the ESRC who funded the Enigma three-part miniseries as part of the Festival of Social Science. Another huge thank you to Jonathan Culpeper and Elena Semino for being independent, external reviewers, moral support, and extremely useful sources of help and advice for practical obstacles. A thank you to Claire Nance for patiently checking my casual soirée into the world of phonetics in the Yorkshire Ripper miniseries. A thank you to those listeners – journalists, audio engineers, lawyers, politicians, civil servants and more – who variously got in touch with tips, technical suggestions, alerts for breaking stories, answers to legal questions, and all sorts of useful information. You all gave your time willingly and freely and I can only hope the podcast itself is some repayment for your efforts.

Penultimately, thank you to my department, Linguistics and English Language, and to my university, Lancaster University, at large. Both generally sit back and watch me do stuff and probably wonder what, even, are you doing. This weird new tech is weird. But not only do they not get in my way, they have unhesitatingly and consistently provided all kinds of support, from advice and tech to blog platforms and publicity shout-outs. There is a reason my department is rated as one of the highest in the world, and it’s largely because of stuff like this.

And the very last thanks of all go to you, you wonderful listener. ALL of you wonderful listeners. Keep podding away.


This is the final episode of Season One, and it has been an absolute blast. Here’s to an even better Season Two.


One thought on “Case S01E99 – Season Two Trailer

  1. I can only say a huge massive thank you!! I’ve learnt so many things, not only by listening to your podcast, which is great, but now I have no doubt that Lancaster is like Yorkshire, just much nicer, it gave you Henry VII! Thanks to your podcast I’ve turned a true ‘red roser’, and a ‘guinea-pig’ for your uni (best of wishes for Rebecca Jar… nski and her PhD). Have a great brilliant time out of the stage, a wonderful Christmas, and come back next year with your bright ideas!!

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