Up Next

New 'chuckling' frog species found in marshes of Staten Island

What is Code Switching?

We’ve all been there. You’re hanging out with your friends when you get a call from your boss. When you pick up the phone, you start talking in your office voice – less slang, more formal and polite (comedy duo Key and Peele have a brilliant take on this, check it out here). There’s a lot of interesting stuff going on behind our subtle changes in language. It’s called code switching – and no, that’s not some kind of computer programming jargon. We talked to NPR’s Shireen Marisol Meraji and Professor Garrard McClendon to find out more.

What is Code Switching?

We’ve all been there. You’re hanging out with your friends when you get a call from your boss. When you pick up the phone, you start talking in your office voice – less slang, more formal and polite (comedy duo Key and Peele have a brilliant take on this, check it out here). There’s a lot of interesting stuff going on behind our subtle changes in language. It’s called code switching – and no, that’s not some kind of computer programming jargon. We talked to NPR’s Shireen Marisol Meraji and Professor Garrard McClendon to find out more.

WHERE TO WATCH