Future discounting and language

An interesting paper suggests that speakers languages where the future is clearly separated from the present show less future-oriented behavior as measured through health-related behaviors, saving, etc.. This is a beautiful result, if it is indeed real. The classifications were taken from the European Science Foundation’s Typology of Languages in Europe project, so I do not suspect unconscious data doctoring. There could be confounders, but nothing too obvious comes to mind. This result seems to me legitimate and another interesting demonstration of the strong connections between language and thought.

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