The Allusionist

Audio Sample

Publisher:
Helen Zaltzman

The Allusionist

4.9/5

Critic Rating

Adventures in language with Helen Zaltzman. TheAllusionist.org


Critic Reviews

Score: 4.9

Simon Hill • Wired Feb 20, 2022

"...this witty but accessible show will delight you as it unpacks the evolution of slang, explains euphemisms, and generally celebrates language."

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Score: 5

Nik Addams • Concrete Playground Jul 29, 2021

"The Allusionist is an utterly charming listen that never fails to put a smile on my face while exploring the intricacies (and idiosyncrasies) of the English language."

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Score: 4.6

Miranda Sawyer • The Guardian Dec 27, 2020

"The Allusionist, Helen Zaltzman’s words and language podcast, is always up for a Christmas special, and this year’s “Festivelusionist”, A Festive Hit for 2020, is right on target. So Zaltzman drafted in songwriter and podcaster Jenny Owen Youngs, who has written for Panic! at the Disco and Pitbull (quite a range there), and together they came up with a new, more appropriately 2020, Christmas song. Her husband, Martin Austwick, also joined in, and the resulting show – and festive song – was lovely to hear. I even felt quite merry afterwards."

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Score: 5

Rachael (Skokie Library) • Skokie Library Jan 10, 2020

"Helen Zaltzman is positively gleeful when she talks about language. This show is hilarious and I learn new things all the time."

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Score: 5

Steve Greene • IndieWire Dec 16, 2019

"With curses and courage, identity and idioms, this rapid-fire trip through the “Allusionist” archive is an ideal entry point to the ways the show has balanced its etymological pursuits with care, humor, and empathy. Come for the proper portmanteau skepticism, stay for the fact that the word “hundred” itself hasn’t always meant 100."

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Score: 5

Kevin Goldberg • Discover Pods Jan 17, 2018

"The Allusionist is witty and quick. Where Roman Mars’ smooth voice often transports you to another location, Helen Zaltzman’s British accent and up-tempo pace plays similar to a podcast brain game and I mean this in the kindest regards."

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