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Conversations with the world's best language learners

Get an inside look at how polyglots, linguists, and everyday people master languages the smart way.

"John is a true language aficionado. Knowledgeable, motivating, entertaining. He hunts out the best guests and does awesome interviews which are inspiring for aspiring language learners. Great stuff!"

Olly Richards

Founder of StoryLearning®

Why Should You Listen to the Language Mastery Show?

There are a LOT of language podcasts out there these days, so why should you invest your precious time listening to mine?


I have tracked down the world's most effective language learners and picked their brains on exactly how they learn one (or dozens!) of languages. 


Using the strategies, methods, and mindsets shared by my expert guests, you can shave YEARS off of your path to fluency.


Listening to the stories of other successful language learners is inspiring and helps you feel less alone on your own language learning journey.

"Great Language Learning Advice"

John’s philosophy and approach are spot-on: You don’t need to be gifted, spend tons of money, or move to another country to learn a language. You just need to be dedicated and consistent.

Scott Burke

About the Host

Howdy, I’m John Fotheringham, a linguist, teacher, podcaster, and the author of Master Japanese and Master Mandarin.

Like most language learners, I really struggled to learn through formal classes. But once I realized that I could learn faster and have more fun by creating my own immersion environment, my progress took off.

I now teach others how to learn through the same immersion-based approach, no matter where in the world you are.

I’ve been learning and teaching languages for over two decades, including studying Linguistics at Western Washington University, teaching adults in the U.S., Japan, and Taiwan, presenting at multinational companies, working as a translator and interpreter for the Japanese government, and now blogging, podcasting, and publishing books on independent language learning.


Why I Started This Podcast

I released the first episode of the Language Mastery Show way back in 2009 (when most people still had no idea what a "podcast" was).

It proved to be the perfect excuse for having in-depth conversations with linguistic heroes of mine, many of whom remain close friends to this day.

Though the friend building aspect of running a podcast has been a delightful side effect, my primary goal has always been to empower independent language learners by highlighting the habits, methods, and mindsets of the world's best language learners.


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