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Message de virginia posté le 2004-06-25 10:50:43 (S | E | F | I)
I've found this article in French. I've taken it from the newspaper "Le Monde". (31 of July 2003)

Since the Middle Ages, the French language has shown extraordinary hospitality to foreign words.
Travelling words, which have been borrowed from closely or more tenuously related languages, or indeed from mysterious foreign languages, have arrived in successive waves on our shores, brought to us by merchants or mariners, travellers or scientists, princes or soldiers, conquerors or immigrants. We have been able to take advantage of a variety of political and economic circumstances in order to acquire thousands of words over the centuries. How could we speak French today if we did not have polyglot tendencies?
In given hospitality to Arabic, Hebrew, Turkish and Greek words, to Dutch or Scandinavian words, to German, Slavonic and Hungarian words, to English words, to Spanish, Portuguese and Italian words, to Amerindian, African, Indian and Asiatic words, we have accepted a multitude of cultural gifts. In fact, borrowing vocabulary from another language means we are making the best encounter with another vision of the world and that is the most important thing of all.
This migrant words, which are so well assimilated, often seem to resemble good old French words. It's not the case of the Anglo-American words which are numerous and visible in contemporary French. Some people, armed with their patriotic fervour would like to push Anglicism out of France. Claude Duneton declares that French is 'taken over': The French themselves are at fault, 'they are all collaborators at heart'. Meanwhile on the other side of the Atlantic other have declared the hunting season for Frenchism open. The 'Christian Science Monitor' gives an amused echo of this quarrel reminding people of the urgent need to give up words like 'to desarm', 'United States', 'current diplomatic dispute', 'imperialism', 'people', 'modern'...
The strong similarity of these reactions has a certain wit, it reveals something deep-rooted. As far as language is concerned, there is nothing surprising in the fact that the mystical monster of protectionism surfaced again in the context of the recent Franco-American political crisis... The profusion of English terms in contemporary French suggests an enslavement to the old Anglo-American culture and vice versa...
All languages are in crisis and the current problems of French are identical to those of British English, Russian, German, Italian or Spanish:Our lexicons are becoming Americanized....

Réponse: re de brunk, postée le 2004-06-25 14:30:58 (S | E)
this post is really interresting and i read an article from 'science & vie' which deals with this subject : where the languages are from and what the next step of the evolution is.. It would be simplistic to think that all theses languages have been spoken for ever.. thats why its called alive languages.. I think our way of speaking is in constant evolution and that we can't go against.. this is a fact, it is certainly regrettable that some languages disappear little by little.. it's sure we have to protect the different kind of cultures but wouldn't be nice to be able to speak and share ideas with all the people on the world in a same and unique language ?? what i mean here is that i hope we could develop the faculty to keep on speaking our mother tongue, enjoying our own way of living, but, as a second skill, to be able to develop a quite universal language.. and the english seems to be on the right track...

Réponse: re de virginia, postée le 2004-06-26 17:20:09 (S | E)
I agree with you on the fact that it would be very useful if everyone had the same language.
But do you really think that this universal language wouldn't destroy all the other ones?? Doesn't the article say that the current international language (that is to say English) already takes over the other languages?

I think that it would be too utopian to believe that we would speak a universal language and our mother tongue... Time after time we would all speak the same language because it would be easier!

People like easiness!

See you!



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