March 17, 2006

WHY TRY TO COMMUNICATE IN A DEAD LANGUAGE?:

English plagues French news channel (Colin Randall, March 17, 2006, LONDON DAILY TELEGRAPH)

France's television dream of mounting a challenge to CNN and the British Broadcasting Corp. has suffered an embarrassing setback after reports that the new channel would broadcast most of its output in English. [...]

The satirical weekly Le Canard Enchaine quoted Jean-Pierre Paoli, right-hand man to CII's head, Alain de Pouzilhac, as saying: "It could be half in English, half in French or a different proportion."

But the weekly said CII executives told counterparts at the state-owned France Televisions, a partner with the private TF1 network in the venture, that French-language transmissions would be limited to three hours each morning. The rest, Le Canard Enchaine said, would be "in the language of Shakespeare."

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 17, 2006 8:25 AM
Comments

If they want the world hear their propaganda, they can't do it in French. Who else cares to speak French, except those in France, in some elite circles of ex-colonies in Africa, in Montreal,in Haiti,may be. Even their student protesters have to protest in English.

Posted by: ic at March 17, 2006 2:48 PM

If they do it in the language of Shakespeare then neither English nor French speakers will be able to understand and that might be blessing all round.

Posted by: erp at March 17, 2006 3:23 PM

If they do it in the language of Shakespeare then neither English nor French speakers will be able to understand and that might be blessing all round.

Posted by: erp at March 17, 2006 3:28 PM

oj, for you all languages other than English are dead.

Posted by: Mörkö at March 17, 2006 3:40 PM

Not Spanish, Hindi, Urdu & Arabic.

Posted by: oj at March 17, 2006 3:52 PM

So your definition of a dead language has nothing to do with reality? OK.

Posted by: Mörkö at March 17, 2006 3:57 PM

Has to do with whether it's growing or dying.

Posted by: oj at March 17, 2006 4:00 PM

If the number of speakers of a language goes down, it doesn't mean the language is dying. And I don't think this is even the case with French.

Arabic is a language of the poor and illiterate, whereas French speakers are generally well-off and well-educated. Millions of Arabs dream of learning French and moving to France, and millions have done that already.

Posted by: Mörkö at March 17, 2006 4:31 PM

the living language of France is Arabic

Posted by: oj at March 17, 2006 4:37 PM

No. Most French Muslims can't speak Arabic.

Posted by: Mörkö at March 17, 2006 5:24 PM

They've already passd the German-speaking Alsatians as France's second language in what, one generation?

Posted by: oj at March 17, 2006 5:38 PM

In a century, French may still be spoken, but it's importance will rank up there with Guarani, Navaho, Yiddish and Manx.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at March 17, 2006 7:06 PM
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