Alsatian Acts of Identity: Language Use and Language by Vassberg

By Vassberg

A German dialect spoken in Alsace (France), has speedily misplaced approach to French on account that 1945. This e-book investigates language selection, language attitudes and ethnic identification in Alsace at the present time. The Alsatian case examine issues out the advanced interrelationship of linguistic and identification swap with ancient, social and mental strategies.

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Extra info for Alsatian Acts of Identity: Language Use and Language Attitudes in Alsace (Multilingual Matters)

Example text

Among German intellectuals, the feeling was that Alsatians were objectively Germans through culture, language, and ethnicity, and that appropriate policies would soon help Alsatians discover their true identity. Edwin yon Manteuffel, who was statthalter (governor) in 1879, thought it necessary to win over Alsatian notables and industrialists by flattering them and asking for their advice, and speaking French to them. But his policies were criticized, especially by German immigrants to Alsace, who thought that he should do more to improve the lot of common people, who were 'the only Alsatians ...

They are critical like Frenchmen, they laugh like Frenchmen, and like them, they make fun of ... ' Second, linguistically French and German have long been in contact in Alsace and French has long been a language of prestige in the entire German world. Levy asserts that children from the upper-class German families were sent to France for their education as early as the eleventh century (Philipps, 1975: 269). Although it is difficult to know how widespread this practice was, it may have been the beginning of the prestige enjoyed by French culture and the French language in the German world.

Likely to repay concessions with sympathy for German rule' (Craig, 1984: 87). The conciliatory policies of the statthalters in Alsace disappointed many Germans. More repressive measures were taken after all 15 Alsatian deputies voted against an army bill supported by Bismarck, which would have increased the army's presence in Alsace. Intensified surveillance of pro-French groups and individuals was increased. Two hundred social and cultural organizations which were suspected of anti-German feeling were dissolved.

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