By D. E. Ager
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Additional resources for Identity, Insecurity and Image: France and Language (Multilingual Matters)
This law made the use of French obligatory in five domains: education, employment, audiovisual media, commerce, and public meetings such as colloquia and congresses. The new law had, as its purpose, 'to guarantee to French people the right to use their language and to ensure that it is used in certain circumstances of their everyday and professional life'. In presenting the proposal to the Senate, the Minister for Culture and Francophonie, Jacques Toubon, declared that it was necessary for three reasons: firstly, that French, like Japanese, Italian, Spanish, German in their countries, should not be 'relegated to secondary uses' in the face of English.
In all Page 19 periods of history, the aim has been to reinforce the use of French and make the use of other languages as difficult as possible. In terms of language policy, the fight for territorial integrity is also the fight against symbols of fragmentation: the regional languages represent regionalism and regional particularisms, and defeating them and all they stand for reduces the major danger: that France may disintegrate. The continuing importance of this policy to contemporary France can be gauged from official statements and actions from the last quarter of the twentieth century.
USA: 325 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, USA. Canada: 5201 Dufferin Street, North York, Ontario M3H 5T8, Canada. O. Box 586, Artamon, NSW, Australia. Copyright © 1999 Dennis Ager All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form or by any means without permission in writing from the publisher. Printed and bound in Great Britain by WBC Book Manufacturers Ltd. Page v CONTENTS Figures vi Tables and maps vii Acknowledgements viii Preface ix Introduction 1 Part 1: Insecurity 1 Territorial insecurity: fear of the regional languages 15 2 Fear mixed with pride: the myth of the hexagon 42 3 Social insecurity: fear of the social outsider 63 4 Fear mixed with guilt: the myth of inclusion 86 5 Americanophobia: fear of Franglais 98 Part 2: Identity 6 Identity and the status of French: the language of the Republic 116 7 Managing French to serve the state: stability, elasticity and polyvalency 145 Part 3: Image 8 Gaining influence and prestige: Francophonie, cultural relations and French abroad 165 9 Multilingualism: a policy for openness and diversity?