The ombudswoman of the national daily paper Le Monde analyses readers' worries about the decline of the French language: "Protecting the language, the neglected task of the French ombudsman, is misunderstood abroad. Our colleagues mock this 'craze', which they see as a symptom of our touchy nationalism. However the abundant mail we receive from readers shows no sign of this. What one finds, however, are major concerns about the relentless decline of the French language, replaced by English not only internationally but also in France, where fashion and a sort of childish snobbism result in the spread of 'Frenglish' both in the suburbs and in so-called intellectual circles. ... When more and more readers write in to call this trend to our attention, it means they are convinced that the press in general and Le Monde in particular bear responsibility for this decline."
Le Monde (France)
As if "those major concerns about the relentless decline of the French language" were anything else than nationalist rage at seeing their little cultural empire shrink and English spread unabated. The French can't seem to understand that English is the one and only global tongue and that no other language can even be deemed a remote candidate for that status. The world needs a common language and it has it. Period.
Courrier International links to a Le Monde web page where the above text can be read in French. It is identical in the French version except that here it laments the fact that this year's French Eurovision contestant thought it better for his European career to sing in French. I bet they would pass a law banning French Eurovision contestant from singing in French if Chirac were still president. But Chirac would have prevented this scandal from happening in the first place.
Article publié le 22 Juin 2008
Par Véronique Maurus
Source : LE MONDE
Taille de l'article : 912 mots
La défense de la langue, tâche récurrente du médiateur français, est mal comprise à l'étranger : nos confrères se gaussent de cette « marotte » qui, à leurs yeux, fleure le nationalisme ombrageux prêté à notre pays. Rien de tel, pourtant, dans l'abondant courrier que nous adressent les lecteurs. Mais beaucoup d'inquiétude face à l'inexorable recul du français, supplanté par l'anglais non seulement dans le monde, mais aussi en France, où la mode et une sorte de snobisme puéril répandent l'usage du franglais dans les banlieues comme dans les cercles dits intellectuels. Dernier sujet d'alarme, la prestation, le 24 mai, de Sébastien Tellier, qui représentait la France à l'Eurovision en chantant... en anglais.