11/22/2008

French Shrinking in the Netherlands

French used to be a very important foreign language in the Netherlands. Knowledge and use of French have perceptibly shrunk in the last few decades, and this trend is likely to hold:
"het Frans wel onder hevige concurrentie lijdt van het Engels, Duits en tegenwoordig ook Spaans in het beroepsonderwijs. (...) is er steeds meer passieve kennis: leerlingen kunnen de taal wel lezen, maar niet schrijven of spreken. Ook zijn er op de universiteit steeds minder studenten Frans (er zijn zelfs meer studenten Nederlands in Frankrijk dan andersom!)."
Translation: "French is under fierce competition from English, German and now even Spanish in vocational education. (...) Its knowledge is increasingly passive: students can read the language well, but cannot write or speak it. Universities also have seen French enrolment numbers decrease constantly (there are more students of Dutch in France than of French in the Netherlands!)."

8 comments:

Edward J. Cunningham said...

Does anybody know why the study of French is declining in the countries France borders? Do British, Dutch, and Germans who decide not to study French have no intention of visiting France, or are they confident that should they do so, they can find somebody who speaks their native language or English?

Edward J. Cunningham said...

Don't know if you are interested in these links, but you might be:

French told to try smiling for once.

Most obnoxious tourists? The French.

Edward J. Cunningham said...

These articles aren't free, but if you are willing to buy them, they look like they might be promising for your blog:

Toubon or not Toubon: The influence of the English language in contemporary France

American Triumphalism and the "Offensive" Defensiveness of the French

Ronduck said...

Merry Christmas Unfrench!

May our Savior bless your New Year!

Ronduck said...

I forgot to check the box to receive replies!

Unfrench Frenchman said...

Merry Christmas Ronduck, Edward J. Cunningham and all other readers of and contributors to, this blog.

I've been a little busy lately but I have plenty of new material that I shall post in the next few days.

May the Lord be with you!

Anonymous said...

Rentre chez toi au Maroc, sale macaque.
L'Europe n'est pas faite pour toi.
Ton avatar te va bien, demi-nègre.

Unfrench Frenchman said...

"Don't know if you are interested in these links, but you might be:

French told to try smiling for once.

Most obnoxious tourists? The French."

Thanks for the really interesting links Ed. France is becoming just another travel destination, its language, just another regional lingua franca.