May 27, 2022

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When French promoted Shakespeare’s language


“B.French companies speak French. It seems obvious. Still, this is how the French Academy begins its report released on Tuesday. In this 31-page document, Immortals condemns the use of English in corporate communications by ministries, local authorities, public institutions and other large groups.

None of the institutions founded by Cardinal Richelieu in 1634 escaped. It passed slogans, symbols, names and labels through a sieve of the French language. As a result, ANSES ‘”BioSite Helpdesk”, Engie’s “Client-Centricity” strategy, AgroParisTech’s “Food’Inn Lab” or “Workstations” from the Post Office. “The number of English languages ​​is used instead of the current French words or expressions, which, with the inevitable consequence of the progressive extinction of the French equivalents, are immediately understood by the French speakers,” laments the immaterials of Quai de Conte.

Small hits

Is it serious? Yes, says in an interview Point Jacques Dupon, former Minister of Culture and father of the famous “French language” law (1994). But one can quickly forget that French also interferes with some foreign languages, first and foremost English.

According to the most serious Oxford dictionary, Anglo-Saxons use the expression “je ne sais quoi” to refer to “easily indescribable or unnamed quality”. phonetically pronounced as “/ nə seɪ ˈkwɑː /”, this formula seems to be the most chic among the diners in the city. “Chic” is an adjective borrowed from English by Moliியர்re speakers. Although the word is originally derived from the German “chic”, English speakers speak of “déjà-vu”, sometimes setting “dates” in love. A word that French youth translate as “date”.

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The French call themselves – not surprisingly – in the diet: “Amus-pooch”, “Horse-d’Ouvre” (often changed to “starter” today), “aperitif”, “cream broiler”, “baguette”. No wonder it is an animated film ரட்டடூயில் (2007), from Pixar, has a very local name.

Moliere’s language also seeks to thwart linguistic push-ups in English-speaking countries. Sometimes without success. Who uses the “hashtag” in everyday language to refer to “hashtag”, “ramdam” to trigger “bus” or “spam” when deleting “spam”? Sometimes successful, thankfully. When the French say “computer”, the Portuguese like “computer” and the Italians like “computer”. Small victories that delight the immortals of the French Academy.