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French’s Customs and Language Essay


A great proportion of people speaking French language are from different nations that are not originally French. As a matter of fact, out of 200 million people who speak French, about 165 million are non-French.

Factors such as immigration, globalization and other external factors have corroded the primordial French customs. Immigration to France from Africa and other countries of the world leads to the infusion of cultural practices in France at the expense of French customs (Kimmelman, 2010).

As a result of colonialism, the French language was adopted by most African countries consequently influencing their ethnic and traditional practices. Switzerland, Belgium and other African countries such as Togo, Cameroun, and Tunisia consider the French language as an alternative.

This is because French is known to them as a foreign language (Kimmelman, 2010). In these countries conversing in French, the commensurate French customs are not reflected. In fact, in some African countries, French is termed as leftovers brought about by colonization.

The French used language as a tool of assimilation, a strategy aimed at conquering countries in the Western part of Africa.

French language in France is soon fading away to the extent that some of the French envoys enjoy communicating in English rather than French, leaving Africa (in French) as the only hope that could enhance the growth of French (Kimmelman, 2010).

The so-called elite in French society has switched from speaking French to other languages; the English language is the dominant one.

Globalization, commonly referred to as Americanization has also contributed to the desire of French people not to speak their language, resulting in an increasing urge to claim a distinct position in the dynamic world.

Music, movies and international agreements are some of the avenues that were targeted for promoting French customs.

The UN has pioneered the French language as a move directed towards preserving French customs and achievements. Also, French is one of the most spoken languages; it assists the UN to deliver their messages globally.

International organizations of the Francophonie are some of the avenues used to globally promote the language (Kimmelman, 2010). UN mobilizes writers and poets to link language and customs in their writings: Furthermore, it offers free of charge language classes for their staff.

They are taught the six most spoken languages in the world. These include Arabic, French, English, Spanish, Chinese and Russian (Kimmelman, 2010). This is an action taken to endorse multi-languages as a means of enhancing cultural diversity.

In conclusion, research is being carried out with the motive of understanding the links between French language and their cultural values.

Henry, an author and a lecturer at the University of South Carolina, explained in his book that English and some newly introduced words in French are the major reasons behind the diminishing French language (Kimmelman, 2010).

As part of his work, he focused on the similarity between French and English communication groups but not the existing dissimilarities.

Evaluation of Language

French as an internationally recognized lingo is used in different countries with dissimilar customs. Francophone institutions have been used as international avenues for enhancing French language and customs, thereby contributing to the modification of African customs (United Nations, 2010).

The French language is also used as an instrument to tarnish customs consequently promoting the growth of French language and customs.

This method has proved to be effective since the inception of colonialism because western customs are dominating Africa at the expense of their cultural practices. In addition to this prove, it is approximated that over fifty percent of people conversing in French are not from France.

This means that the French language is dominating outside France with a subsequent increase in the adoption of French customs.

In French customs, the language is used as a representation of unity. It also indicates the compliance of French people in practicing their customs when one speaks the language.

This is seen in complains aired such that elites including France envoys prefer to use English instead of the state language. This was an indication that the French are not obedient to their customs and traditions; furthermore, they are easily influenced by other customs (Edwards, 2009).

The language is used as an identity for persons who practice French customs and traditions. A person cannot be considered to profess French customs if he/she does not communicate in the French language.

Knowledge of French language is considered as a first step if a person is to practice French customs. Also, one should have reasonable knowledge, i.e., communicate fluently and with good writing skills.

In general, cultural practices are globally fading and eventually dying as a result of influences from various factors.

The main setback that Africans experience is the adoption of western customs that keep on degrading their practices while the people from the west are faced by globalization that relinquish their customs.

A language is a factor to consider when talking about cultural practices and traditions. It acts as a symbol of identity and unity concerning customs. In many countries, it is a constitutional obligation for a person to have a reasonable knowledge of the country’s language to acquire a nationality.

Even though a common language is a factor to consider when talking about cultural practices and traditions, it may not be an assurance for familiar customs or politics.

References:

Edwards, W. (2009). Language, customs, and hegemony in modern France. Choice, Middletown. Retrieved May 24 from http://proquest.umi.com/pqdweb?did=1655414431&Fmt=3&clientId=74379&RQT=309&VName=PQD

Kimmelman, M. (2010). News. International Herald Tribune. Retrieved May 24 FROM http://proquest.umi.com/pqdweb?did=2017881341&Fmt=3&clientId=74379&RQT=309&VName=PQD

Kimmelman, M. (2010).Francophones, Globalization, French language. New York Times. Retrieved May 24 from http://proquest.umi.com/pqdweb?did=2017790661&Fmt=3&clientId=74379&RQT=309&VName=PQD

United Nations, (2010). United Nations: First-ever French language day celebrated at UN Presswire Coventry. Retrieved May 24 from http://www.presswire.net on the World Wide Web. Inquiries to [email protected]

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IvyPanda. "French's Customs and Language." March 13, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/frenchs-customs-and-language/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "French's Customs and Language." March 13, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/frenchs-customs-and-language/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'French's Customs and Language'. 13 March.

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