"We Don't Say That" NPR Podcast
This podcast discusses terminology used by and for Black folx in France, and how this has changed over the past half century. This is especially interesting because of the influence that the Académie Française has (or tries to have) over the French language, while demonstrating the connection between race and language. [Published on 05-01-2019]
'Deplorable' Québécois accent has royal roots, linguist asserts
The French typically have an unfavorable opinion of the accents spoken by the denizens of Québec, Canada. But like Martha's Vineyard, many of the linguistic forms used by this community may predate those in France. [Published on 10-09-2008]
Resistance to Borrowing: Léo Ferré's "La Langue Française"Play video
Léo Ferré's "La Langue Française" (1962) exemplifies standard language ideologies that consider foreign loanwords a threat to a language's 'purity' or even its very existence, the joke of the song centering on the irony of the singer declaring that he loves to speak French as he crams borrowings from English into everything he says.
For Me Formidable, French & English code-switchingPlay video
This song utilizes code-switching between English and French to make use of puns and access prestige in both languages. It questions constraint models with its intra-sentential switches that produce ungrammatical expressions in both English and French.
Tant Que J'ai Soleil (Staring at the Sun - French Version) - MIKAPlay video
A song by French-speaking British artist MIKA, who is known for releasing songs in English, French, and occasionally both, as this example demonstrates. It features examples of inter- and intra-sentential codeswitching and has an all-English counterpart against which it can be compared.
Made In-MedinePlay video
This song is "Made In" by the French-Algerian Kabyle rapper Medine. The lyrics are mostly in French, with code switching to English and briefly to Arabic. The song is about being proud of one's ethnic/cultural heritage and/or immigrant identity. The song celebrates diverse origins and experiences, and the code switching helps to support that message and lend the lyrics a global feeling.
Cooking GlossaryPlay video
This video defines common cooking terms used in kitchens and recipes. Many French phrases are used intermittently with English. Additionally, some culinary terms can mean other things in English. For example, 'pat' can be used to reference an amount of butter, but is typically a verb.
How to Sound Cooler in FrenchPlay video
This is a (humorous) tutorial for people who are learning French and want to sound more like a native speaker. It speaks to the French tendency to rely on sounds (like ouf, bof, etc) to convey subtle meaning in phrases.
A box for a chocolate lava cake from Domino's Pizza which refers to French as "fancy-speak" which relates to our discussion of language ideologies. [Published on 03-15-2017]
Russian Aristocracy Spoke French
Prior to the Decembrist revolt, the Russian aristocracy's principal language was French, not Russian, even within family and personal relationships. Children of aristocrats were forbidden and even punished, for speaking Russian. After the revolt, the aristocracy started speaking Russian, or risk punishment. French continued to be spoken by the aristocracy, but the social situation determined which language, Russian or French, was appropriate. However, the addition of Russian, did result in one set of language rules for men and another to women. [Published on 12-04-2008]
Paw Paw FrenchPlay video
This video is about a French dialect that is spoken in Old Mines, Missouri. It is said to be one of the oldest dialects of French that was formed in the United States called “Paw Paw French”. The dialect takes from Cajun, American Indian and the Canadian French Language that was made by early French settlers in the 1700’s. It is an endangered dialect that some of the residents of the town are trying to keep alive.
Woman kicked out of Quebec hospital for speaking englishPlay video
Two reporters from the Sun News discuss the Quebec French language ideologies that have begun spurring discrimination towards other linguistic communities within the region.
The Specialized Language of Sports
This is a link to a blog post describing the specialized language of sports. This post highlights the various terminology used in a variety of sports. The author describes some of his favorite terms in both American sports as well as terms used in European countries. He likes these terms for the actual sound the words make when uttered. Tags: Community of practice, British, French, Portuguese, Italian, Slang, semantics [Published on 08-11-2010]
Youth codeswitchingPlay video
This is an example of a child having a conversation with both his parents in 3 different languages.
Quebec’s War on English: Language Politics Intensify in Canadian Province
An interesting insight to the French language regulation in 2013 in Quebec, Canada, and how there is a whole framework in place to try and regulate how business interact with the bilingualism that exists in the community. [Published on 04-08-2013]
Code-switching examplePlay video
This is a perfect example of a child being put in a very unique linguistic environment. This video depicts code-switching for a boy at a very young age. While discussing a hole found in a pair of shorts, the boy uses Indonesian, French and English to talk to his parents.
Montreal, a francophone, anglophone and multilingual city
Bilingualism/multilingualism of Montreal; Sociolinguistic Symposium;
Toward the end of the obnoxiously prescriptivist académie française?
The current French minister of culture and the French language holds a very progressist discourse about fluidity of language, its constant change and the ever growing richness of it. [Published on 03-12-2015]
How Do You Pronounce "Bon Iver"?
Our discussion of the foreign /a:/ potentially sounding pretentious made me think of this issue... A cause of confusion and debate among hipsters and indie music listeners has been the pronunciation of Justin Vernon's musical project, Bon Iver. I have always pronounced it /bɒn aɪvər/* to avoid sounding pretentious and made fun of my boyfriend when he pronounced it in the more correct way, /bəʊn i:veər/*. It turns out that the band's creator doesn't mind it either way! Could the pronunciation of this band name tell us something about the speaker? It may not be as political as "Iraq", but I think it's worth discussing. *Please forgive any IPA errors, I'm still getting the hang of it. [Published on 02-13-2012]
Bon Cop, Bad CopPlay video
A clip from Bon Cop, Bad Cop, a 2006 Canadian movie that bases much of its humor on the use of Canadian French and English in Canada.
Urban Culture French, Northern French & Arabic in contact (rap music from North of France)Play video
- From Lucas' Assignment 1 in Contact Languages - Does it sound French to you? Why/why not? Can you spot the French/Arabic code-switching?
France protects itself from dreaded English language
A Daily Mail (a British publication) article on the restrictions on English borrowings into French put forth by the Academie Francaise in France. [Published on 03-12-2008]
American Tongues: Cajun EnglishPlay video
A clip from the documentary American Tongues featuring two speakers of Cajun English who code-switch between Cajun English and French
Language and Politics in Belgium
A 2010 article about the continuing linguistic divide in Belgium (between French and Flemish) that reflects and reinforces a political divide.