Say What?


on audiovisual and literary translation, subtitling, and the French & American film industries

En garde, votre langue!

As a linguist and a writer, I’m always curious about how language changes and mutates.  And what it really represents beyonds images, feelings and culture.

French has always, even as a young person when I couldn’t stand it for all its rules, fascinated me in some way.  Because it is so close yet so far from English, it has a strange relationship with native English speakers.  I’m constantly surprised how France and its language are taking on more and more of our words, and mindful, from the time I became serious about my linguistic pursuits, how that’s informing the culture and behavior of its people.

This article marked the 40th assembly of the International Francophone Organization, and explores some of the fascinating identity challenges the country and language are facing.  A typical example for me is that I adore the word réunion and shutter everytime I hear or see the word “meeting” en français.  But then again, expressions like “c’est la vie” and “à la carte” are pretty déjà vu for most Anglophones, and I wonder how much Francophones wince when they hear and see their patrimoine having been subsumed into the Anglo-Saxon linguistic/cultural haze.


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