The Defence of French: A language in Crisis?

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Rachel Nisselson


As Robin Adamson explains in The Defence of French: A Language in Crisis?, due to the long history of centralized power and of governmental control of language, the French have a singular relationship with their mother tongue. It is not surprising then that France’s defense of its language is uniquely passionate and uniquely polemical. By referencing past works on the subject, and through her own analysis of the history and current state of the defense of the French language, the author evaluates the situation, draws her own conclusions as to whether or not the language is endangered, and makes a prognosis about its future. Assisting the reader through this rather dense work is a list of the abbreviations of the 34 organizations and political bodies referenced throughout the work as well as frequent tables that depict timelines and break down the information into bite-sized pieces.

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