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European Francophonie

The Social, Political and Cultural History of an International Prestige Language

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Edited By Vladislav Rjéoutski, Gesine Argent and Derek Offord

This volume examines the use of French in European language communities outside France from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century. The phenomenon of French language usage is explored in a wide variety of communities, namely Bohemian, Dutch, medieval English, German (Prussian), Italian, Piedmontese, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish. Each chapter offers unique insight into the existence of francophonie in a given language community by providing illustrations of language usage and detailed descriptions of various aspects of it. The volume as a whole explores such sociolinguistic matters as bilingualism and multilingualism, the use of French as a lingua franca and prestige language, language choice and code-switching, variations in language usage depending on class or gender, language attitudes and language education. The sociohistorical and sociocultural matters considered include the association of a variety of language with the court, nobility or some other social group; the function of French as a vehicle for the transmission of foreign cultures; and the role of language in the formation of identity of various kinds (national, social and personal).
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← 498 | 499 → HISTORICAL SOCIOLINGUISTICS

Studies on Language and Society in the Past

series editors

Nils LangerStephan ElspaßJoseph SalmonsWim Vandenbussche

The interdisciplinary field of Historical Sociolinguistics seeks to reveal the impact of language development on society and the role of individuals and society in the changing forms and usage of language. This book series is aimed at sociolinguists and social historians who are keen to publish studies on the social history of languages, the interaction of linguistic practices and society, and the sociological significance of linguistic variation with a historical dimension. The purpose of the series is to provide empirically supported studies that will challenge and advance current language historiographies, which often continue to present the history of particular languages as necessarily leading to the creation of a standard or prestige variety. Of particular interest are topics such as the following: language myths and language ideology, historical multilingualism and the formation of nation-states, the sociolinguistics of minority and regional languages, the rise of urban vernaculars, immigrants and their languages, the role of prescriptive grammarians, and the social history of pidgins and creoles.

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