Interdisciplinary Contributions to Contemporary Cultural Debates
Edited By Gail K. Hart and Anke S. Biendarra
Division as Unity: Plurilingualism and Language Education in Europe
Glenn S. Levine
The grass is always greener
From the vantage point of the United States, Europe is often regarded by us “tongue-tied Americans,” as Congressman Paul Simon labeled us back in 1980, as the multilingual ideal that we should aspire to become. This view was echoed by candidate Barack Obama during a campaign event in Georgia in 2008, when he asserted:
It’s embarrassing when Europeans come over here, they all speak English, they speak French, they speak German. And then we go over to Europe, and all we can say is, ‘merci beaucoup.’ (Bacon)
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