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Succesfully Multi-lingual Nations

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Keirador, Aug 14, 2005.

  1. Dann

    Dann Green bug

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    Yes. In the 3 northeast provinces.

    Some even still know which banner their ancestors belonged to.
     
  2. Marla_Singer

    Marla_Singer United in diversity

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    We cannot destroy a language by force. That has been tested with Canadian French speakers (Acadians, Quebec), it has been tested in the Soviet Union (Chechnyans, Kirghizis, Uzbekhs, Kazakhs, etc...) and it has never been successful.

    All the examples where a language has taken over another one in History has been examples where the people have switched their language voluntarily. For instance, we can think about Louisiana. Better examples are the spreading of French and British in the whole Africa, or the spreading of Spanish in Latin America, even in countries which majority of American natives such as Guatemala or Bolivia. In the case of France, it was a multilingual (and not simply bilingual) kingdom at the 18th century... but it was then hardly a nation. The French nationality is born once the whole Europe declared war on France right after the revolution. It's been confirmed by the Napoleon wars (recruits coming from everywhere to the battlefields because of conscription). And finally, it became widespread and undisputable during the 3rd republic.

    If all the languages have disappeared, it's mainly because people considered them as less modern and less useful than the French language. In the 19th century, the widespread feeling was : "why bother talking our local dialect which I can speak only with my 2 neighbours when French allows me to work everywhere in the country and get richer ?". That's been true in Brittany, in Auvergne, in the Midi, in Provence, in Flanders, in Alsace... even in Corsica. We may not forgotten that those languages were very specific. There were several provençals for instance and not simply one. Due to its generalization, French were seen as the necessary tool to become modern and rich... and the rural dialects were seen as backward.

    It's not truely different than what happened in Germany, where the hochdeutsch has superceded all other Germanic languages. Of course, the case of France is more disturbing because all the languages weren't of the same linguistical group (Britton was Celtic, Alsacian and Flemish were Germanic...) ; however the phenomenon remains the same.

    So no, France didn't make disappeared its minor languages by force... and not even simply because of an enforced French teaching. For example, the Belarusian dictator Lukachenko has banned the teaching of Belarusian in favor of Russian. People are resisting and schools in Belarusian have spread in clandestinity. I doubt Belarusian will disappear if it's considered as a matter of national identity in the hearts of Belarusians.

    Once again, languages are so tightly linked with culture that it's absolutely impossible to enforce one language on another if the cultural assimilation isn't accepted.
     
  3. kronic

    kronic Deity

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    That can't be bad though. :p

    As for Belgium: I'm following the developments quite closely but I wonder if it would really be a good idea to create two small states. I also wonder what it would mean for the EU.
     
  4. Marla_Singer

    Marla_Singer United in diversity

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    What about the Netherlands ? :D

    People talk Dutch, Flemish, Frisian over there. ;)
    Of course Dutch tends to outclass all other languages, but still, the Netherlands have never done anything against its minorities languages.
     
  5. Marla_Singer

    Marla_Singer United in diversity

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    Well, it could be a good idea if there weren't two main issues. First, Wallons don't want to become independent from Flanders (most considers "Wallonia" as an independent state as meaningless). Second, what would Brussels become in case of a split ? 90% of people in Brussels speak French but the city is located in the Flanders. That's a tricky issue.
     
  6. Hakim

    Hakim Parasocial

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    I think bilingual countries will have problems monolingual countries doesn't (mono as in a having a majority and official language). Two mentalities will take shape as they have slightly less communication between the language groups than within them. Then there nees to be various laws to balance and keep the both groups in check, or one of them will complain.

    Bilinguality could be a way to keep a country together that otherwise might split up, though.

    It sounds like a good idea to offically divide Belgium in two parts where the northern part joins The Netherlands while the south join France. It's an opportunity for all involved. Brussels goes to the highest bidder.
     
  7. Marla_Singer

    Marla_Singer United in diversity

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    Flemish people don't want to join their Northern neighbour. People living in Brussels would never accept to be annexed by Flanders having Antwerp as capital city.
     
  8. SonicX

    SonicX Emperor

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    In that case, if Brussels would be Flemish after succession, it would also be the capital.
    There are more people however who'd like to make Brussels into a Brussels DC, a small independant capital state for Europe. I also rather back that idea.

    But for those who believe a split is bad, then you have no idea about what's going on. Not having to spend 11 billion euro's a year on a basket case region that's unwilling to free it's market and invest in the future would be great... it would drastically boost our economy would is needed in a time like this.
    Flanders has a future alone ... alone, it is a rich as Switzerland.
    Wallonie should be annexed by France though, perhaps the French are more willing to pay for a stubborn child who won't grow up.
     
  9. Marla_Singer

    Marla_Singer United in diversity

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    It's a matter of democracy. You may accept it or not, but if a large part of Belgian people think differently than you, you have to accept this as it is. Of course if the majority of Flemish people would like better to form their own country, there's no reason for them to not become independent.

    However, I must say that I don't like at all people talking in such a way. You're flaming for nothing.
     
  10. Xen

    Xen Magister

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    primarilly because its canada and belgium ;)
     
  11. SonicX

    SonicX Emperor

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    Well, I'm studying politicial sciences in the university of Leuven, so I follow politics closely.

    What bugs me so much is that the Walloons keeop voting on the socialist party, the party which has literally destroyed their region by keeping taxes incredibly high and by supporting the long lost iron industries, instead of invest in a free market and make Wallonia more attractive to new investors.
    No, they'd rather vote socialists, who's only goal is to keep the cash flow from Flanders going ... what we pay, they don't have to.

    But in the eyes of a Flemings, it is not understandable how that region still has not recovered from the closing and collapse of the coal and iron industries. Every other region in the neighborhood that were dependant on those industries have long recovered and specialized in something different.
    Why do the Walloons stay behind ?
    Why don't they want to be more self sustaining and why don't have the same worker mentality ?
    Why is their corruption so high ?
    Why don't they try to help themselves and get that 18 % unemployment rate down ?

    After years or living in one country with a people I cannot comprehend to the slightest fashion, I may have developed a grunt against Francophones ... I'm sorry about that, but for me, the situation has hit it's boiling point ...
     
  12. Stapel

    Stapel FIAT 850 coupé

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    Flemmish is the same as Dutch. At best it is a dialect.
    And nobody in the Netherlands speaks Flemmish...

    And I think more people speak Turkish here, than Frisian..... Which is only a language according to the Frisians.....
     
  13. Stapel

    Stapel FIAT 850 coupé

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    Belgium doesn't make sene, Marla.
    There is close to nothing that links the Flemmish to the Walloons.
     
  14. sysyphus

    sysyphus So they tell me

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    Canada and Belgium are not funny, we are witty. :)
     
  15. Savage Discipil

    Savage Discipil A-Rod for MVP

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    you guy's are neither.
     
  16. AceChilla

    AceChilla Goedheiligman

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    Flanders can join us, then we just invade Brussels, so that problem is also fixed.

    Just making a small effort to unite Europe, one step at a time :)
     
  17. The Last Conformist

    The Last Conformist Irresistibly Attractive

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    As I use to say, Belgium are the bits that are so messed up that neither the NL nor France wanted it.
     
  18. SonicX

    SonicX Emperor

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    Do want to make me angry or something ;)
    Flanders definately has a lot of potential and if Flanders would want to join the Netherlands, the Dutch would not say not. (In fact, the Dutch republicans are still a bit angry at the monarchy for losing Belgium :crazyeye: )

    We have wonderful assets in Flanders :
    - Very good worker mentality and production rate
    - Perfect location (center of Europe, crossing of the 2 largest European highways are in Ghent)
    - Proximity to Londen, Amsterdam, Paris and the German Ruhr area and Rheinland.
    - The port of Antwerp
    - A very good educational system (this is a domain of the regional governement)
    - A high nominal GDP of 40 000 $ per capita (Netherlands 38 000, United Kingdom 38 000, France 36 000, Germany 35 000)
    - A budget surplus of 14 % to repay debts with
    - Able to deal with aging of the population IF the annual 11 billion $ transfers to the south come to a halt.

    Our major setbacks :
    - A high national debt of over 80 % of GDP which is almost totally being repaid by Flanders at the moment.
    - The union movement is still too strong, which is keeping some investors away.
    - High income taxes, gasoline prices and empoyer's taxes.
     
  19. The Last Conformist

    The Last Conformist Irresistibly Attractive

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    Yes. I would have thought that obvious.
     
  20. SonicX

    SonicX Emperor

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    Oh ... well, I'm bad at understanding irony ...
    Stupid Asperger syndrome ...
     

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