. (ein_suender) wrote in linguaphiles,

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The Story of French

I'm currently reading The Story of French by Benoit et Barlow, which was recommended to me by someone in this community (though I can't remember who...)

Anyway, a couple things caught my attention and I thought I'd ask about them here, to see what the opinions here are...

From page 235:

In Louisiana, in New England, and in some communities in the Canadian West, many native francophones lost their capacity to conjugate verbs. For example, an anglicism such as Il faut watcher son français (you need to watch your French), inelegant as it is, is still structurally French. But Il faut watch son français (which we heard in Acadia) shows that the speaker hasn’t mastered the basic system of verb conjugation in French…these mistakes are often a clear indicator of imminent assimilation.

My question here is about the part in bold. Do you all agree/disagree with these statements? How do you feel about the general sentiments in the above paragraph? I’ve heard that non-Quebecois francophone Canadians are struggling with French not “picking up” with many younger people, but that’s the first example I’ve seen of a verb being used as though it’s English like that.

From page 315:

Most Algerians, Sengalese, Indians, and Polynesians are at least bilingual (not surprisingly, since only ten countries in the world, and very small ones at that, are classified as strictly monolingual).

Again, the bold part is what I have a question about. Which countries are these? I can guess that Iceland is one of them, but the other nine I don’t know off-hand. Liechtenstein, maybe? And the Vatican?

Grand merci beaucoup!

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