Yet again, it seems the English language has come under fire from the French. Despite the amount of French words and phrases commonly used in the everyday English language, such as ‘café’, ‘entrepreneur’, ‘déjà vu’, ‘carte blanche’, ‘mousse’, ‘cul-de-sac’, ‘RSVP’ and ‘en suite’, to name a few, the French seem to overlook that fact when blaming other languages, particularly English, for having the audacity to encroach on theirs.

Calling For a Boycott

Michel Serres of the Académie française, the renowned organization which aims to regulate and protect the French language, seems to have a bee in his bonnet about the English interference with the purity of his country’s language. He has callously compared the amount of English words in adverts on the walls of Toulouse with the amount of German words used during the occupation, stating that the former far outweighs the latter. Apart from being insensitive, it could be said that Mr Serres is somewhat overreacting, having called for a boycott of all things advertised in English. He has called for the French to go on strike by refusing to buy any products which have English words in their advertising campaigns, or to watch any films at the cinema whose titles have not been translated from English.

While the French are rushing to claw back their identity, the English language is secure enough in itself to be able to appreciate its external influences and its ever evolving state. As the most widely used language in the world, it’s not hard to see why. N’est-ce pas?