• Gaetano BERRUTO (Turin, Italie)
    Multilingualism and European politics. Presentation
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 5-9
  • Augusto CARLI (Modène, Italie)
    Multilingualism and minority languages in European language policy
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 59-79

    This article deals with the language policy measures recently adopted by the European Union (EU) and aims to highlight some problematic and contradictory points. The analysis focuses on two specific aspects: a) maintenance and protection of minority languages, and b) 'work languages' institutional regime. A critical interpretation of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (1998) allows for the identification, discussion and evaluation of both the positive and negative aspects which characterise this legal document. Theoretical and practical contradictions become more evident when 'work languages' are considered within the Institutions since the rich European multilingualism is sacrificed to an embarrassing English monopoly.

  • Silvia DAL NEGRO (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)
    Language contact and dying languages
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 47-58

    This article deals with language death phenomena within a wider framework of languages in contact. A few relevant issues of language death research are critically discussed in order to focus on the peculiarities of this phenomenon as opposed to other outcomes of contact, such as the development of pidgin and creole languages. In particular, the article deals with the role of imperfect native speakers in communities characterized by language shift, with the interaction between language-external and language-internal aspects, and with the kinds of structural consequences that are expected in long-lasting attrition phases. Finally, an emphasis on environmental factors to explain linguistic phenomena is advocated.

  • Mathieu DEVINAT (Sherbrooke, Canada)
    Bijuridism and bilingualism in Canada: ideals under tension
    2011, Vol. XVI-1, pp. 33-50

    Since its creation in 1867, Canada is founded on a political compromise between two founding nations that gave an equal status to distinct legal traditions both expressed in two official languages. In order to fulfill these ideals, however, Canadian jurists must assimilate two legal cultures and languages, an expertise far from reach for everyday citizens, and probably even from a majority of jurists themselves! This paper aims to present in a critical manner the legal discourse surrounding the implementation of bilingualism and bijuridism in Canadian law. In our opinion, the Canadian example highlights the methodological and terminological challenges related to the recognition of two languages and legal traditions within the same legal order.

  • Rita FRANCESCHINI (Sarrebruck, Allemagne)
    Why do linguists need multilingual speakers?
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 105-124

    In light of the vast number of publications dedicated to the different aspects of multilingualism, one might wonder whether the analyses carried out so far have had an impact on the development of the theory of language in general. Are they merely the latest trend (due to intelligible and undisputable social reasons) or rather a real challenge for linguistics? This article first examines the terminology and then tries to answer these questions with eleven theses. It also highlights the importance of developing a linguistic theory based on multilingualism and the significance of the applied concepts for the analysis regarding the acquisition of a second (or even a third or fourth) language. The cognitive bases as well as the contemporary or separate handling of various languages on the mental level are discussed.

  • Mathieu GUIDÈRE (Toulouse 2)
    Multilingual humanitarian mediation in conflict management
    2011, Vol. XVI-1, pp. 51-62

    In the framework of humanitarian mediation, multilingual communication has a strong cultural component. This article begins by situating the Other in a global fashion, and then goes on to view ways in which a balance of perception can be established between those involved by working out a precise, rigorous diagnosis to shed light on the conceptions, feelings and intentions of all concerned, illustrated by several examples. Amongst the tools used, mention should be made of distancing, decentring, intercultural competence and Natural Semantic Metalanguage.

  • Georges LÜDI (Bâle, Suisse)
    Towards a linguistic theory of the competence of a multilingual speaker
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 125-135

    Individual and social multilingualism are the default case and exploit in an optimal way the human language faculty; on the contrary, a monolingual individual is more and more handicapped in the modern world. However, because of numerous and ancient prejudices, most linguistic models and theories don't care about multilingualism. Based on a holistic approach of plurilingual competences, different ways of getting bilingual are distinguished in this paper and the question of the assessing plurilingual repertoires is discussed. A particular focus lies on bilingual speech. It is postulated that each theory of language should, to be valid, acknowledge the ways a plurilingual speaker/hearer exploits the totality of his or her linguistic resources for socially significant interactions in different forms of monolingual and plurilingual speech.

  • Peter Hans NELDE (Bruxelles, Belgique)
    The new multilingualism in the EU and the need for a language policy based on contact
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 31-46

    If a language policy, inspired by at least some issues of the New Multilingualism, is to be Europeanised, language policy makers should accept (1) that multilingualism is "normal", monolingualism is exceptional ; (2) that multilingualism is interdependently connected with factors such as economy, politics, sociale welfare and education ; (3) that not one but several language policies may be possible and necessary. Language policy is not a uniform, centralistic or hierarchic device and must be based on a non-discriminatory subsidiarity principle, perhaps in connection with a language-planning coordination centre which would encourage further research, take care of the application of research results and try to support and ameliorate the situation of those 50-70 million minority speakers within the European Union who could, with their multilingual and multicultural heritage, develop an attitude to a better understanding and to the neutralisation of conflicts. In such a way European language policies are not only possible but imperative.

  • Vincenzo ORIOLES (Udine, Italie)
    Plurilingualism: interpretative models, terminology and institutional effects
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 11-30

    The present study deals with several questions related to the conceptual and applicative background of plurilingualism, a technical term which covers a group of phenomena connected with the simultaneous use of more than one language or language variety in the competence of one individual or in the repertoire of a linguistic community. First of all the Author presents a thorough analysis of the evolution of the cultural sensibility in front of a theme which, although removed in the past, is nowadays a central issue in scientific researches. An in-depth study of the notion of plurilingualism throughout the years as well as an analysis of other technical terms strictly connected follow in order to understand the institutional effects due to this renewed interest in the phenomenon. Finally a description of scientific activities is presented and research carried out in the field of plurilingualism by the International Centre of Plurilingualism of the University of Udine is then presented.

  • Patrick RENAUD (Paris 3)
    Taking action on languages and language situations: looking at the practice
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 81-94

    Bilingualism can be approached either according to a traditional approach of languages as separately identifiable, describable and usable objects or through the observation of ordinary speech practices, i.e. language in action, analysis viewing languages as socially-constructed, unstable objects, which can be variably categorized according to practical ends in the course of action. This approach has been chosen as the framework of the present paper for the analysis of bilingual interactions. Two kinds of observations are made: far from being merely analyzable in terms of code-switching, bilingual interaction has to be described in finer strata, from linguistic sub-systems to ways of speaking and addressing participants in which discourse is jointly realized through the adjustment of such resources to the on-going action. Thus embodying languages in meaning-making social practices leads to questioning drastically reducing and lethal models for language planning which are founded on academic approaches of bilingualism.

  • Claire SAILLARD (Paris 7)
    Multilingual actors at work: a linguistic community?
    2000, Vol. V-1, pp. 15-24

    This paper aims to reexamine the sociolinguistic concept of "linguistic community", taking multilingual work situations into account, in order to determine whether such a sociolinguistic concept can be defined without reference to the concrete situations where interactions are realized. The study shows that the norms governing linguistic uses and interpretations in a given multilingual work setting do not necessarily correspond to the norms that prevail in the multilingual society at large. The work setting should thus be defined as a socialization setting, where linguistic norms are negotiated in a dynamic process.

  • Claire SAILLARD (Paris 7)
    The sociolinguistic situation in Taiwan
    1998, Vol. III-1, pp. 87-99

    The languages spoken in Taiwan belong partly to the Austronesian linguistic family, and partly to the Chinese languages. The article deals with the state of standardization of the written languages. Besides, the historical origin and the differential status of the Austronesian and Han ethnic groups in the Taiwanese society are described. Language vitality is linked to the social characteristics of the ethnic groups. Finally, the question is raised whether multilingualism can be officially accepted.

  • Mario SQUARTINI (Turin, Italie)
    Multilingualism and language didactics: applications of the Aspect Hypothesis
    2004, Vol. IX-2, pp. 95-104

    In this article some results of Second Language Acquisition research are tentatively applied to the education of foreign language teachers, who are becoming more and more aware of the 'plurilinguistic' coexistence of learner varieties in classroom settings. In dealing with the acquisition of Tense-Aspect morphology in Romance languages major attention is paid to the interaction between aspectual value and Aktionsart (lexical aspect), pointing out some protypical examples that could contribute to enhance the metalinguistic competence of teachers.

  • Elwys STEFANI (DE) (Bâle, Suisse)
    Translation activities in multilingual working sessions
    2000, Vol. V-1, pp. 25-42

    Plurilingual face-to-face collaboration becomes increasingly important in the academic world, due to the rapid development of international networks. One means for managing plurilingual encounters is informal oral translation, carried out by participants when the need arises. A conversation analysis of translation sequences in scientific meetings shows that researchers translate not only to establish intercomprehension, but also in order to emphasize elements of discourse and to state argumentative positions. Rather than being a mere transposition from one language into another, translation thus shapes the contents being developed. Moreover, it allows a description of some form of exploitation of linguistics resources in a particular social activity.

  • Simon TAYLOR (Paris-Diderot)
    The European Union and National Legal Languages: an Awkward Partnership?
    2011, Vol. XVI-1, pp. 105-118

    The harmonisation of the laws of Member States in various areas of private law constitutes an important element of the European Union integration process. The principal legislative mechanism used to achieve this harmonisation is the directive. Effective harmonisation of national laws can only be achieved if the Community legislation is applied in the same way in the different national legal systems. Many of the challenges in ensuring a harmonised application of community legislation are connected to issues of legal language. Amongst other examples, this paper will use the European directive on product liability (la responsabilité du fait des produits défectueux) as an illustration of the various language issues raised and the solutions available to ensure an effective level of harmonisation. This will be done through a study of the English and French versions of the directive, and by considering the experience of the implementation of the provisions of the directive in French and English law.