Re: [langue-fr] L'anglais est-il une langue universelle ?

From: Tex Texin (
Date: Wed Dec 20 2000 - 15:26:05 EST

ok, but why is this pertinent to this list and what is it you
are asking Unicode to do or stop doing?


"Alain LaBonté " wrote:
> À 11:13 2000-12-20 -0500, John Cowan a écrit:
> >Alain LaBonté [in fact, not me] wrote:
> >[author unknown]
> > > Is English the best marketing and communication tool?
> [John]
> >This diatribe would perhaps have more force (though not be
> >as widely intelligible) were it written in something other
> >than English.
> [author unknown]
> > > 70% of
> > > the world population has no knowledge of it
> [John]
> >Reliable figures in this field are notoriously hard to come by,
> >but I suspect this one is inflated.
> [author unknown]
> > > From 1880 up to the second world war, multilingualism - not
> > > monolinguism - was the rule. Every participant would present
> > > his work in his own native tongue.
> [John]
> >Now this is definitely inflated. It is notorious that 19th
> >century Russian science was conducted almost entirely in German,
> >with honorable exceptions. And the participants were
> >restricted to Western European nations almost entirely,
> >avery different situation from today's.
> [author unknown]
> > > The new language Gestapo that patrols the Internet to blast traces of
> > > languages
> > > other than English,
> [John]
> >Now this is both silly and offensive, in addition to invoking
> >Godwin's law ("when the Nazis are mentioned, the
> >debate is over").
> >
> >I yield to no one in my enthusiasm for America-bashing, but to
> >compare intellectual arrogance with political imperialism,
> >state terror, and the physical extermination of whole peoples
> >is going much too far.
> >
> >--
> >There is / one art || John Cowan <>
> >no more / no less ||
> >to do / all things ||
> >with art- / lessness \\ -- Piet Hein
> [Alain] Btw this text is not from me (I still try to know who is its author).
> That said, what you say about the Godwin's law (thanks for the
> reference, I had not heard about it) is absolutely of age in Québec these
> days (you know, somebody who is not using terms that are "toitally and
> dogmatically politically correct" here is being told names and considered a
> nazi, to the point where innocents are condemned for just telling the bare
> truth even with nuances. I will skip this discussion as this would lead us
> too far, as you say.
> To come back to the text I posted, I think one should make abstraction
> of the details and consider it is giving us a quite accurate portrait of
> reality.
> Considering what you contest, if you say that the figure of 70% of the
> world population having no knowledge of English is inflated, I must say
> that you probably don't live on the same planet where I live... Just as an
> indication, Québec, a 7.5-million-people island of French speakers which is
> surrounded by an ocean of monolithically English-speaking community of 300
> million users of this language public-wise (I mean outside of homes), does
> not speak English (at least not enough to understand a simple question on
> the phone and answer it) in a proportion of approximately two thirds. And
> all these people -- we are perhaps among the most TV-cabled people -- have
> access to all American broadcast TV networks, online, as we share the
> Eastern North American Time zone. If these people, so, who are exposed all
> the time to an English-speaking sea, have this profile, I personally can
> imagine that a figure of 70% of the world not having a knowledge of English
> appears to me underevaluated, on the contrary of what you say.
> Alain LaBonté
> Québec

According to Murphy, nothing goes according to Hoyle.
Tex Texin                      Director, International Business      +1-781-280-4271 Fax:+1-781-280-4655
Progress Software Corp.        14 Oak Park, Bedford, MA 01730 #1 Embedded Database

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