How France battles to keep French alive at Olympics

How France battles to keep French alive at Olympics
The French language will remain a staple part of the Olympic Games, and it’s no easy task.

« Mesdames et messieurs – bienvenue à la cérémonie d’ouverture des Jeux Olympiques… »

Even if you don’t speak a word of French, you probably understand the above after coming across it (or something similar) at each Olympic Games opening ceremony.

French may no longer be considered a global international language or even the language of Europe after the rise and rise of English in recent decades, but it is still an official language of the Olympics – a legacy of the Frenchman who founded the games Pierre de Coubertin.

And French authorities are determined to make sure their language remains one of the official languages of the Olympic Games.

The organization, which boasts 57 member countries, has sent a delegate, known as the Grand Temoin (Great witness) to each Olympics since 2004 to monitor that the French language is actually being used for the athletes and spectators, a move introduced after French started to become less popular as the use of English soared.

At this year’s games in Rio, the job has gone to jazz saxophonist Manu Dibango of Cameroon, who is there to perform but also to oversee that amount of French on hand.

‘It’s a struggle each time’

He told the New York Times that he saw the job as « being the flag-bearer of the 300 million people around the world who speak French ».
Dibango is expected to closely monitor the level of French used on signage and announcements and produce a report afterwards. Early signs look good too, with the announcements for the opening ceremony made in English, Brazil’s national language Portuguese, and French.

Previous reports from other summer and winter games, however, have included complaints that some announcements weren’t in French, or that new sports came without sufficient French terminology.

Michaëlle Jean, the secretary general of the International organization of Francophonie, told the paper that the job of keeping the Olympics in French was « a struggle each time ».

« We must be there to make sure the French signs and documents and information are there. We have 3,000 athletes and a lot of people in the public from Francophone countries, » she said.

So should everything be in French?

Well, quite simply, yes (according to the rules, at least). The Olympic charter specifically states that the games have two official languages, English and French.

This rule is a result of the fact that the modern games were invented by a Frenchman, Pierre de Coubertin, but are no doubt in place as well considering the huge population of the world that speaks French.

If we forget the rules, however, one can only wonder if having everything in three languages is really necessary.

After all, there are more people in the world who speak Spanish (not to mention Mandarin, Hindi, and Arabic) than French – so surely they should get a look in somehow?

And as for the live broadcasts, many countries will have their own native-speaking correspondents on the microphone anyway, talking over the often lengthy announcements in French, English, and Portuguese.

So does French really still have a place at the Olympic Games? The jury is out on this one.

Vive la France, le français et l francophonie !!!!

 

Love Everywhere (Les Amoureux du Bout du Monde)

(English version below)
Les « amoureux du bout du monde », Cécile et Sébastien, tous deux danseurs ont vécu en 2013 une aventure extraordinaire autour de la planète !

En 6 mois, ils ont dansé le Swing dans 204 lieux paradisiaques autour du globe : du Carnival de Rio à la Statue de la Liberté, en passant par l’Amazonie, l’Argentine, le Parc Kruger en Afrique du Sud, ou encore le Taj Mahal en Inde.

== English version ==
Cecile and Sebastien are two Dance lovers who spent the last 6 months traveling and dancing West Coast Swing around the world !

SONGLIST from Pop Danthology :
1. Adele – « Set Fire To The Rain »
2. Adele – « Skyfall »
3. Alex Clare – « Too Close »
4. Calvin Harris feat. Ne-Yo – « Let’s Go »
5. Carly Rae Jepsen – « Call Me Maybe »
6. Cher Lloyd – « Want U Back »
7. Chris Brown – « Don’t Wake Me Up »
8. Chris Brown – « Turn Up The Music »
9. Christina Aguilera – « Your Body »
10. David Guetta feat. Chris Brown & Lil Wayne – « I Can Only Imagine »
11. David Guetta feat. Nicky Minaj – « Turn Me On »
12. David Guetta feat. Sia – « Titanium »
13. Demi Lovato – « Give Your Heart A Break »
14. Ellie Goulding – « Lights »
15. Enrique Iglesias feat. Sammy Adams – « Finally Found You »
16. Far East Movement feat. Justin Bieber – « Live My Life »
17. Flo Rida – « Whistle »
18. Flo Rida feat. Sia – « Wild Ones »
19. Fun. – « Some Nights »
20. Fun. feat. Janelle Monáe – « We Are Young »
21. Gotye feat. Kimbra – « Somebody That I Used To Know »
22. Gym Class Heroes feat. Neon Hitch – « Ass Back Home »
23. Jennifer Lopez feat. Pitbull – « Dance Again »
24. Jessie J – « Domino »
25. Justin Bieber feat. Big Sean – « As Long As You Love Me »
26. Justin Bieber – « Boyfriend »
27. Karmin – « Brokenhearted »
28. Katy Perry – « Part Of Me »
29. Katy Perry – « Wide Awake »
30. Kelly Clarkson – « Stronger »
31. Ke$ha – « Die Young »
32. LMFAO – « Sorry For Party Rocking »
33. Madonna feat. M.I.A. & Nicky Minaj – « Give Me All Your Luvin' »
34. Maroon 5 – « One More Night »
35. Maroon 5 feat. Wiz Khalifa – « Payphone »
36. Nelly Furtado – « Big Hoops (Bigger The Better) »
37. Ne-Yo – « Let Me Love You (Until You Learn To Love Yourself) »
38. Nicki Minaj – « Pound The Alarm »
39. Nicki Minaj – « Starships »
40. One Direction – « Live While We’re Young »
41. One Direction – « What Makes You Beautiful »
42. Owl City & Carly Rae Jepson – « Good Time »
43. P!nk – « Blow Me (One Last Kiss) »
44. Pitbull feat. Chris Brown – « International Love »
45. PSY – « Gangnam Style »
46. Rihanna – « Diamonds »
47. Rihanna – « Where Have You Been »
48. Rita Ora – « How We Do (Party) »
49. Swedish House Mafia – « Don’t You Worry Child »
50. Tyga – « Rack City »
51. Usher – « Climax »
52. Usher – « Scream »
53. The Wanted – « Glad You Came »
54. Will.I.Am feat. Eva Simons – « This is Love »
55. Zedd feat. Matthew Koma – « Spectrum »