Article published in:Variation in (Sub)standard language
Edited by Rob Belemans and Reinhild Vandekerckhove
[Belgian Journal of Linguistics 13] 1999
► pp. 1–11
The French Language in Belgium
In Praise of Difference
Abstract. Relying on recent sociolinguistic research, this paper questions some generally accepted ideas concerning the French spoken by Walloons and Brussels Francophones. In particular, it is shown that the observation of real linguistic usage does not allow one to postulate the existence of a variant like "Standard Belgian French", "Walloon French" or "Brussels French". Contrary to what is implied by naive collections of so-called "Belgicisms", any possible definition of "Belgian French" in terms of specific linguistic features is doomed to failure, because similar phenomena can be registered in other French-speaking areas. On the other hand, Walloons and Brussels Francophones often assume a kind of "identity by substraction" grounded on their own representation of " Belgian French" as a variant devoid of any normative legitimacy. Yet, it is argued here that sociolinguistic changes currently in progress will favour the emergence of an endogenous regional norm.
Published online: 01 January 2000
Cited by 2 other publications
Yzerbyt, Vincent, Valérie Provost & Olivier Corneille
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 07 april 2021. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.