Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In English it means a mangled combination of English and French, produced either by poor knowledge of one or the other language or for humorous effect. If one tries to speak French and fill in gaps in your knowledge with English words or false friends with their incorrect meaning, the result is Franglais. Or it may mean a diplomatic compromise such as UTC.
It should be remembered that the Norman invasion of England caused the native Anglo-Saxon to be reduced to the status of a linguistic substrate on to which Norman French was grafted, leading to modern English. Anglo-Saxon is called often Old English and modern English can be named similarly as Old Franglais.
- Ever afterwards the English have regarded a knowledge of French as a sign of supposed cultural superiority, naturally to be mocked.
- this 'chippiness' has been joined by sheer delight at a mélange two languages.
For the former tendency we have only to remember Chaucer's Prioress, who (he tells us) knew nothing of the French of Paris, but only that of Stratford-atte-Bowe ('Essex French'). We remember also the endless tedium of learning and boasting of French in English C18 and C19 novels.
An early literary example of the delight in mélange occurs in Robert Surtees' Jorrocks ' Jaunts and Jollities:
- "You shall manger cinque fois every day," said she; "cinque fois," she repeated.--"Humph!" said Mr. Jorrocks to himself, "what can that mean?--cank four--four times five's twenty--eat twenty times a day--not possible!" "Oui, Monsieur, cinque fois," repeated the Countess, telling the number off on her fingers--"Café at nine of the matin, déjeuner à la fourchette at onze o'clock, diner at cinque heure, café at six hour, and souper at neuf hour."
On a more rarefied level, Franglais can provide puns for more curious humorous effects.
- Moi aussi — I am an Australian.
- se marier — to become a Māori
- coupe de grass — lawn mower (play on "coup de grâce").
- ouate de phoque — cotton of seal (play on "what the f...").
- vieux motard que j'aimais — old motorcyclist that I loved (play on "mieux vaut tard que jamais" — better late than never).
- pas de deux — father of twins.
- J'accuse réception — The secretary did it.
- Je ne care pas — I don't care.
- Any of which can perhaps be followed with the apostrophe Pretentious? Moi?
Books published by Miles Kington include: Let's Parler Franglais, Let's Parler Franglais Again!, Parlez-vous Franglais?, Let's Parler Franglais One More Temps, The Franglais Lieutenant's Woman and Other Literary Masterpieces.
Another classic is Jean Loup Chiflet 's Sky My Husband! Ciel Mon Mari! which is a literal translation (and a correct one too, for comparison) of French into English. (The title might better have been translated as "Good Heavens! My Husband!").
In French (and sometimes so used in English), the term refers to the use of anglicisms (English words) for which there are perhaps more appropriate French equivalents. These anglicisms are often regarded as unwelcome imports. Plus, the term refers to nouns created on Anglo-Saxon roots, often by adding "ing" at the end of a popular word : un parking (a car park), un camping (a camp site), le marketing, le shampooing (the shampoo). For those who don't speak English, those words are true English nouns.
Franglais should not be confused with Quebec French, which has a number of longstanding borrowings from English as the result of the historical coexistence of two linguistic communities inside Quebec and especially the Montreal area. Similarly, English spoken by the anglophone minority in Quebec has borrowed certain Quebec French words such as dépanneur. These are permanent and longstanding features of the local dialect, often used by fluently bilingual speakers, rather than the incorrect speech improvised by any given individual user with poor knowledge of the other language. In this sense, the term "Franglais" is used as much in a European context as in Canada (except Quebec). However, the term Franglais is used in New Brunswick, Manitoba and some parts of northern Maine to refer to the mix of English and French spoken there, which is itself a longstanding dialect. This mix uses just about as much English as French.
After World War II, a backlash began in France over the increasing use of Franglais there. Corruption of the national language was perceived by some to be tantamount to a hijack of the fibre of the country itself.
During this period import of large amounts of American products had led to increasingly widespread use of some English phrases throughout French culture. Measures taken to slow this trend included government censorship of comic strips and financial support for the French film and French language dubbing industries.
- Engrish, Germish / Denglish, Dutch English, Spanglish, macaronic, Quebec French, globish
- cultural identity, cultural imperialism
- La petite lesson en Franglais
- I went to the market, mon p'tit panier sous mon bras, a song from the Quebecois Gilles Vigneault
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