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The Fall of Language in the Age of English$
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Minae Mizumura

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231163026

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231163026.001.0001

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From Par Avion to Via Air Mail

From Par Avion to Via Air Mail

The Fall of French

(p.47) 2. From Par Avion to Via Air Mail
The Fall of Language in the Age of English

Minae Mizumura

, Mari Yoshihara, Juliet Winters Carpenter
Columbia University Press

This chapter explores how the English language supplanted the French language in becoming the most dominant language. It first looks into how the French language became the most revered language in Europe by recalling the reign of King Louis XIV in the seventeenth century. During this period, the French language became the lingua franca of the European ruling class for centuries. However, the end of World War II saw the USA becoming the world's greatest power. Minae Mizumura expresses how the French influence in Japan waned as English became the more common second language for the masses, by describing the difference of Japanese students who studied both languages. She saw that those who studied English did so with the purpose of mastering a particular subject, while other students went to France with the sole purpose of learning French and for simply being in France.

Keywords:   English language, French language, dominant language, King Louis XIV, lingua franca, World War II, USA, Minae Mizumura, Japan

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