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  #1  
Old Posted Aug 16, 2019, 11:42 PM
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Odds of French language growth/revival in Louisiana cities?

Obviously the situation is not the same as in French Canada (Quebec, New Brunswick or even Francophone areas in other regional parts of Canada) with official government support, but do you think Louisiana French can either maintain itself or grow in the near to long term future in similar ways?

Do people moving to any of Louisiana's cities (I'm guessing the bigger ones probably not, but maybe those in smaller ones) ever learn French to fit in to the locals?

Or do you think the French language influence in Louisiana is destined to decline, or at least only be maintained at a "token", symbolic level, rather than living language of a large proportion of the masses, like how relatively few in Ireland really want to speak Irish fluently instead of English but still use its words and names on streets and places proudly?
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 12:26 AM
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if the fate of missouri french is any indication, the future is bleak. we had native french speakers until the second world war.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miss...ch?wprov=sfti1
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  #3  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 1:24 AM
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If Louisiana can attract immigrants from France or the Francophone countries in Africa, Haiti, etc, it may be able to retain that nature. But I don’t see that happening anytime soon. The Mississippi hinterlands as a whole are not as popping as they were a century ago.
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  #4  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 1:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jd3189 View Post
If Louisiana can attract immigrants from France or the Francophone countries in Africa, Haiti, etc, it may be able to retain that nature. But I don’t see that happening anytime soon. The Mississippi hinterlands as a whole are not as popping as they were a century ago.
This kind of thing happened in Quebec, where now a flow of Francophone immigrants is helping sustain the culture (well aside from internal growth of the language being strong), unlike in the past. Historically, Quebecois, Acadians etc. actually emigrated away into the US (into New England particularly), thus French Canada actually lost people from emigration, not gained them. And historically, in places like Montreal, some immigrants like Italians, Greeks etc. would assimilate to English-speaking culture in Canada, not French, so that immigration took away or diluted French influence. This changed with the politics of the post 60s, 70s etc.

Now, people from France, Haiti and Francophone African countries helps immigration actually start adding to French influence in Quebec, not taking away from it.

I'm guessing, Louisiana or particular big cities like New Orleans, would have to undergo some similar shift where people moving there add to, rather than take away from the French influence.

I don't know if immigrants to Louisiana in the past like Italians ever tried to learn French or try and share some common ground with the Francophone locals, but I wonder if any would today.

According to this source, for Louisiana "The top countries of origin for immigrants were Mexico (14.5 percent of immigrants), Honduras (14.4 percent), Vietnam (12.8 percent), India (4.1 percent), and Cuba (3.8 percent)."

So not really Haiti or any majorly large-scale Francophone countries in there, although I wonder if from French Indochina, any Vietnamese immigrants who knew French coming to Louisiana ever tried to speak it with the locals to find common ground?

https://www.americanimmigrationcounc...s-in-louisiana
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  #5  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 3:03 AM
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Odds are very low of a revival of French in Louisiana.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langua..._United_States

In addition, immigrants coming to America aren't coming from native French speaking nations in large volumes.

Quote:
As of 2011, there were an estimated 150,000 to 200,000 people in Louisiana who speak French. By comparison, there were an estimated one million native French-speakers in Louisiana in about 1968. The dialect is now at risk of extinction as children are no longer taught it formally in schools.

Many question whether the Louisiana French language will survive another generation. Some residents of Acadiana are bilingual though, having learned French at home and English in school. Currently, Louisiana French is considered an endangered language.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louisiana_French
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  #6  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 6:46 AM
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lol. How about "zero"? Even in Quebec it's not that easy.

On a somewhat related note, I'm somewhat considering a second home in Charleston or Savannah or New Orleans, and as someone who's a francophone, the idea that maybe I could sometimes use my language if I picked the latter is not something that I find plausible. (Thus, not a criterion.)

Maybe a few generations ago, it would be different, and the Sunbelt francophone enclaves of Florida could have gone there instead (people like me), if some sort of critical mass was there already. But now, forget it.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 11:24 AM
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Hilarious!

The most commonly spoken language in New Orleans (other than English) is probably Vietnamese. The city is also attracting many immigrants from Vietnam and their influence is starting to blend into the culture and food.
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  #8  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 11:27 AM
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Also Irish (Galiec) is seeing a big resurgence in Ireland as it's taught in elementary schools. I believe there are also Galiec only television and radio stations. There are at least a couple rural counties where you will be hard pressed to find anything in English.
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  #9  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C. View Post
Hilarious!

The most commonly spoken language in New Orleans (other than English) is probably Vietnamese. The city is also attracting many immigrants from Vietnam and their influence is starting to blend into the culture and food.
Top 10 languages spoken at home in America:

Quote:
According to the ACS in 2017, the most common languages spoken at home by people aged five years of age or older are as follows:

English only – 239 million
Spanish – 41 million
Chinese (including Mandarin and Cantonese) – 3.5 million
Tagalog (including Filipino) – 1.7 million
Vietnamese – 1.5 million
Arabic – 1.2 million
French – 1.2 million
Korean – 1.1 million
Russian – 0.94 million
German – 0.92 million
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langua..._United_States
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 1:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
lol. How about "zero"? Even in Quebec it's not that easy.

On a somewhat related note, I'm somewhat considering a second home in Charleston or Savannah or New Orleans, and as someone who's a francophone, the idea that maybe I could sometimes use my language if I picked the latter is not something that I find plausible. (Thus, not a criterion.)

Maybe a few generations ago, it would be different, and the Sunbelt francophone enclaves of Florida could have gone there instead (people like me), if some sort of critical mass was there already. But now, forget it.
in the case of both missouri and louisiana, french decline in the principle city preceded rural areas by many decades, if not a century. i’ve never heard french or franglish in new orleans that i can recall.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 4:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Sun Belt View Post
Top 10 languages spoken at home in America:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langua..._United_States
I'm not sure what you're trying to accomplish by posting national-level statistics. If you post a list specific to metro New Orleans, that would've been helpful to conversation. I suspect Vietnamese is either second or third most spoken language at home for New Orleans. French is way down the list.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 5:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C. View Post
I'm not sure what you're trying to accomplish by posting national-level statistics. If you post a list specific to metro New Orleans, that would've been helpful to conversation. I suspect Vietnamese is either second or third most spoken language at home for New Orleans. French is way down the list.
Scroll all the way back to post #5 and you’ll see the drop in Louisiana French.

The US stats are there to show that French is not a common language in America.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 6:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C. View Post
Hilarious!

The most commonly spoken language in New Orleans (other than English) is probably Vietnamese. The city is also attracting many immigrants from Vietnam and their influence is starting to blend into the culture and food.
Yeah, I am trying to imagine more than one out of every 100 or so New Orleans residents having even rudimentary French language skills. Most of those that have such skills got them by taking French as a language course in high school or college. Cajun French is mostly not a factor.

Here's a breakdown by Parish. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ing_population

Last edited by austlar1; Aug 17, 2019 at 6:20 PM.
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  #14  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 6:19 PM
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Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
lol. How about "zero"? Even in Quebec it's not that easy.
This is exactly what I was going to type.

Quebec tries with every fiber of their being to keep the French going and still struggles.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 7:02 PM
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Sounds like xenophobes up there.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 7:24 PM
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Sounds like xenophobes up there.
Oui,oui, we voted in a president to build us a wall, y'all.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 7:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Centropolis View Post
in the case of both missouri and louisiana, french decline in the principle city preceded rural areas by many decades, if not a century. i’ve never heard french or franglish in new orleans that i can recall.
I sought old timers on purpose (and I got directed to this one specific social event on one given evening) while spending time in Lafayette, Louisiana in ~2004 and did find a few very old people who spoke some very weird French and had some short conversations with them.

I figured at the time that later in my life, this wouldn't be possible anymore (and I suppose I was correct; it's been a while since I've been in the area but none of these people are likely to be around anymore, 15+ years later) so I'm glad I did. Pretty unique experience.

Pretty sure I've shared that anecdote already on SSP, whenever this sort of discussion comes up
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 8:04 PM
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When I lived in Lafayette I still heard French like 6 years ago, but only in small coastal towns from old people. Wish it would come back though.
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Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 9:09 PM
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When every LSU fan thinks "Geaux" is pronounced "go," you know the future of French in Louisiana is bleak.
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  #20  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2019, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
I sought old timers on purpose (and I got directed to this one specific social event on one given evening) while spending time in Lafayette, Louisiana in ~2004 and did find a few very old people who spoke some very weird French and had some short conversations with them.

I figured at the time that later in my life, this wouldn't be possible anymore (and I suppose I was correct; it's been a while since I've been in the area but none of these people are likely to be around anymore, 15+ years later) so I'm glad I did. Pretty unique experience.

Pretty sure I've shared that anecdote already on SSP, whenever this sort of discussion comes up
In the late 1960s and early 70s there were one or two low power AM radio stations in Cajun Country that broadcast mostly in Cajun French. It was an oddity even back then. I am sure those stations disappeared with the rest of AM radio. I used to tune in sometimes driving from NO to Texas.
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