In Defense of French: Ten Reasons to Learn the Language Part Two

Category: Language

Let’s continue exploring the numerous values of the language of love. We know there are many Francophiles in the world. We understand that speaking French will help us network with them. We know that it will enable us to speak cuisine and wine fluently. We saw that French is spoken on virtually every continent and that French colonization planted the seeds so that it would flourish across the globe. Why else should we study the language of Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Christian Dior, Gerard Depardieu and Nicolas Sarkozy?

  1. French is the language of philosophers, composers and artists. Descartes. De Bussy. Monet. As a general rule, the richer your culture in the arts, the more discussion material you will have in your tool box. If you market your services and products to countries where the humanities are important (in Asia, the humanities are experiencing a resurgence), art and culture become necessary conversation points. If you have not the vaguest notion as to when the Renaissance occurred, or who Cézanne was, you may find yourself in a predicament when the gaps in your culture hinder your ability to woo the client, especially when catering to Europeans. Learning French naturally involves studying culture and history – which will enable you to connect with culture buffs without feeling ill-equipped.

  2. Our neighbors to the North speak French. The Quebecois are often overlooked in the Francophone world, but there are nearly 8 million inhabitants in this French-speaking province of Canada. “Don’t they speak English?”, you may ask. Well yes and no. Though many in Montreal are bilingual and speak an English that is lightly seasoned with a French accent, many outside of the major tourist destinations only speak French.  And the Quebecois are among the staunchest defenders of the French language, resisting English linguistic invasions to the point of translating ‘hot dog’ (“chien chaud”). Proximity to this French-speaking market makes it a cost-effective business trip destination. And French will always be an official language in Canada – and therefore an important language for North American business.

  3. French is important in politics. The French language is one of the UN’s five official languages, and France has one of the five permanent seats in the UN Security Council.  France is a major political and economic force – this ensures a promising future for the language.

  4. French is one of the most beautiful languages in the world.  According to Language Learning Advisor Survey, which rates the public’s perception of languages, it is second only to Italian as the most beautiful spoken language and is the third most beautiful written language, behind Arabic and Chinese.  You may find that speaking French transforms your very persona, giving you a touch of chic, of elegant sophistication that will set you apart from your competitors.

  5. Pourquoi pas?