Batman slapping Robin for improper French form
Olivia Walsh Seminar: Defending the French language: from ‘attacks’ on Canadian French in the 19th century to Twitter spats in the 21st
12 pm - 1:30 pm
French Department Library (4229 Dwinelle)

In this seminar, we will discuss the concepts of prescriptivism and purism, which involve recommending or condemning certain language usages based on a belief that there is a right and a wrong way to speak and write. We will then examine a sample of Canadian-French texts from the nineteenth century and a corpus of French tweets from the twenty-first century to determine how these concepts are enacted in practice, looking in particular at the discourse strategies used to portray language attitudes. We will compare the samples to discuss what has changed over time and what has stayed the same.