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German in Europe: who cares? John Partridge University of Kent Canterbury.

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1 German in Europe: who cares? John Partridge University of Kent Canterbury

2 The pervasive influence of English 1 English vocabulary and structure are constantly invading the German language, for example in: – Advertising – Technology, especially IT – Newspapers – Jugendsprache

3 The pervasive influence of English 2 English is making territorial gains What or who is at fault? The English language or native speakers of German? Political and commercial expediency: –English as a fifth Swiss language –German universities e.g. Frankfurt/Oder offer degree programmes with English as a language of instruction –Science departments in German universities where teachers have an American or British PhD. –large German corporations e.g. BMW, Siemens conduct business in English

4 Some statistics and remarks (Clyne 1995) German is a language of intercultural communication German is second to Russian in the number of native speakers in Europe German’s communication radius is limited cf. (1995 figures): –English 320m across world –French 90m –Spanish 300m –All of these languages are widely spoken on several continents In 5 European countries German is the national language and has regional status in 3. German has sole official language status in 3 countries English has official status in only 2 European Countries, French in only 2

5 Die Osterweiterung European cultural organisations are turning towards the East: not cultural, but commercial imperialism? –British Council has reduced its presence in Germany from five offices to one –DAAD has reduced its offices in GB from three to one

6 The position of German in Europe 1 The German Language in the Context of a European Language Policy German is mainly a European language The future of the German language will be decided in Europe, for German is first and foremost a European language. German was not disseminated around the globe by colonialism. Yet in Europe, it outstrips every other language apart from Russian in terms of its number of native speakers (95 million in Europe, 120 million worldwide) and the total number of countries where it is an official language (seven). (www.goethe.de/kue/lit/dos/dds/en htm)

7 The pervasive influence of English 1 English vocabulary and structure are constantly invading the German language, for example in: – Advertising – Technology, especially IT – Newspapers – Jugendsprache

8 The pervasive influence of English 2 English is making territorial gains What or who is at fault? The English language or native speakers of German? Political and commercial expediency: –English as a fifth Swiss language –German universities e.g. Frankfurt/Oder offer degree programmes with English as a language of instruction –Science departments in German universities where teachers have an American or British PhD. –large German corporations e.g. BMW, Siemens conduct business in English

9 The pervasive influence of English 2 English is making territorial gains What or who is at fault? The English language or native speakers of German? Political and commercial expediency: –English as a fifth Swiss language –German universities e.g. Frankfurt/Oder offer degree programmes with English as a language of instruction –Science departments in German universities where teachers have an American or British PhD. –large German corporations e.g. BMW, Siemens conduct business in English

10 Some statistics and remarks (Clyne 1995) German is a language of intercultural communication German is second to Russian in the number of native speakers in Europe German’s communication radius is limited cf. (1995 figures): –English 320m across world –French 90m –Spanish 300m –All of these languages are widely spoken on several continents In 5 European countries German is the national language and has regional status in 3. German has sole official language status in 3 countries English has official status in only 2 European Countries, French in only 2

11 Die Osterweiterung European cultural organisations are turning towards the East: not cultural, but commercial imperialism? –British Council has reduced its presence in Germany from five offices to one –DAAD has reduced its offices in GB from three to one

12 Die Osterweiterung European cultural organisations are turning towards the East: not cultural, but commercial imperialism? –British Council has reduced its presence in Germany from five offices to one –DAAD has reduced its offices in GB from three to one

13 The position of German in Europe 1 The German Language in the Context of a European Language Policy German is mainly a European language The future of the German language will be decided in Europe, for German is first and foremost a European language. German was not disseminated around the globe by colonialism. Yet in Europe, it outstrips every other language apart from Russian in terms of its number of native speakers (95 million in Europe, 120 million worldwide) and the total number of countries where it is an official language (seven). (www.goethe.de/kue/lit/dos/dds/en htm)

14 The position of German in Europe 1 The German Language in the Context of a European Language Policy German is mainly a European language The future of the German language will be decided in Europe, for German is first and foremost a European language. German was not disseminated around the globe by colonialism. Yet in Europe, it outstrips every other language apart from Russian in terms of its number of native speakers (95 million in Europe, 120 million worldwide) and the total number of countries where it is an official language (seven). (www.goethe.de/kue/lit/dos/dds/en htm)

15 Some statistics and remarks (Clyne 1995) German is a language of intercultural communication German is second to Russian in the number of native speakers in Europe German’s communication radius is limited cf. (1995 figures): –English 320m across world –French 90m –Spanish 300m –All of these languages are widely spoken on several continents In 5 European countries German is the national language and has regional status in 3. German has sole official language status in 3 countries English has official status in only 2 European Countries, French in only 2

16 Die Osterweiterung European cultural organisations are turning towards the East: not cultural, but commercial imperialism? –British Council has reduced its presence in Germany from five offices to one –DAAD has reduced its offices in GB from three to one

17 The position of German in Europe 1 The German Language in the Context of a European Language Policy German is mainly a European language The future of the German language will be decided in Europe, for German is first and foremost a European language. German was not disseminated around the globe by colonialism. Yet in Europe, it outstrips every other language apart from Russian in terms of its number of native speakers (95 million in Europe, 120 million worldwide) and the total number of countries where it is an official language (seven). (www.goethe.de/kue/lit/dos/dds/en htm)

18 The position of German in Europe 2 In the Council of Europe German is not an "official language", but merely a "working language", which denotes a lesser status here. In the politically more significant European Union, a "working language" enjoys higher status than an "official language". Of course, German, as the official language of three Member States (Germany, Austria and Luxembourg), is one of the official EU languages (of which there are currently 20, as of 1 May 2004). Article 6 of Council Regulation No 1 determining the languages to be used by the European Economic Community allows the institutions of the Community to stipulate which of the official languages are to be used as working languages in specific cases. Over time, these are likely to develop into Europe's official languages and, indeed, its lingua franca. Being one of them is therefore extremely important for the future of the German language.

19 The position of German in Europe 3 English and French are the EU's main working languages. German is also a recognised working language in key institutions such as the Commission and the Council of Ministers (also for informal meetings), but it is rarely used. Germany has been fighting to resist linguistic demotion for years. Among other things, this led to a clash with Finland during the Finnish Presidency in Autumn 1999, when it became apparent that Member States whose own language is not a working language generally prefer to use English as the sole working language. The status of German and even French has thus become more precarious, especially since EU enlargement. This situation prompted France and Germany to sign a joint "language directive" pledging mutual support in the field of language policy in July 2000.

20 German as a minority language in European states German is a recognised minority language in Eastern Belgium and South Tyrol, where it is also an official regional language It is also a recognised minority language in Denmark (Northern Schleswig), France (Alsace-Lorraine), Poland (Silesia), the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania. The European Bureau for Lesser Used Languages (EBLUL), which is funded by the Council of Europe and the EU, supports the efforts of the German-speaking minorities to defend their rights, which are defined in the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. These rights have been recognised by the signatory states; Only France, through its enactment of a constitutional law making French the only official language, has ruled out any ratification of the Charter. Nonetheless, France does permit the existence of bilingual schools in Alsace, which offer German as a teaching language. Recognition of German as a minority language is also important for the future of the German language.

21 Language policy in the EU Von der EU-Sprachenpolitik als solche zu sprechen, wäre beim momentanen Stand der Dinge verfehlt. Initiativen gestalten sich meist punktuell, ein Gesamtkonzept sprachlicher Bildung und sprachenpolitischer Regelungen gibt es nicht. Bekenntnisse zur Wahrung der Vielsprachigkeit sind dagegen zahlreich, in Realität macht sich aber eher eine Sprachhomogenisierung breit. (europa-digital.de/aktuell/dossier/sprachen/sprache2.shtml)europa-digital.de/aktuell/dossier/sprachen/sprache2.shtml Die EU-Sprachenpolitik sendet extrem widersprüchliche Signale aus: Gerade beim "Jahr der Sprachen" wurde oft trotz Mehrsprachigkeits-Rhetorik Vielsprachigkeit ausgeschlossen. So zum Beispiel in einem Projekt des Europäischen Fremdsprachenzentrums in Graz: Zum Europäischen Jahr der Sprachen waren Fremdsprachenlehrer aus aller Welt aufgerufen, sich an dem Projekt "Teachers of the Week" zu beteiligen. Auf der Homepage heißt es: "teachers of any language are invited to participate" - aber "submission of entries is only possible in the two languages English and French".

22 Germany's language policy In recent years, German politicians have focussed greater attention than before on the status of the German language in Europe (CDU/CSU’s Verbreitung, Förderung und Vermittlung der deutschen Sprache, of 3 April 2001,and Deutsch als Arbeitssprache der Europäischen Union, 17 February 2002) However the Federal Government’s language policy still lacks theoretical rigour and practical consistency. It simply accepts the fact that in Stellenausschreibungen von Organen mit Deutsch als Arbeitssprache kaum je Deutschkenntnisse, stets aber Englisch oder Französischkenntnisse verlangt werden. In Germany, the Greens even conducted their campaign for the European elections in English – as if they already regard German, as a lingua franca in Europe, as dead and buried In Germany, the Greens even conducted their campaign for the European elections in English – as if they already regard German, as a lingua franca in Europe, as dead and buried.

23 Languages in eastern Central Europe

24 German in Mittel- und Osteuropa 1 Die deutsche Sprache kann in der MOE-Region lange historische Traditionen und in diesem Zusammenhang auch massive Ressourcen aufweisen. Tabelle 1 zeigt anhand von Zahlenangaben aus Polen, Tschechien, der Slowakei und aus Ungarn, dass Deutsch in Ostmitteleuropa heute (noch) die am meisten beherrschte Fremdsprache ist (Quelle: IMAS - Ost-VA Frühjahr 1995). Was diese Daten hier allerdings nicht verraten, ist, dass sich dieser günstige Wert für das Deutsche vor allem aus der bei den älteren Generationen verbreiteten Deutschkompetenz ergibt, sodass man in einigen Jahren wahrscheinlich schon mit anderen statistischen Angaben - d.h. mit einer Verschiebung zugunsten des Englischen - rechnen muss.

25 German in Mittel- and Osteuropa 2 In all countries of central and eastern Europe except Lithuania and Romania, around 40 % of pupils at most learn German in general secondary education. This also applies to Belgium (the Flemish Community), most of the Nordic countries and Luxembourg, in which German is a mandatory language, whichaccounts for its high percentage at both levels of education. These percentages are also especially marked inthe Czech Republic (73.5 %), Denmark (71.8 %), Slovenia (83 %) and Slovakia (78.2 %). The countries in which less than 10 % of pupils learn German are those in which the Romance languages are spoken or other countries of southern Europe.

26 German in Mittel- and Osteuropa 3 In Slovenia and Romania the percentage of pupils learning a second language (German and French respectively) has clearly been rising. This situation is not apparent in the Czech Republic, Latvia and Lithuania, in which the increase in the percentage of pupils learning English has occurred alongside a slight falling off in the percentage of those learning German. Variations for German and French […] are overall not as marked as for English The percentage of pupils learning German has also decreased in the majority of countries. In the case of this language, (positive or negative) variations are bigger in a greater number of countries. A decrease of 10 percentage points or a little over is apparent in the Czech Republic, Sweden and Slovakia. Only Slovenia recorded a very marked increase between 1998 and 2000.

27 Consequences of mandatory language learning Making German or French mandatory has a clear-cut impact on the proportion of pupils who learn them. Indeed, only in countries in which these languages are mandatory is this proportion equal to or greater than 90 %

28 The teaching of German in Europe 1 In all European countries with the exception of Belgium and Luxembourg, English is the most widely taught foreign language in primary education. In 10 countries, it is taught to 50 % or more of all pupils at this level. German is the most widely learnt language in Luxembourg. In four other countries all in central and eastern Europe, namely the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, the proportion of pupils in primary education who learn German is greater than 10 %.

29 The teaching of German in Europe 2 In the great majority of countries for which data are available, English is the most widely taught language in general secondary education. Just three countries are exceptions, namely Belgium, Luxembourg and Romania. German is the second most widely taught language in over a third of the countries considered. This applies in particular to the Nordic countries and those of central and eastern Europe.

30 Kurzfassung Teil 1 German has over 100 million native speakers on the European landmass. In numerical terms it is the most strongly represented language in Europe other than Russian. Its influence, although one of the official languages of the European Union, ranks far behind that of English, French and Spanish. As the number of member countries continues to increase, so too does the influence of the German language decrease politically, as the languages of the member countries are considered equal in status. The cultural organisations of the German-speaking countries are increasingly turning their efforts to the East as the countries of the old Ostblock turn theirs to the west. The DAAD’s activities in Britain have been steadily reduced in face of a decreasing national interest in foreign language apart from Spanish. Britain lives under a governmental culture where lip-service is paid to foreign languages, German included, although it is regarded as a hard language to learn, but support for languages has faded spectacularly, despite protestations from on high and valiant retrospective efforts

31 Kurzfassung Teil 2 Who cares? –Teachers of German –Cultural organisations –Business employers and national economies –losing huge amounts of profit because the language needs of German-speaking customers who have no English are ignored despite the rôle of English as a lingua franca. –Also non-German-speakers can be disadvantaged by not understanding their commercial partners’ conversations(David Lodge’s Nice Work). –In fact English is an asymmetrically dominant language, not a lingua franca in these contexts. (Ammon/Clyne 1995)

32 Language policy in the UK 1 September 2004: learning a language in maintained schools ceased to be a mandatory part of the curriculum for pupils in the last two years of their compulsory education. Instead it became an entitlement for all students who chose to continue after their three years of mandatory study.

33 Language policy in the UK 2 At the same time as the changes at secondary level, the Government launched a programme to provide an opportunity for all pupils in primary schools to learn a language by The take up of languages in primary schools has gone very well, and a recent survey suggests that already some 70 per cent of primary schools are now offering a language or are close to doing so. Reports indicate that languages are enjoyed by children across the ability range and that there is no lack of enthusiasm, interest or keenness to learn. This has the potential to feed through into the secondary schools, improve performance, and encourage pupils to continue with languages. This is true of the traditional study of French, German, and Spanish, and there is potential amongst community languages, which over the coming two decades will become of increasing commercial importance, and a potential national asset. At the secondary level by contrast, the number taking languages has fallen sharply. Last summer, the numbers continuing with a language to the GCSE at secondary level had fallen to 51 per cent. Inclusion of those takingother language qualifications increases this to only 52 per cent. A survey showed that therewill be a further fall this year. The preliminary signs were that thereafter the fall was levelling off.

34 Language policy in the UK 3 While the policy of languages for all is working well across the whole range of social class and ability in primary schools; at secondarylevel, even before languages ceased to be compulsory, it was never fully achieved. Twenty per cent were being exempted as far back as the year 2000; a third had dropped languages by the time they became an entitlement rather than a requirement; and we have regressed further from it since then.

35 Language policy in the UK 4 The programme of action proposed in the DfES report to enable many more pupils to engage successfully in the study of languages at the secondary level will take two years to complete. If action can be taken quickly on proposals to support language teachers in secondary schools, this together with the opportunities for new approaches to fully accredited learning now offered by the Languages Ladder, and innovative approaches to the GCSE; and with the progressive realisation of our other proposals, schools could be aiming in September 2008 to have made progress towards the 50 to 90 per cent benchmark for entrants to languages in secondary schools proposed last year, and aim to complete their progress to it for entrants to languages in secondary schools in the school year beginning in September 2009,when all proposed changes could be fully in place. ( DfES Languages Review 2007 )

36 Trends in Languages take-up in GB UCAS statistics: latest news on 2007 applications as of 30 June 2007 Current UCAS data indicates that many languages are experiencing increases in first- degree UG applications this year (applications as of end June 2007 compared to end June 2006). This data is for single and major honours applications only. In particular, Japanese applications are up by 41%, German applications up by 20%, and Modern Middle Eastern studies up 10%. This is compared with a 6% overall increase in applications across all subjects, compared to this time last year. A-level languages statistics Total A2 level language entries for year olds in schools and colleges across England have been falling over the past 10 years. Entries in German saw large decreases of 44% from 1996 to The decrease was quite sharp at the end of the 1990’s and has been slowing down since A turnaround in the latest year 2006 saw the first increases for a decade of 5% respectively. Spanish A2 level entries across England have been slowly and tentatively rising, from a lower base, and an overall increase of 27% was seen in the past 10 years. Total Spanish entries (5,200) have now almost caught up with the total number of German entries (5,500), following the decrease in German. We have also seen a proportionately large increase of 46% in A2 level entries for other languages (all languages other than French German and Spanish) from 1996 to This equates to an increase of about 1,500 and totals 5,000 entries across all the other languages available. (source /


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