Call Me Henri
Lorraine López Northwestern University Press, 2006 Library of Congress PZ7.L876363Cal 2006
Enrique, a young boy at the heart of Lorraine López's novel, faces abuse at home and danger on the barrio streets. Yet he is driven to succeed by the desire to join that "other America" he sees on TV and in the movies, and is aided in his quest by compassionate teachers. His ambition finds expression in his determination to drop his ESL class in favor of taking French, and his story begins, Call me Henri.
Lorraine López (author of Soy la Avon Lady and Other Stories) has created a vivid picture of barrio life, filled with honesty, insight, and humor for young adults. She paints a balanced and detailed landscape of Enrique's world. Although Enrique is confused and angered by his mother's refusal to stand up for him against the abuse of his stepfather, he also draws strength from the supportive and loving family of his friend Francisco. While some of his teachers are uncaring or inept, others provide help and encouragement at critical moments in his life.
When Enrique witnesses his friend Horacio gunned down in a drive-by shooting and is seen by the assailants, gang members set out to kill him. As the novel reaches its climax, Enrique must make some agonizing decisions.
Although specifically about barrio life, this novel is universal in its themes—the drive for success, the desire for love and family support, and the need for true friendship. López's fully delineated characters provide a rich and credible mural of our human comedy.
The essays included in this collection seek to take the pulse of recent developments in narratological research in the French-speaking countries. Theorists in these countries heavily participated in and shaped narratology, an outgrowth of the structuralist movement during the 1960s and 1970s. While US, German, and Scandinavian theorists took the forefront in the 1990s, narratology in France faded into the background. It was not until the turn of the century that a new interest in narratological issues among French researchers emerged. Activity in the field has since intensified, spurred on, in part, by the realization that narratology cannot be summed up by its formalist and structuralist origins.
Using eighteenth-century France as a case study, David Bell offers an important new argument about the origins of nationalism. Before the eighteenth century, the very idea of nation-building—a central component of nationalism—did not exist. During this period, leading French intellectual and political figures came to see perfect national unity as a critical priority, and so sought ways to endow all French people with the same language, laws, customs, and values. The period thus gave rise to the first large-scale nationalist program in history.
A careful analysis of the rhetorical thought of René Descartes and of a distinguished group of post-Cartesians. Covering a unique range of authors, including Bernard Lamy and Nicolas Malebranche, Carr attacks the idea, which has become commonplace in contemporary criticism, that the Cartesian system is incompatible with rhetoric.
Carr analyzes the writings of Balzac, the Port-Royalists Arnauld and Nicole, Malebranche, and Lamy, exploring the evolution of Descartes’ thought into their different theories of rhetoric. He constructs his arguments, probing each author’s writings on rhetoric, persuasion, and attention, to demonstrate the basis for rhetorical thought present in Descartes’ theory of persuasion when it is combined with his psychophysiology of attention.
For centuries, French was the language of international commercial and diplomatic relations, a near-dominant language in literature and poetry, and was widely used in teaching. It even became the fashionable language of choice in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries for upper class Dutch, Russians, Italians, Egyptians, and others for personal correspondence, travel journals, and memoirs. This book is the first to take a close look at how French was used in that latter context: outside of France, in personal and private life. It gathers contributions from historians, literary scholars, and linguists and covers a wide range of geographical areas.
-- With support from the Arts and Humanities Research Council of the UK and the Deutsches Historisches Institut Moskau --The French Language in Russia provides the fullest examination and discussion to date of the adoption of the French language by the elites of imperial Russia during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It is interdisciplinary, approaching its subject from the angles of various kinds of history and historical sociolinguistics. Beyond its bearing on some of the grand narratives of Russian thought and literature, this book may afford more general insight into the social, political, cultural, and literary implications and effects of bilingualism in a speech community over a long period. It should also enlarge understanding of francophonie as a pan-European phenomenon. On the broadest plane, it has significance in an age of unprecedented global connectivity, for it invites us to look beyond the experience of a single nation and the social groups and individuals within it in order to discover how languages and the cultures and narratives associated with them have been shared across national boundaries.
French Verbs Made Simple(r)
By David Brodsky University of Texas Press, 2006 Library of Congress PC2271.B76 2006 | Dewey Decimal 448.2421
It’s time for a new approach to learning French verbs. Unlike popular verb guides that require the rote memorization of hundreds of verb forms, this book clearly explains the rules that govern the conjugation of all classes of French verbs—especially the irregular ones that give second-language learners the most trouble. These straightforward, easy-to-understand rules for conjugating French verbs are effective learning tools for both beginning students and more advanced speakers who want to perfect their usage of French verb forms. French Verbs Made Simple(r) has many helpful features that you won’t find in any other verb guide:Clear explanations of all verb tenses and forms.The simple patterns and rules that govern the conjugation of all verbs—including those verbs whose irregularities follow patterns that can be easily learned.A detailed discussion of how each verb form is used, with numerous examples.A full explanation of whether a verb should be conjugated with avoir or être, and the conditions under which the past participle is variable—two of the thorniest problems for students of French.An extended treatment of the subjunctive that will help you understand why it is used in some situations but not others.Complete conjugations for 57 basic model verbs (along with 27 “variants”) and a comprehensive listing of some 6,200 verbs that indicates which of the models each verb follows.Going well beyond any other guide in the clarity and detail of its explanations—as well as the innovative manner in which individual verbs are linked to model conjugations—French Verbs Made Simple(r) is the only guide to French verbs a learner needs.
The Lexicon brings together lexical material from a wide range of published and non-published sources to create an extensive compilation of the vocabulary of Fulfulde as it is spoken in that part of central Mali known as Masina (in Fulfulde, Maasina). The Lexicon is intended primarily for non-Fulfulde speakers who are learning the language at the intermediate or advanced levels and who need access to a comprehensive reference source on Fulfulde vocabulary. Scholars, development workers, and others whose research or fieldwork involves use of the Fulfulde of Masina may find it helpful as well in clarifying nuances of meaning and standardized spelling for the less familiar terms they might encounter. It is also intended that the present work, beyond the matter of organizing vocabulary, will contribute significantly to the expanding lexicographical and linguistic investigations of Fulfulde.
Handbook of French Semantics
Edited by Francis Corblin and Henriëtte de Swart CSLI, 2005 Library of Congress PC2585.H36 2004 | Dewey Decimal 440.143
This book focuses on the semantic particularities of the French language, covering five empirical themes: determiners, adverbs, tense and aspect, negation, and information structure. The specialists contributing here—including general linguists in France and French linguists in the Netherlands—take formal approaches to semantics and its interface with syntax and pragmatics, highlighting meaning in its relation to both structure and use. Their results should be of particular interest to French and Romance linguists who want to study French from a formal semantic perspective and to general linguists who are interested in cross-linguistic semantics.
If you had been living in France in the 1990s, the language you would have heard on the radio and television or seen in the newspapers would be far removed from the French language of ten or twenty years ago. The country and its language have changed tremendously in a relatively short period of time, and, as a result, English speakers with a grounding in French can still find themselves struggling to understand terms commonly encountered in contemporary French society. Luckily, Eleanor and Michel Levieux now bring us up to date with their Insiders' French, an utterly entertaining and informative guide to the language of the "new France."
This "new France" is a country poised to experience the European single currency but uncertain about being part of Europe. It is hooked on fast food but ambivalent about the country where it originated. France today has record unemployment and an increasingly controversial immigrant population. Clearly, given the rapidly changing conditions and lifestyles, conventional French dictionaries alone cannot completely inform readers and visitors. Insiders' French offers a solution to the incomprehension, a unique handbook in which you'll find the language of European union, the space program, abortion and women's rights, high-tech industries, and health care, among other topics. Entries proceed by association of ideas and related terms, with extensive cross-referencing, while still being alphabetized for easy reference like a standard dictionary. Cartoons from major French journals add to your understanding and enjoyment.
Insiders' French opens up the secret territory of French politics and culture that is often not understood by visitors or students, and it does so with wit and verve—qualities that remain in the French language despite its recent changes.
Je me souviens invites post-intermediate students of French to improve their language skills while exploring the complex history and culture of Québec.
Drawing on cultural products from the earliest days of exploration to the present day, Elizabeth Blood and J.Vincent H. Morrissette curate an array of texts that sample Québécois literature, popular culture, art, music, and politics and frame the texts with pre-reading and post-reading activities, cultural notes, and historical overview sections. The interdisciplinary approach challenges students to improve their French language skills while learning about Québec. Thematically organized writings delve into issues central to understanding the many facets of contemporary Québécois identity, while prompts direct students to search for a range of materials online. Je me souviens is an essential resource for students interested in understanding the francophone world.
Learning French from Spanish and Spanish from French provides adult English speakers who have learned either Spanish or French as a second language with the tools to learn the other language as a third language. All human languages have some common elements, but certain languages—because of their shared history—have a great deal in common. French and Spanish are ideal candidates for an approach that highlights their differences in the context of their commonalities.
Research in the growing fields of third-language acquisition and multilingualism documents how successful third-language learners intuitively build on the knowledge they acquired while learning a second language. The book takes advantage of the fact that learners with intermediate proficiency in a second language are used to thinking consciously about language, know themselves as language learners, and can capitalize on what they know about one language to understand the other. For students, travelers, and budding multilinguals, the book will accelerate the learning of French or Spanish as a third language.
Masked Inversion in French
Paul M. Postal University of Chicago Press, 1989 Library of Congress PC2380.P66 1989 | Dewey Decimal 445
In this important work of linguistic analysis, Paul M. Postal addresses a paradigm anomaly in French that has hitherto resisted explanation. A general restriction limiting the form of direct objects in complex infinitival constructions with main verbs like faire fails to hold with certain subordinate verbs, especially connaître. Marshaling extensive evidence, Postal argues that this apparent irregularity is a symptom of a deeper regularity. Rather than being an ordinary transitive complement, the subordinate clause in these cases is actually an Inversion structure, one in which the logical subject demotes to indirect object. However, since this demotion induces no word order change or other direct morphological consequences, the inversion is "masked," and revealed only by several types of apparent anomalies.
This analysis has significant consequences for contemporary syntactic theories. First, the arguments support the view that a sentence's superficial structure cannot be identified with its syntactic structure, even though such an identification is a fundamental assumption of several currently influential grammatical frameworks. Second, even certain theories that do posit abstract aspects of grammatical form fail to allow for the needed Inversion structures. Postal's study supports theories based on the notion of arc and stratification into levels which provide a natural treatment consistent with the factual requirements.
Masked Inversion in French is the first systematic account of this puzzling French syntactic anomaly, and its findings will stimulate research in many areas of natural language grammatical structure.
This expanded edition serves as a comprehensive reference guide as well as a systematic, learner-centered approach for native English-speaking students. The author addresses the most common problems of writing in French, and progresses from words to sentences to paragraphs to the elaboration of accurate and authentic expository prose.
On tourne! is a one-semester, advanced French textbook (5th/6th semester of instruction) designed to be used as a stand-alone text for a course on French and francophone films or for a French conversation course. This textbook could also be used as a supplementary text in an advanced conversation course, a composition course, or a contemporary culture course. On tourne! guides students to analyze and discuss 13 films from France and the francophone world. Each chapter focuses on a single film and includes pre-viewing activities, vocabulary, information on the cultural and linguistic nuances of the film, and post-viewing activities and discussion points. Moreover, each chapter contains a review of an essential grammatical structure as well as idiomatic expressions used in the film to highlight their pragmatic function. The films included explore a wide array of themes, ranging from family, food, and fashion to politics, religion, and racial/ethnic identities.
In this study of modernist aesthetics, Beryl Schlossman reveals how for such writers as Marcel Proust, Gustave Flaubert, and Charles Baudelaire, the Orient came to symbolize the highest aspirations of literary representation. She demonstrates that through allegory, modernism became a style itself, a style that married the ancient and the modern and that emerged as both a cause and an effect, both an ideal construct and an textual materiality, all symbolized by the Orient—land of style, place of plurality, and site of the coexistence of holy lands. Toward the end of Remembrance of Things Past, the narrator describes the act of creating a work of art as a conversion of sensation into a spiritual equivalent. By means of such allegories of “conversion,” Schlossman shows, the modernist artist disappeared within the work of art and left behind the trace of his sublime vocation, a vocation in which he was transformed, in Schlossman’s words, “into a kind of priest kneeling at the altar of beauty before the masked divinity of representation.” The author shows how allegory—the representation of the symbolic as something real—was adapted by modernist writers to reflect subjectivity while masking an authorial origin. She reveals how modernist allegory arose, as Walter Benjamin suggests, at the crossroads of history, sociology, economics, urban architecture, and art—providing a kind of map of capitalism—and was produced through the eyes of a melancholic gazing at a “monument of absence.”
Poetics of Relation
Édouard Glissant University of Michigan Press, 1997 Library of Congress F2081.8.G5513 1997 | Dewey Decimal 972.982
Édouard Glissant, long recognized in the French and francophone world as one of the greatest writers and thinkers of our times, is increasingly attracting attention from English-speaking readers. Born in Martinique in 1928, Glissant earned a doctorate from the Sorbonne. When he returned to his native land in the mid-sixties, his writing began to focus on the idea of a "relational poetics," which laid the groundwork for the "créolité" movement, fueled by the understanding that Caribbean culture and identity are the positive products of a complex and multiple set of local historical circumstances. Some of the metaphors of local identity Glissant favored--the hinterland (or lack of it), the maroon (or runaway slave), the creole language--proved lasting and influential.
In Poetics of Relation, Glissant turns the concrete particulars of Caribbean reality into a complex, energetic vision of a world in transformation. He sees the Antilles as enduring suffering imposed by history, yet as a place whose unique interactions will one day produce an emerging global consensus. Arguing that the writer alone can tap the unconscious of a people and apprehend its multiform culture to provide forms of memory capable of transcending "nonhistory," Glissant defines his "poetics of relation"--both aesthetic and political--as a transformative mode of history, capable of enunciating and making concrete a French-Caribbean reality with a self-defined past and future. Glissant's notions of identity as constructed in relation and not in isolation are germane not only to discussions of Caribbean creolization but also to our understanding of U.S. multiculturalism. In Glissant's view, we come to see that relation in all its senses--telling, listening, connecting, and the parallel consciousness of self and surroundings--is the key to transforming mentalities and reshaping societies.
This translation of Glissant's work preserves the resonating quality of his prose and makes the richness and ambiguities of his voice accessible to readers in English.
"The most important theoretician from the Caribbean writing today. . . . He is central not only to the burgeoning field of Caribbean studies, but also to the newly flourishing literary scene in the French West Indies." --Judith Graves Miller, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Édouard Glissant is Distinguished Professor of French at City University of New York, Graduate Center. Betsy Wing's recent translations include Lucie Aubrac's Outwitting the Gestapo (with Konrad Bieber), Didier Eribon's Michel Foucault and Hélêne Cixous's The Book of Promethea.
Although Montreal has been a bilingual city since 1760 and demographically dominated by French-speakers for well over a century and a quarter, it was not until the late 1960s that full-fledged challenges to the city’s English character emerged. Since then. two decades of agitation over la question linguistique as well as the enactment of three language laws have altered the places of French and English in Montreal‘s schools, public administration, economy. and even commercial signs. In this book, Marc Levine examines the nature of this stunning transformation and, in particular, the role of public policy in promoting it.
The reconquest of Montreal by the French-speaking majority makes for interesting history. It includes episodes of intense conflict and occasional violence and tells the fascinating story of how an economically disadvantaged and culturally threatened linguistic community mobilized politically and used the state to redistribute group power in Canada’s second largest city. In addition, the history of Montreal’s language question offers analysts of urban politics and public policy an excellent case study of some of the central issues facing cities containing more than one major linguistic community.
After tracing the politicization of the language question in the 1960s and 1970s, Levine analyzes the impact of the three controversial language laws penacted by the Quebec provincial government between 1969 and 1977. Exhaustively researched, The Reconquest of Montreal is the definitive study of the most explosive issue in Quebec political life.
In the series Conflicts in Urban and Regional Development, edited by John R. Logan and Todd Swanstrom.
Sons et sens presents a unique cultural approach to French pronunciation for English-speaking students. Each chapter presents a new cultural topic, such as the French education system, vernacular French, and cooking in the francophone world, in order to enhance students’ pronunciation skills within the context of French and francophone culture. Phonetic explanations and rules throughout the textbook are anchored in recent research on French phonology, reflecting contemporary French as well as elements of nonstandard variation from around the francophone world. The authors' approach derives from current research on second language acquisition and pedagogy as well as contemporary research on French linguistics—especially sociolinguistics.
The textbook’s fifteen chapters include a variety of exercises on sound discrimination, rule formulation, phonetic reading and transcriptions, and conversations. The accompanying DVD provides about 200 sound files and several video files that show how sounds are formed with the body. A teacher's edition contains additional materials, including comments and answers keyed to the student text. Perfect for third year students, Sons et sens should appeal to instructors and students of college-level pronunciation and phonetics courses and serve as a valuable reference in a variety of courses where pronunciation is of importance. The book will also interest students with some background in French who want to perfect their pronunciation on their own.
This striking study of the meaning and use of the major spatial prepositions in French provides valuable insight into how the human mind organizes spatial relationships.
Most previous analyses of spatial prepositions have assumed that their semantic properties can be adequately explained by familiar logical and geometrical concepts. Thus, the standard view of the preposition "in" as it appears in the sentence "the ball is in the bag" postulates that it refers to the geometrical relation of inclusion. This paradigm, however, falters when faced with the contrast in acceptability between sentences such as "the bulb is in the socket" and "the bottle is in the cap." The force exerted by the "landmark" (a conceptually fixed object) on the "target" (a moveable object) is crucial in this difference: the functional notion of containment seems more operational in the use of the preposition "in" than inclusion. That is, what are taken to be the landmark and the target depend greatly on the functions these objects serve in the human scheme. This offers important clues to otherwise problematic linguistic quirks, such as why one sleeps in one's bed, while one is said to lie on one's deathbed.
While many of the examples apply in English as well as French, there are some noteworthy differences—in French one sits on a chair, but in a couch. Vandeloise convincingly argues that it is precisely this subjective element which makes a standard geometrical account unfeasible.
A timely exploration of the political uses of language and rhetoric.
Camille Desmoulins, a journalist writing under the Montagnard regime of 1793-94, remarked that France's government had replaced "the language of democracy" with "the cold poison of fear, which paralyzed thought in the bottom of people's souls, and prevented it from pouring forth at the tribunal, or in writing." How this happened, how the Reign of Terror reached even into the realms of thought and language, is the subject of Caroline Weber's book, a revealing look into the paradoxical embargo on free expression that underpinned the Robespierrists' self-proclaimed "despotism of liberty" during the French Revolution.
Weber examines Jean-Jacques Rousseau's and the Robespierrists' articulation of a series of initiatives designed to curtail and control the dissemination of alternative political and philosophical messages in the republic. Here Weber underscores the internal contradictions and limitations of an enterprise that promised universal freedom while oppressing particularism, and that railed against the very language that it was compelled to adopt as a principal political tool. The book then focuses on two eloquent contemporary critics of this phenomenon, Desmoulins and the Marquis de Sade, the infamous libertine author. Weber demonstrates how Desmoulins reconfigured the Montagnard regime's rhetoric to conjure up a political system based on tolerance, not terror, and how Sade deftly parodied the Robespierrists' brutality and hypocrisy, proposing a republic based on the ruthless elimination of dissident voices and on the unabashed celebration of despotism and bloodshed.
A balanced account of how the "discourse of totality" actually restricted particular freedoms in the wake of the French Revolution, this book provides a highly original--and timely--exposition of the political uses of rhetoric and of the links between language and power.
Caroline Weber is assistant professor of Romance languages at the University of Pennsylvania.