The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages and the French Dilemna: Diversity V. Unicity - Which language(s) for the Republic ? (Regional or Minority languages No. 4) (2004)
In France, the interruption of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages ratification process following a decision by the Constitutional Council gave rise to a heated debate. Should regional languages in France be afforded protection? Is there a danger that promoting regional languages could encourage the assertion of regional identities to such an extent that the cohesiveness of the national community were at risk? Do measures to protect regional or minority languages represent a real danger to a country's official language? Can regional or minority languages be effectively protected just by putting the principles of the charter into practice without going though the ratification process? How should France's position be understood in the light of the growing number of ratifications, including by the majority of the current members of the European Union. This Colloquy sought to provide answers to the above questions.