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20th Anniversary of Euro Charter for Regional & Minority Languages

Event Type
European Union Center, School of Literatures, Cultures, and Linguistics, School of Law, REEEC, French@Illinois, Department of French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese, Linguistics, Slavic, Germanic Languages and Literatures, Political Science, Anthropology, Communication, Program in Scandinavian Studies, Program in Second Language Acquisition and Teacher Education
Lucy Ellis Lounge, Foreign Languages Building
Nov 5, 2012   9:00 am - 5:00 pm  
Keynotes: Alexey Kozhemyakov, Head of the Charter Secretariat, Council of Europe, Alexandra Jaffe (California State University, Long Beach) and Inigo Urrutia (School of Law, University of the Basque Country, Bilbao)
Zsuzsanna Fagyal (French), Eda Derhemi (SIP)
Originating Calendar
European Union Center Events

Summary of Keynote Addresses: After an introduction to the Council of Europe’s involvement in minority language protection, Alexey Kozhemyakov will summarize the procedures of application and achievements of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (ECMRL). Taking Alsace (France) as an illustration, he will elaborate on old and new challenges that still lie ahead for the Charter.

Alexandra Jaffe will focus on the minority language of Corsica in France, a non-ratifying country of the ECMRL. She will show how current Corsican language policy documents draw on European discourses about minority language rights, cultural identity, the plurilingual citizen, and position Corsican as "polynomic", with respect to language norms.

Laws requiring the use of the national language in media broadcasts and food labeling can be seen as barriers to trade and free circulation of goods increasingly advocated by the EU. Inigo Urrutia will analyze the answer of EU case-law to the tension between national cultural and linguistic goals and the pressure of the EU’s market freedoms in Europe.

Description: This fall Europe commemorates the 20th anniversary of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, a ground-breaking treaty of the Council of Europe protecting and promoting historical minority languages in Europe since its opening for signatures on November 5, 1992. The European Union Center and participating centers and units of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are organizing a one-day symposium on November 5, 2012 to reflect on the progress in implementing and monitoring the Charter, and the effects of lack of protection of languages in greater Europe. The event is of interest to the specialized and broader public wishing to know more about political, cultural, and and legal issues of European minorities.

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