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No more French version article?[edit]

The French version of this page existed in 2008, but it was deleted in a seemingly acccidental manner (i.e. replaced by a redirection whhich was itself deleted for being non-neutral). The process to ressuscitate a WP page really looks daunting. So I have contacted instead the editor responsible for the original deletion, to explain him the necessity for a french version. I hope that he will help... If not, I may find the courage to attempt the restoring process by myself... Simon Chabrillat (talk) 15:52, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

My apologies if this is not the most appropriate place to point this out, but I see there is no link to the French language version of this article - even though some entries above do mention the existence of one! If it has been deleted , it needs to be re-uploaded (somehow I'm not surprised that someone would amuse himself by suppressing the easily available French content on this issue...). Otherwise this makes me think of opening an account here and re-translate this back into French.

In any case, thanks everyone for all your hard work. (talk) 09:55, 3 March 2014 (UTC)

Can someone please re-upload the French version ? The article now exists in a dozen languages but not in the language of the very country that is its subject matter ! Why !? -- (talk) 08:25, 2 January 2015 (UTC)

Her defeat and Nicolas Sarkozy's victory[edit]

"Her defeat and Nicolas Sarkozy's victory ensure that Vergonha will go on for another five years at least." does not appear to have a neutral point of view or be a verifiable fact.

The end of traditional Occitan provinces[edit]

This section is misleading because it makes it seem as if the current regions of France were created during the First Republic. --Lazar Taxon 23:37, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

It looks all too POV, the first footnote, for example. (Anonymous Coward) (talk) 16:26, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

The text sounds strongly anti-French. Maybe the information is correct, but the tone is very far from neutral. Unfortunately i don't have direct access to sources and can't check them. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 08:45, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
I can see the good intentions, but a general allegation that it "sounds anti-French", without further exposition and followed by an admission of being unfamiliar with the subject does not make a good case for slapping a POV banner on it. I actually find it a surprisingly well-researched article, to the extent of being the best available on this subject on wikipedia at this time, as recognised even in the comments page of the French version. I have decided, therefore, to remove said banner.
Incidentally, I am surprised by the mention of assertions (not in the English version of this article, but elsewhere) that this policy never existed, as I distinctly remember the "Soyez propes, parlez français" signs in public schools in southern France, dating from the 1950s (and still present in the 1980s). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:03, 18 May 2008 (UTC)
The key to everything is sources, which this pretty long article cites very sparsely.
It's very strongly anti-French and one doesn't need to be an expert on the subject to see it.
If you want to help fight POV here, open an account, and - more importantly - find some better sources. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 04:34, 18 May 2008 (UTC)
Actually i'm a little stupid. Apparently the article does cite a lot of sources, but they are sprinkled around as external links without a title.
I'm gonna go over them, but in the meantime i'd rather leave the POV tag. Any way you turn it, the tone of the article is anti-French. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 08:52, 18 May 2008 (UTC)


I restored the NPOV tag. If one party wants to remove it and other parties want it to be present, there is obviously a dispute over neutrality, and the tag should be there. --Gribeco (talk) 01:48, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Here are some instances of non-neutral wording in the first paragraph only:

  • La vergonha (Occitan for shame, pronounced [beɾˈɣuɲɔ]) is what Occitans call...: there is nothing to back that this label is used by a majority or a significant minority of Occitans.
  • as organized and sanctioned by French political leaders, from Henri Grégoire to Nicolas Sarkozy: there is nothing to back the assertion that Sarkozy has organized/reinforced linguistic discrimination in France
  • which is still a taboo topic in France where some still refuse to admit such discrimination ever existed: this claim is vague (some) and not backed
  • ...can be seen as the result of an attempted linguicide...: can be seen by whom? There is nothing to back the idea that this interpretation is widespread.
My point exactly. There are many more problematic passages.
As i said above, the text does have a lot of sources, but they should be checked and converted to footnotes (for readability, if nothing else.)
If nobody picks it up, i'll do it over the weekend. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 13:57, 22 May 2008 (UTC)
Oh, and now i also saw the edit summary that calls me "anti-Occitan". That's just ridiculous. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 14:02, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

Footnotes formatting[edit]

I started converting URL's to footnotes. I am doing mostly formatting work - i use the title of the article on the linked site as the linked title and put <ref> tags around it, and not much else.

Some of those websites look amateur to me. I am not sure that they are the best reliable sources, and i'd be happy to hear a second (third, fourth etc.) opinion. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 19:26, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

Hi, i'm lilyu from french WP. That article had been on NPOV dispute there for a long time too. As far as i have investigate this case, it's in fact a POV pushing made by someone called Michaël, from this website, it's an occitan activist.
He has post the same obvious POV text on many wikipedia, and he come back once per month to revert any change that could have been made on his text and remove NPOV tags. After a year of this, and the usual "SS, gestapo, nazi !" stuff, we had to ban him and lock the article.
One of the solution try was to expand the article to what happened to other french local languages, not limiting it to the occitan situation. The article was renamed to something like " French governmental's politicies on language uniformisation" (sorry for my poor english), begining it with the French Renaissance situation when french replace latin as official language (but local languages are mainly used by common people), to the revolution and than third republic when the french language, through national education, is spread as a tool to keep the nation united, to finish with the end of the 20th century when those languages come back with a real policie to save them from disapearing ( through TV, radio, Traffic signs and avenue/town names, revival of the culture as a value for tourism, and high school and university teaching etc).
That's what we tried, but well, no real long term solution has been found yet, and the article is stil underwork.
I dont have the english level to modify the article here, so i will let you try to remove at least what looks the most obvious to you, and wish you good luck with michaël :) Lilyu (talk) 08:56, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
Thank you very much for the explanation. That's what i thought. I'll try to improve the sources slowly. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 11:02, 7 June 2008 (UTC)
YesY Done formatting.
But now those references should be checked! --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 09:30, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

Content changes[edit]

I am doing some content changes now:

  • Rewrote the opening to be more concise and more NPOV.
  • Almost all of the articles was in the "Anti-patois policies", so i removed it.
  • Renames the section "The necessity to annihilate the patois" to "Abbé Grégoire's "Report on the necessity and means to annihilate the patois"", because it's about the document that supported the necessity, not about the objective necessity.
  • Re-worded the "very derogatory choice of the word" part.
  • Removed redundant country area comparisons:
    • The Occitan provinces spread over a little less than 200,000km², twice the area of South Korea and just over that of Senegal, more than twenty-three times the size of the island of Corsica
    • The size of Gascony and Guyenne was comparable to that of Sierra Leone, Ireland, Georgia and Sri Lanka, or eight times the land area of Corsica
    • The size of Languedoc was comparable to that of Denmark, Estonia and Bhutan, and over five times the size of Corsica

More changes to come.

Any criticism of my changes is welcome! --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 16:41, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

I finished formatting the references and re-wording the most blatant POV parts, but this article still needs more polish.
I am particularly disturbed by the sources that appear on free-access sites such as, and . But i could also be wrong. That's why i put refimprove, citecheck and external links tags.
I am also keeping the POV tag. This article presents anti-Occitan policies in great detail, but i still feel that it presents them too strongly as French nationalism. Some of the citations demonstrate the anti-patois sentiment of their authors well, but the conclusions in the article may well be original research, so more opinions are needed.
None of the tags should be removed until there's a clear consensus about it on the talk page. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 12:55, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Abbé Grégoire's speach was made during the so called "terror" period, a period of the french revolution full of blood and extreme decisions and actions from the revolutionary peoples. Most laws and deisions of this periode were cancelled after the end of the Robespierre governnment (sentenced to death). For exemple, the décret (gvt decision) of 2 Thermidor (20 juillet 1794) regarding usage of the french language was cancelled only 6 weeks later (2 septembre 1794 = 16 fructidor an II).[1] It was never used.

The decison of the 17 novembre 1794 (27 brumaire an III) by Joseph Lakanal, state that teaching will be made using french language, and that language of the country (patois) will be use only as a secondary way. This decision was hardly followed, by lack of a significant number of teachers speacking french. With napoleon and later, priests are allowed again to teach, and so latin come back, and in fact, there were more teachers speacking latin than french speacking teachers.[2]

During most of the 19th century, there is no particuliar decision regarding the language. French progress through conscription (military service) and centralization rather than a real policie regarding languages.

The third republic period is a period of huge changes in education : french language, laic and public school, rejection of religion in school and public services etc. Priest teachers were mostly teaching in patois, and by opposition, laic public schools were in french. Most witnessings might be talking about true things happening, but sources used are not good regarding WP policy : mostly blogs, forum, no link to the real name of the authors ( a girl, my grand parents told me...). No verifiability and notorious sources.

Regarding the whole article, there need to be a huge cut in the citations. This article was mostly a compilation of choosen sources with lack of analise and context. Probably a compilation made by copy-pasting using google and googlebooks. And the small part which was written to present informations was single POVed. Wikipedia is not wikiquote... And songs lyrics at the end of the article are copyvios, no ?

French article has been enhanced significantly, but still need more work.--Lilyu (talk) 03:15, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

Restored NPOV tag[edit]

I came across this article today, and reading through it, recognized that it is a grievous failure of NPOV; full of unsourced statements or statements attributed to blogs, free webhosts, and other sites of dubious provenance; and in general a trainwreck of WP:NOT violations. It appears that this topic is rather contentious, and previous efforts to fix it have been sabotaged by unregistered editors undoing all of the work accomplished by those who discussed the article here on the talk page; this needs to stop.

As my command of French is very weak (and of Occitan, nonexistent), it would be appreciated if someone familiar with the languages (and without a partisan axe to grind) could go through and verify the sources. Once the sources are verified, it will be possible to rewrite the article to eliminate the soapbox tone it currently uses. Horologium (talk) 16:11, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

The problem here is that there is simply no NPOV-sounding way to present what effectively constituted/s a centuries-long cultural genocide. Likewise it's a little hard to talk about WWII without appearing to fall into anti-nazi bias. Synthesizing sources are hard to come by because few studies have been done; mostly you have to rely on the primary material available, and that would be the long list of official decrees mandating the use of french in every sphere (which are noteworthy by their lack of reference to any other language) and the endless public statements of the most diverse personalities calling for the abolition of everything non-french (which sound for the most part so incendiary that seem almost caricature and hence not to be taken as serious evidence, but in fact were quite effective in their time). When all is said and done, one can hardly doubt that french didn't acquire its current status throughout the territory of France, of which it covered only a half less than 200 years ago, without a serious machine behind it. And to this day the use of 'regional' languages is considered improper in France, albeit not illegal, despite some words of fake tolerance now and then. The PC point of view is that people are free to talk 'regional' languages as long as they do it at home, that they are free to teach them if they do it with their own money, and that they are free to broadcast them if they do a majority of the broadcasting in french. The fact remains that the minister of Eduaction, not many years ago, said something like 'We need english-speaking computer scientists and some would have us train occitan-speaking peasants', not only relegating occitan to the scope of an L2 (whereas it is an L1 for some, and for others it's a rediscovered L1, but hardly used or usable as an L2 by anyone, as is obvious) but also implying both that occitan-speaking people can do no better than agriculture and that agriculture is something to be despised. The fact remains that the mass media officially devoted to the 'regions' have only a little part of their content in a 'regional' language, and whenever it's time to cut the budget it's always that already minute part that suffers.

And there's a problem here that I've seen elsewhere. These articles are written, or should I say cobbled together, by people not necessarily having the skill or patience to be 100% correct and stay here defending their data. At the same time, these matters are not so widely known as others, and the Internet, if not Wikipedia itself, are the first medium since ever in which these situations can be thoroughly presented (even such a non-political work as Alibert's grammar, the first modern scientific work done in occitan about occitan, had to be published by then Catalonia, or it wouldn't have seen the light of day). It's just natural that sourcing doesn't meet all the high criteria, but more to the point, the general public's ignorance of the matter leads to quite a raising of the bar (no one asks for sources when someone writes that the nazis were bent on world domination, and if the whole revisionism thing has taught us something is that sourcing can be quite hard to find when it's needed and the common unsourced knowledge of the public is fundamental).

And the crux of the matter is that then a lot of people come across articles such as this, find them a bit hard to believe, look for sourcing, subject it to a scrutiny more thorough than usual, find it lacking, and conclude that this is NPOV propaganda at work. And then set on about tagging and trimming the article, but all the while recognising that they know very little or nothing about the subject. And this is key - for all your good intentions, you know next to nothing on the subject, and there should be rule in Wikipedia that people who admit to know nothing about a subject should refrain from weighing on it, even if their weighing is seemingly objective - source and tone checking -, because those things are never objective, and the potential harm done by shutting out seemingly exaggerated data on an issue of little public perception is greater than the potential harm done by letting it stay. What's more, this article deals precisely with the shutting off, not of an opinion, but of whole languages and cultures, from public life, and ultimately from life itself. (talk) 02:29, 29 July 2009 (UTC)

All right, NOTHING has happened here since 10 months ago. I'm'a remove the tag. (talk) 21:44, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Incomplete tag[edit]

Patois? Really? Or propaganda?[edit]

This article needs to have some information about whether langue d'oc is a patois or a language. Now: I understand that lingustically speaking, the term patois is not defined. I suppose that means you can call anything a patois and not be "wrong". Nevertheless, the anti-langue d'oc policies were justified on the grounds that langue d'oc is not a real language, but a bastardization or creole of "si" and/or "oui" languages. For this article to perpetuate that, without a fair analysis of the truth of that propaganda (whether true or not, it's propaganda) is to, at worst, perpetuate the justification for the policy, or, at best, to fail to present this subject matter fairly - to either side of the debate. It doesn't matter to me what the truth is. Is it or isn't it an unstandard or creole patois? Is it or isn't it a centuries-old real language? It doesn't matter either way, it just needs to be sourced and included. It's like talking about non-progressive opponents producing propaganda about "recruiting children" in an article about gay politics, without talking about whether "recruiting children" is an actual gay agenda, whether "recruiting children" is a fabrication perpetuated by religious opponents, whether it's psychologically possible to "recruit children" to homosexuality, etc. To talk about it without analyzing it is negligent. (talk) 21:15, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Is that supposed to be a bad joke? Occitan was the first modern European language to appear in a written form, long before French and English. Occitan was understood and heard all across Europe in the early Middle Ages thanks to the works of troubadours and trobairises. Occitan has nearly as many words as English does, which means it's way more than any "si" or "oïl" dialect. Dante and Victor Hugo wrote in Occitan. Frederic Mistral was awarded a Nobel Prize in 1904, even before any French writer. You also might be interested to know that French, which is basically the language of the Franks, of Germanic origin, borrowed many of its "Latin" words from Occitan, which is a true Latin language: this is how "amor" became "amour" (the letter o is pronounced [u] in Occitan). Now, if you care to give what you call my patois a second look and leave your prejudiced views behind, I'll be more than happy to hand you a list of Occitan works. A patois is basically oral. Occitan is a noble and ancient tongue that is absolutely not a corrupted form of French. Linguists have proved that Occitan is very close to Spanish, Portuguese and Italian, and only loosely related to French (16 common markers out of 20 for Spanish, 4 out of 20 for French). Real propaganda is about spreading ignorance. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
I can confirm what the anonymous user wrote above: it was under the influence of written Occitan brought to the Iberian peninsula by troubadours that the Portuguese language adopted the digraphs lh and nh in late Mediaeval times, a clear indication of Occitan's prestige back then; this common feature is precisely what called my attention to this article: in Portuguese, vergonha (shame) is written exactly in the same way as in Occitan. Capmo (talk) 03:23, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Joke's on you. You miss my point entirely. In fact, besides missing the point, you seem to have my meaning completely backward too. I'm not saying your language is a patois, I'm saying that the French have propagandized that it is, that this article repeats it, and that balancing information or at least verification is needed, on the subject of "whether langue d'oc is a patois or a language". You seem like the perfect person to fill in the blanks which I pointed out. (talk) 06:55, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

To you, the nature of your language might be takable for granted, but to me, and to any encyclopedia, "To talk about it without analyzing it is negligent". Just because you never thought to challenge the French propaganda doesn't mean I am a tasteless joker. (talk) 07:06, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

Instead of bickering, could you please improve the sources? Thanks in advance. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 10:47, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

be careful here[edit]

Someone put "Americanization" and "melting pot" as a "similar policy" supposedly of eliminating minority languages in the US. I know that language issues cause strong feelings to arise, and that plenty of people are resentful of the cultural dominance of English and the U.S. But it's important (and doubly so when strong emotions are involved) not to let POV feelings take over. Neither "Americanization" nor "melting pot" by themselves refer to any policy of language elimination. It is true that the general treatment of American Indians has been shameful, and same thing has happened in the past with certain immigrant groups (e.g. Chinese and Japanese). Currently still there is an issue over whether non-standard dialects of English (esp. Black English) are simply other dialects (as linguists say) or a "corruption" of English (as many non-technical people say). All of these issues, however, are similar to things that have happened and continue to happen in societies all over the world, and none of them by themselves indicate attempts at "linguicide" per se.

For that matter, this article needs to carefully distinguish between conscious attempts to destroy minority languages, language death as a result of negligence (i.e. lack of active support), and language death as a simple result of minority-language speakers choosing to switch for economic or similar reasons. It's an unfortunate fact of life that minority languages are regularly given up by speakers who don't see a benefit to using them. For that matter, many (perhaps most) of the most vocal "Occitan activists" don't themselves even use Occitan regularly! Actually learning and regularly using a minority language is much harder work than simply screaming (in French) about how evil the French government is. Educating your children in a minority language is likely to make their life harder, hence most parents don't want it unless they feel a strong cultural attachment to the language (as in Catalonia). Benwing (talk) 04:10, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Nonsense. Read something about the stuff done to Cajuns, New Mexico Hispanics and Hawaiians if you think this is just about Native Americans or immigrants. Similar policies were certainly carried out for the sake of Americanization, children were beaten for speaking French in Louisiana schools for example (and these kids were not "immigrants" in any sense of the word).
Furthermore, in your second paragraph you seem to neglect the fact that a living language is not just a tool for communication, it's also a cultural sphere in itself. You need a whole community of speakers to be able to raise kids as real natives. The revitalization can't be carried out by some lone activists with no government support, without public media, without many schools teaching in the language... in other words, you need a favourable linguistic environment, not just some dedicated activists. Educating your kids in a minority language does not make their life harder because in France they'll necessarily be bilingual anyway. That's the kind of absurd viewpoint that's shoved down the throat of colonized and annexed peoples to cause language extinction. saɪm duʃan Talk|Contribs 20:01, 18 April 2013 (UTC)

Appropriate title?[edit]

Is "Vergonha" the best title for this article? Vergonha is specifically an Occitan term, but these linguistic policies affected people throughout France, not just in the south. (talk) 00:27, 31 August 2013 (UTC)