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Thu Sep 27 08:54:41 UTC 2001

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From: Marc Van Campenhoudt <marc.van.campenhoudt at>


Living languages are constantly evolving. Although our present-day
society devotes great care to the protection of numerous species, it
seems less worried about the disappearance of local languages or their
ability to withstand modernity. Linguistic engineering efforts are
primarily directed towards the growth markets and their speakers. There
was a time when linguists could afford to remain aloof, and advocate a
purely descriptive approach. The question that needs to be addressed, of
course, is whether this approach still holds today. As it is inspired by
a great respect for language as a manifestation of cultural identity, it
will willy-nilly end up adapting itself to the dominant ideology which
is that of total market freedom.

In this first issue of Cahiers du Rifal, the Réseau international
francophone d'aménagement linguistique ('The International
French-speaking Linguistic Network') intends to open a wide debate for
papers reviewing the development of languages against the advent of the
new technologies and globalization. Contributions on the following
fields are particularly welcomed:

- The interaction between linguistic and technological developments ;
- Growth languages, link languages, and respect for cultural identity;
- Linguistic engineering in the service of slow-growth languages;
- Linguistic engineering versus the requirements of human development;
- The penetration of the information superhighways in local linguistic
- The (geo)political appropriation of the issue of local languages.

In this first issue, the editors wish to present various points of view
on this vast field, and look forward to receiving contributions based on
theoretical reflexion and/or field work from all geographical areas and

The papers must be written (or translated) in French, and comply with
the stylistic conventions of the Cahiers du Rifal
( Papers should be sent to
the following address by 15 novembre 2001 at the latest :

Marc Van Campenhoudt
Centre de recherche TERMISTI
Institut supérieur de traducteurs et interprètes
34 rue Joseph Hazard
B-1180 Brussels
termisti at

Editors: Isabel Desmet (Paris VIII), Edema Atibakwa Baboya (Celta,
Kinshasa), and Marc Van Campenhoudt (Institut Supérieur de Traducteurs
et Interprètes, Brussels).

Marc Van Campenhoudt, PhD
Centre de recherche TERMISTI
Institut supérieur de traducteurs et interprètes
34, rue Joseph Hazard B-1180 Bruxelles
Téléphone : +32.2.346.26.41
Télécopie : +32.2.346.21.34
marc.van.campenhoudt at
termisti at

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