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Michael L. Friesner friesner at sas.upenn.edu
Sun Jan 7 18:18:00 UTC 2007

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Subject: Dissertation Defense: Astrid Alkistis Fleischer, 1/9/07, 1:00 pm, =
Date: Fri, 05 Jan 2007 17:05:14 -0500
From: Erin Esch <eee8 at georgetown.edu>
Reply-To: eee8 at georgetown.edu
To: gulinguist at listproc.georgetown.edu

Dissertation Defense: Astrid Alkistis Fleischer
Tuesday, January 9, 2007, 1:00 pm, ICC 462

The politics of language in Quebec:
Language policy and language ideologies in a pluriethnic society

Thesis Advisor: Ralph Fasold, Ph.D.

If you have any questions or would like to attend, please rsvp to
eee8 at georgetown.edu by Monday, January 8, 2007.

     The language question has been a major topic of debate in Quebec
since the 1960s. This study examines the politics of language in light
of the increasing diversity of Quebec society, focussing on the state
discourses on language policy and planning during the last two terms of
the Parti qu=E9b=E9cois (PQ) government (September 1994 - April 2003) and
the reactions these discourses have produced. Based on an integrated
analysis of government documents and archival and ethnographic data, the
study explores the connection between language policy, language
ideologies, and broader sociopolitical developments in Quebec,
particularly in the pluriethnic Montreal metropolitan region.
 =09The Quebec state tried to institute a discursive shift from an ethnic
to a civic nationalism after the 1995 referendum on sovereignty. This
civic nationalism no longer defines itself as a French-Canadian
nationalism, but as a nationalism for all Quebecers. The Quebec state
managed to institute this discursive shift but under conditions of
contestation. This thesis explores the Quebec state=92s struggles with the
ideological legitimacy of its language policy caught between the
ethnolinguistic nationalism that was the original foundation for
legitimacy of the state and its policies and the contradictions this has
in a state that is trying to be open, inclusive, and democratic. Some
particularly revealing moments when this tension becomes evident are
examined. The thesis is, then, about the struggles, the contradictions
between ethnolinguistic minority nationalism and inclusive democracy in
a pluriethnic society.
 =09The study helps us understand the role played by language ideologies in
more general sociopolitical developments, conflicts, and struggles. In
Quebec, the debates about language are clearly political and are, in
essence, debates about identity and the nation. Language policy and
planning have to be seen as primarily political and ideological
endeavors. Language policy is a dynamic and dialogic process; it evolves
together with the state, civil society, and society at large. Various
social and political actors not only have participated in the language
ideological debates, but also have contributed to the evolution of
Quebec language policy and planning during the period in question.

Uri Horesh
Visiting Lecturer
Center for Advanced Proficiency in Arabic
Georgetown University
PO Box 571129
Washington, DC 20057-1129
Phone: 202-687-4443 (office); 267-475-5594 (cell);  202-687-2408 (fax)
uh7 at georgetown.edu                http://www.ling.upenn.edu/~urih/home
"Up yours!", Sir Elton John in a message to Australian Prime Minister
John Howard, whose government overruled a local law allowing gay
unions (BBC News, November 29, 2006).

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