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By Jeanine Treffers-Daller, Roland Willemyns

The present quantity brings jointly sociolinguistic analyses of language touch alongside the Romance Germanic Language Border, laying off extra mild at the variable and the common components in language touch and shift. It covers the entire diversity of the border, from French Flanders via South Tirol. all the things of it's been taken care of via striking specialists. They describe the present cutting-edge in ‘their' component to the language border and contain info at the criminal and/or sensible prestige of the language border and the prestige and serve as of all languages involved. Attitudinal and language making plans tasks in addition to the standardisation prestige of the locally legit and minority languages are mentioned. Language borrowing, code switching and different language touch phenomena are analysed intimately.

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The typical West Flemish name for it is stekkerdraad. This new word was only able to penetrate into a narrow strip along the border. The inner part of French Flanders had already been cut off from West Flemish influence. However, at the time the local dialect in this inner part was still vital enough to create new words for the new thing, such as pieker- or fiekerdraad. The increasing influence of French is also clear from the loan translation ijzerdraad (from Fr. fil de fer) and the loan word barbelé (draad) (see Map 3).

Yet, that was declined on the basis of ‘antipatriotism’. It is characteristic that German in Alsace and Flemish or Dutch in French Flanders were excluded from the Deixonne law that regulated the teaching of minority languages in 1951. Possible ‘help’ from abroad (Wood, 1980) has hardly ever been successful. In both world wars the German occupants tried to exploit the frustrations concerning the French language policy in favour of their own policy. The fact that the leader of the Flemish Movement in France, the priest Jean Marie Gantois, openly defended the collaboration with the Nazis, compromised all Flemish linguistic or cultural claims after the second World War.

The Walloons having been opposed to widespread bilingualism throughout the country, Belgium gradually turned to the territoriality principle model to accommodate its various linguistic groups. It officialised the language frontier as a domestic administrative border, made it virtually unchangeable and accomplished the linguistic homogeneity of the language groups and regions. The Belgian language struggle has never been an exclusively linguistic problem but has always been intertwined with social and political issues as well.

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