This is a book about the use of languages as a proxy for conflict. It traces the history of Algeria from colonization by the French in 1830 to the celebration of 50 years of independence in 2012, and examines the linguistic issues that have accompanied this turbulent period. The book begins with an examination of 'language conflict' and related concepts, and then applies them to both the French colonists' language policies and the Arabization campaigns which followed independence. This is followed by an analysis of the rivalry between the English and French languages in independent Algeria. The book concludes with a study of the language choices made by Algerian writers and the complex tensions which arose from these choices among intellectuals in the colonial and post-colonial periods.
Mohamed Benrabah is Professor of English Linguistics and Sociolinguistics at UniversitA (c) Grenoble 3, France. The author's research interests include applied phonetics/phonology, sociolinguistics, and language management with a particular interest in the Anglophone, Arabophone and Francophone worlds. He has published two books (Langue et Pouvoir en AlgA (c)rie. Histoire da un Traumatisme Linguistique, SA (c)guier, 1999; Devenir Langue Dominante Mondiale. Un DA (c)fi pour l'Arabe, Librairie Droz, 2009), a monograph, and more than fifty articles in journals and chapters in books.
Prologue: Two cultural wars in 50 years Chapter 1: Circumnavigating a term: "Language conflict" and related concepts Chapter 2: Frenchification: Annihilating indigenous languages Chapter 3: Arabization: At war with diversity Chapter 4: Geopolitics and language rivalry: French versus English Chapter 5: Writers and language as a battlefield: "authenticity" versus "hybridity" Epilogue: The language question as a "lightning rod"