[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

5374: Re: 5349: Louisiana looks to Haiti to revive French language (fwd)

From: E Vedrine <evedrine@hotmail.com>

Very important documents on Louisiana Creole & French ara also
available at

The Creole Institute.
Voice: (812) 855-4988
Fax: (812) 855-2386"


*The Dictionary of Louisiana Creole*

Edited by Albert Valdman, Thomas A. Klingler,
Margaret M. Marshall, and Kevin J. Rottet

"The only comprehensive dictionary of Louisiana Creole

The dictionary features:

      an informative user's guide
      a grammatical sketch of the language
      a guide to variant pronunciations
      English and French meaning equivalents
      identification of where examples were collected
      two indexes: a French-Creole index and an English-Creole index
      rich cultural information, with many examples of folklore,
traditional medicine, religious beliefs, and agricultural

*  "A lexical tudy of Creole speech of Point Coupee Parish, Louisiana." 
(1992) by Thomas A. Klingler's Ph.D diss. Indiana University

>From: Yacine Khelladi <yacine@aacr.net>
>  Louisiana looks to Haiti to revive French language
>  Associated Press writer
>  NEW ORLEANS -- Stephen Dominick, a Creole New Orleanian with caramel
>brown skin, pores over the French love poems handwritten by his
>great-grandfather more than a century ago.
>  Then he flips to the typed English translation his family had printed
>when it began to archive the letters for future generations.
>  Raised in the French Quarter by the grandchildren of Haitian immigrants
>and well versed in the rich history of  his old port city, Dominick
>regrets that his great-grandfather's passion has become a lost art in
>both his family and community.
>  "Here's someone I probably look like or who looks like someone I love,
>writing 150 years ago about some of  the same hopes, dreams and feelings
>I have, so I think it's important to read it in his native language,"
>said  Dominick, 31, who wasn't raised speaking French but has since
>begun to study it.
>  French remains prevalent on street signs, monuments and menus in New
>Orleans. But the language is seldom spoken any more by locals, many of
>whom are mixed-race or black Creoles whose ancestors were well-versed in
>  These are the very people Louisiana's top French-language official had
>in mind as he quietly refocused his agency's efforts during the past
>  David Cheramie, director of the Council for the Development of French
>in Louisiana, once devoted virtually all of his agency's
>teacher-recruiting resources to France, Belgium and Quebec. But lately
>he has been
>  spending time with educators in Haiti and several other French-speaking
>Caribbean and African countries.
>  At worst, he sees a chance to improve diversity among the state's
>French instructors.
>  At best, he hopes the move will spark a resurgence in interest in
>French among the state's significant black population and strengthen
>economic ties to developing countries -- such as Haiti and Senegal.
>  "Part of the idea is to bring in people who are a closer fit with our
>culture," Cheramie said. "A lot of our students are of African-American
>origin, and we try to show them that, even though a majority of
>French-speakers are white, the Creole element here is very strong."
>  Cheramie's agency, commonly called CODOFIL, was established by state
>lawmakers in 1968, largely in reaction to a Life magazine article that
>predicted that post-World War II homogenization of American culture
>would wipe out French in Louisiana by the turn of the century.
>  CODOFIL has succeeded somewhat in reinstilling French pride and
>boosting elementary school enrollment in French, but mostly among white
>Cajun populations in the Lafayette area.
>  The state's Creole population, centered in New Orleans about 200 miles
>east, has become increasingly disconnected from its French-speaking
>  "In my community there is some jealousy that Cajuns get all credit for
>Louisiana's French heritage when we had a French culture here that was
>just as vibrant and sophisticated," Dominick said.
>  About a third of Louisiana's population is black. Many can trace their
>roots to those who came here in the  early 1800s from French-controlled
>St. Domingue, which, following a bloody revolution, became Haiti.
>  Most who fled the revolution went first to Cuba but were kicked out
>because of friction between France and Spain during the heyday of French
>Emperor Napoleon.
>About 9,000 Haitians, some white but most black or mixed, came to New
>Orleans around 1809, says Augusta Elmwood, a genealogist who specializes
>in tracing ancestry to St. Domingue.
>  "New Orleans was still a pretty small city back then, and they about
>doubled the size," Elmwood said. Others,  like Dominick's
>great-great-grandfather, came directly from Haiti after the revolution.

Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com.

Share information about yourself, create your own public profile at