[Corpora-List] RE: Constitution

Bart Defrancq Bart.Defrancq at UGent.be
Mon May 23 15:21:00 CEST 2005

Dear Jean,


> Well, why is the term "official languages" not included in the

> Constitution then (I thought that it was intended to be a recap of all

> the important concepts of the EU) ? I would have felt better.


I don't know of many constitutions which do mention the official
languages of the country: the Spanish one does, i know and the French,
but only recently. The US's does not. Even the Belgian does not (!):

*/Art. 30

/L'emploi des langues usitées en Belgique est facultatif; il ne peut
être réglé que par la loi, et seulement pour les actes de l'autorité
publique et pour les affaires judiciaires.*

Which means that the choice of official languages is not to be made on
the level of the constitution, but on the level of secundary
legislation. This is exactly the same viewpoint as the one that prevails
in Europe.
I am curious to know what the Corpora-list members can teach us about
their respective constitutions.

>> So English imperialism is certainly not to blame.



> I hope it's clear that I am NOT blaming any kind of English

> imperialism. If anybody is at fault, it's the individual countries who

> do not seem interested in making the right effort in the language

> department.

OK. Point taken. Unfortunately the lack of interest for European matters
is not restricted to the language issue. Which country can claim that it
properly informs its citizens on the European constitution (or on its


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