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Regional languages and dialects such as Breton, Catalan, Corsican, Basque, Alsatian, and Flemish are still in use, and some are taught in regional schools.
The law of 11 January 1951 permitted the teaching of regional languages in regions in which they were in use.
While tied to the mainland of Europe, the country is open to the Atlantic to the west.
The degree to which France is today a homogeneous nation is a highly contested topic.The purity of the language is officially protected by the Académie Française established by Cardinal Richelieu in the seventeenth century, whose forty members rule over the inclusion of new words in the language.In 1966, the government instituted a further safeguard by establishing a commission on the French language whose role is to discourage borrowings from English and franglais (the combination of the two languages).Political and linguistic unification, especially through mass education, has been an ongoing project of nationalism.
The immigrant population comes mainly from Portugal and northern Africa, although there has been increasing immigration from eastern Europe.
France takes a highly assimilationist approach to its immigrant populations.