Louisiana French: Cultural and Linguistic Resilience in the Twenty-First Century
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The purpose of this research is to develop a comprehensive and multi-faceted understanding of the current status of the French language in Louisiana. French in Louisiana has been spoken for hundreds of years, and, in spite of the decline of first-language speakers of the local Louisiana variety, contemporary efforts to promote and preserve the language have developed and expanded since the 1960’s. This historically disenfranchised language and culture strives to exist into the future through a variety of methods including immersion education, formal and informal community organization and growing interest in Louisiana’s heritage as a Francophone region. Through literature review and the collection of qualitative data, the author explores the current diversity of efforts to promote French in Louisiana and analyzes the causes and conditions of the language’s presence as of 2015. The findings suggest declining numbers of first-language speakers of the Louisiana variety but a possibility for a more significant presence of French language associated with Louisiana culture through the efforts analyzed.