In 2010, the United Nations decided to honour the French language with designating the 20th of March to be the UN French Language Day. It was a day that was meant to raise awareness and respect for the history, culture and achievements of French, one of the six official languages of UN.
The 20 March celebration of French coincides with the 40th anniversary of the International Organization of La Francophonie, a group whose members share a common tongue, as well as the humanist values promoted by the French language.
“French draws its strength from the diversity of the peoples and cultures that share it and contribute daily to its enrichment and vibrancy,” Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, said in Paris.
“UNESCO celebrates the power of the French language in bringing peoples and cultures together, as a tool for mutual understanding and peace,” she added.
She said that UNESCO underlined the importance of linguistic diversity as a condition for sincere and authentic international cooperation, whereby each person’s thoughts can be expressed directly and accurately, without borrowing others’ words.
“This is an issue of equality and respect; it is also a matter of efficiency and clarity,” she said.
The entire venture of introducing special days to celebrate languages is a clear effort to promote multilingualism in our increasingly multicultural world. Become an active member of this community by enrolling in our French courses.