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China, France discuss linguistic preservation

(Xinhua)

13:29, September 04, 2012

BEIJING, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- More than 170 officials and linguists from China and France attended a seminar in Beijing to discuss efforts to preserve linguistic diversity.

They discussed issues including linguistic policies, linguistic standards, preservation of ethnic languages and the international promotion of Chinese and French languages at the seminar of linguistics policies of China and France, which opened here Monday.

The progress of globalization has resulted in cultural unity as well as linguistic interactions and extinctions, threatening the linguistic identity, said Xavier North, French delegate-general for the French language and the languages of France at the Ministry of Culture and Communication.

People should be wary of the possibility of a monolinguistic world, said Xu Jun, a linguistic professor of China's Nanjing University, adding that efforts to protect linguistic and cultural diversity will be helpful in promoting democracy in international relations.

Cao Zhiyun, vice president of the Beijing Language and Culture University, warned that in China, some dialects are in danger of dying out. He also noted the work by the government and professional circles in researching, recording and preserving dialects.

China is making efforts to promote standard Mandarin Chinese language as well as scientifically protecting the dialects and ethnic minority languages, said Zhang Haoming, a senior official of the Ministry of Education.

China and France can learn from each other and enhance cooperation in linguistic policies and research, since the two countries have many points in common in this field, said Li Weihong, Chinese Vice Minister of Education.
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