What happens to a language when war breaks out on its territory? How do families do when what you speak immediately links you to one side or the other? This week, “Le Temps” examines how in Ukraine, Kosovo, the former Yugoslavia and Ireland, language, an intimate object, has become a political object. Or, sometimes, the key to appeasement, as in South Tyrol, a former Austrian territory attached to Italy, an example of a compromise that succeeded.
Previous episode: Ukrainian and Russian, the break
Jake Mac Siacais takes our notebook from our hands and begins to sketch a sketch. “The prison was like this: several large cells in which we were; at the four corners there were watchtowers with British soldiers; still around there was barbed wire, and beyond that stretched the rest of the prison, itself surrounded by walls. We were a kind of prison inside the prison and we organized ourselves as we wanted. It was therefore decided that those who wanted to learn Irish could meet in the same cell. We spoke this language exclusively between us. We had voted to ban English.