Emmanuel Macron inaugurated; the City international French language training at the renovated Villers-Cotterêts castle for the occasion this Monday, October 30. The project initiated by the head of state in 2017, however, met with criticism, particularly political.
The event attracted all the attention of the Elysée: the Citéé international level of the French language has been established inaugurated this Monday, October 30 at the Château de Villers-Cotterêts. And of course Emmanuel Macron, who himself initiated the the project in 2017, was present and took the first step in the project. the floor of the Château de l'Aisne completely renovated for the occasion. The head of state who attended à the finalization of his project highlighted that "never had a place been dedicated to à the history of our language" before the creation of this City; during his speech to the 500 guests of the event.
Filled with good intentions, start by saving from ruin the castle of Villers-Cotterêts in which François I had signed, in 1539, the ordinance imposing the use of French in the editorial staff legal and administrative texts the place of Latin, the creation of the Cité International Institute of the French Language – intended for To be the "beating heart of the Francophonie" according to the Minister of Culture, Rima Abdul-Malak – is not unanimous.
An investment of 210 million euros that raises eyebrows
Critics rose against the new temple of French among the members of the French Academy, defenders of the language of Molière. The essayist, novelist and academician Jean-Marie Rouart did not miss out on his work. to criticize a form of hypocrisy according to him. First attack of the academician: the estimated cost of the project à 210 million euros. "It's 210 million euros that will be taken from what? On the help that could be given to French institutes which are in distress. The French Academy, at what is it for, if not to ça. It is used to defense and security the illustration of the French language" he said. on
Europe 1 denouncing a useless investment. A position that he reaffirmed at the microphone of Franceinfo : "We are spending a crazy amount of money in this castle which will not be used for our future. Nothing. The French language is expressed through literature, it is not a museum object.
A criticism also formulated by some residents of Villers-Cotterêts, a town which they believe deserves to be revitalized. "A large majority People from Villers-Cotterêts do not agree with everything that is happening. We arrive at 210 million euros, that's what doesn't work. We could have put this money elsewhere,” he regretted. a resident of the city at the microphone of
However, Jean-Marie Rouart's opinion is not shared. by his academic colleagues. Erik Orsenna notably judged the essayist is severe and considers that the City is international as "a gratitude to our language”. As for criticism of a useless museum he retorts: "It is not a museum that has been built, it is a city, a town, in which we will see all the possibilities of language. In the opinion of the director of the City, Paul Rondin, the castle "is not here to preserve the French language, but to bring it to life, to reveal its diversity extraordinary.
A project also political for Emmanuel Macron
The investment made by Emmanuel Macron in 2017, à the time when he was still a candidate for The presidential election, undeniably has a political aspect. The castle of Villers-Cotterêts is located in a town of 10,000 inhabitants acquired during the National Rally with the mayor Franck Briffaut at the head of the Town Hall since 2014. The creation of the Cité International intervention on these lands would therefore be a way for Emmanuel Macron to assert himself among the far-right electorate.
Members of the far-right far right have not all welcomed the project with joy. The deputy Jocelyn Dessigny who denounces to
Franceinfoa form of "contempt" à the address of the Caudrésiens who were, according to him, "taken for imbeciles, illiterates, as we have read in the various newspapers." But Mayor Franck Briffaut assures for his part that that the City has “gone out of its way to support this project in every way that we have been able to do so.” possible to do so", "unlike this to what [the head of state, editor's note] expected.
The opposition between the presidential camp and the National Rally is found in the speech of the 39;Elysée which ensures time of the inauguration that "this project is an antidote to the feeling of abandonment. It is even a way of outlining future prospects, of showing that the recovery of a territory does not involve withdrawal, but through openness. towards others through values of universalism and progressivism. However, Jocelyn Dessigny believes that the head of state has not succeeded in achieving this goal. to attract the electorate of Villers-Cotterêts: "The expected effects are not to be expected. the height of its ambitions since today, the more we advance in this project, the more the voters of Villers-Cotterêts vote for the National Rally."