Glendon College will host the third edition of the Toronto Francophonie Forum on March 23 from 9am to 5pm with featured guests discussing the theme “Bilingualism – A Double Edged Sword? Beyond the French Language Services Act”.
The event takes place at the Centre of Excellence, A100, located at 2275 Bayview Ave. The forum will be followed by a closing reception from 5 to 7pm.
Canadian society in general – and Ontario in particular – is faced with a double challenge. On one hand, the globalization of economic systems generates growing needs in terms of foreign language skills; on the other, the increased mobility of the workforce and migration from non-French speaking countries where French is the language spoken most often resulted in a massive presence of foreign-language speakers and Francophiles.
The two phenomena produce various forms of bilingualism and a perception of the French language and community engagement that takes many forms.
With the variety of strategies and processes for French-language acquisition, maintaining the use of French is not without apprehension. Could the bi- or multilingual nature of the Toronto Francophonie threaten the development of a clear francophone identity? Is the use of French in Francophone communities not compromised by the daily contact with other languages? What about for the Francophone community in Toronto? What are the consequences of bilingualism on the economic and social development of the Francophone community of Toronto? What is the current impact of English-language acquisition on the identity-building of Franco-Torontonians? Would the response to this question differ depending on their geographic location? Whether from northern, southern, eastern or western Ontario?
Basing ourselves on the results of recent research and experiences of bilingual university students and graduates, the forum attempts to reopen the debate on the question of the impact of bilingualism on the economic development and construction of the social and community fabric of Toronto’s Francophonie and the southwestern region.
Featured speakers at the event – In addition to a student panel and a conversation with the French Language Advisory Committee of the City of Toronto – include:
- Dyane Adam, former commissioner of Official Languages
- François Boileau, French Language Services commissioner of Ontario
- Stacy Churchill, University of Toronto
- Richard Clément, University of Ottawa
- Marie-Lison Fougère, deputy minister of Francophone Affairs
- Normand Labrie, CREFO/OISE, University of Toronto
- Marie Moliner, executive director for the Department of Canadian Heritage, Ontario Region
- Raymond Mougeon, Glendon Campus, York University
To register for the forum, visit www.glendon.yorku.ca/about/francophone-forum/registration.