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After Brexit, EU English will be free to morph into a distinct variety (The Guardian)

Mis à jour : 25 Sep 2017

by Cathleen O'Grady Monday 25 September 2017 16.13 BST

The European parliament building sporting some of the languages spoken by EU member states. Photograph: Christian Lutz/AP

The newfound neutrality of English in Europe may help it survive Brexit as the EU’s lingua franca ... with the addition of a few distinctly un-British quirks.
If your planification isn’t up to snuff, you might need to precise your actorness. English in the EU, spoken primarily by non-native speakers, has taken on a life of its own. While “planification” might be jargon unlikely to pop up outside of Brussels, there are also changes afoot in more everyday spoken English in Europe. You might hear a mobile phone referred to as a “Handy”, and be asked to SMS, not text, your friend.
“Actorness” and a multitude of other examples are listed in “Misused English words and expressions in EU publications”, a guide published by European Court of Auditors senior translator Jeremy Gardner. The guide details many of the ways in which European English has gone a bit wibbly – to a native speaker’s ear, at least. In some cases, words like “agent” are deployed in contexts that would sound fine to a US speaker, but odd to the British or Irish ear. And these are precisely the ears that EU documents should be catering to, Gardner argues: “Our publications need to be comprehensible for their target audience ... and should therefore follow a standard that reflects usage in the United Kingdom and Ireland.”

Note de l'OEP : cet article, intéressant par ailleurs, repose sur une confusion entre "langue seconde" et "langue étrangère".

Il n'y a pas 38% d'européen maîtrisant l'anglais comme langue seconde. La langue seconde est une langue que l'on pratique quotidiennement et que l'on pratique presqu'à égalité avec sa langue maternelle. D'après les enquêtes Eurostat, le nombre d'européens se trouvant dans cette situation serait de l'ordre de 7 à 8%. En revanche, 38% est le nombre d'européens qui, ayant en particulier étudié l'anglais, s'estiment capables de converser en anglais. Ce chiffre n'a pas varié depuis dix ans.

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