So you’ve decided to learn another language, and you’re wondering if French is the right choice for you. Being bilingual (or multilingual) has numerous benefits, but choosing a language is challenging. Learning requires your time and energy, so you should pick a language that intrigues you. So, if you are considering French, here are some reasons why it is an excellent choice.
French is Widely Used
Some people are surprised to learn that French is a widely used language. In fact, it is the only language besides English that has found a home on all five continents. Besides being the official language of France, it is also the national language of Belgium and one of the primary languages spoken in Canada. Countries as diverse as Cameroon, Haiti, Madagascar, and Senegal speak French. In fact, French is very popular on the African continent; it may become more prominent as growth and development efforts in the area increase the use of the language for international business and negotiations. Certain studies even suggest French may overtake English when it comes to worldwide use.
French is also a popular language for international relations. It is an official language of many large firms such as the United Nations, the Olympic Games, and NATO. And French is a popular secondary language throughout Europe. The widespread use of the language can make it an excellent choice for those looking to conduct business internationally or simply enjoy the tourist lifestyle of traveling the globe.
French was the original language for various classic literary works. Even though you may have enjoyed a translation of the amazing examples of classic literature, being able to enjoy them in their original language can give the works additional depth and meaning. For example, Victor Hugo used French when writing some of his most recognized pieces. This includes well-known works like The Hunchback of Notre-Dame and Les Miserables. Alexander Dumas, the author of The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers, also penned his classic works in French. Those examples only scratch the surface of everything French literature has to offer, so if you fancy yourself a bibliophile, then learning French is a natural choice.
The sophisticated culture of France draws in recognition throughout the world. The country is home to innovations in the arts, architecture, cuisine, fashion, and science. The Louvre calls France home. And the country hosted the scientific breakthroughs of Pierre and Marie Curie and Louis Pasteur. A number of musical greats also resided in France. Edith Piaf’s La Vie en Rose is a prime example of French popular music, as well as La Mer by Charles Trenet. Even if you don't recognize these titles or artists, you have heard their work. Finding Nemo and Saving Private Ryan included La Mer in their soundtrack, while The Bucket List and WALL-E included La Vie en Rose.
Just as reading classic works of literature can take on deeper meanings when enjoyed in their original language, the same applies to the works of great philosophers. Even though Rene Descartes spent a significant portion of his life in the Dutch Republic, he was actually French, and Francois-Marie Arouet, who wrote under the nom de plume of Voltaire, was born in Paris. And that just scratches the surface of what French philosophers offer interested formal academic students and lifelong learners.
Learning French for Potential
As you can see, French has a more prominent place in the world that you may have expected. That makes it an excellent choice for anyone interested in learning a new language for business, education, or simply for fun. So why not give French a try? You might get to use it more than you think.