Il est difficile de croire que ce genre de machination, implantée depuis des
décennies, ne soit pas connue par les responsables politiques européens.

Il est, au contraire, vraisemblable que tout le monde soit au courrant et
laisse faire au grand dam du citoyen européen bradé au pouvoir économique
dominant, et soumis à un dessin d’esclavage linguistique et culturel qui est,
déjà, en train de dévoyer le projet d’intégration de l’Europe.

Rien ne peut, en effets, justifier l’aveuglement et l’inertie de la classe
politique européenne, de tout bord, face à l’agressivité de la stratégie de
colonisation anglo- méricaine si ce n’est que le pouvoir d’intimidation dont
celle-ci dispose. Encore aujourd’hui comme en 1939, les puissants de l’Europe
plient face à la force brute et n’en finissent pas de célébrer la "mémoire" pour
occulter le présent.

Anna Maria Campogrande

"Anglo-American Conference Report 1961"

Je suis actuellement ‘Visiting Fellow’ a l’universite de Cambridge, et
l’ordinateur que j’utilise n’a pas d’accents francais. Je m’excuse.

Il y a a peu pres un mois, Henri Masson m’a demande d’ecrire un page ou deux
sur ce sujet. En effet l’existence du rapport est connue par le grand public
uniquement grace au fait que le British Council m’a donne le droit de citer le
rapport dans mon livre ‘Linguistic impeprialism’ (Oxford University Press,
1992). Le texte de ma presentation de ce rapport a ete traduit en francais et en
esperanto, et sera bientot publie.

Robert Phillipson

Voici le texte en anglais, Robert Phillipson

‘English to transform the students’ whole world’.
A clarification of the 1961 Anglo-American conference report

Robert Phillipson
Copenhagen Business School, Denmark (

In my book Linguistic imperialism, published by Oxford University Press in
1992, I analyse how English has become so powerful throughout the world. The
book reports on a substantial number of British and US policy documents on the
promotion of English as a key instrument of foreign policy.

US policies for establishing global dominance have been explicit since the
1940s. Massive funding came from the US government and from the private sector.
For instance, in the mid-1960s the Ford Foundation was funding projects to
strengthen English in 38 countries. A recent book on the ‘cultural Cold War’
describes the activities of the CIA in Europe in attempting to influence
academics, journalists and the cultural world.

The British Council was the key instrument for cultural diplomacy and the
teaching of English worldwide. Since the 1950s there has been a British strategy
for making English a ‘world language’, the key second language wherever it is
not already the first.

There was an obvious need for the British and Americans to coordinate their
involvement in building up English teaching worldwide. The university
infrastructure for ‘English as a Second Language’ and the new specialisation
‘Applied Linguistics’ needed to be built up, virtually from scratch. The
governments needed to reduce the element of competition between the two
countries which, as George Bernard Shaw put it, are ‘divided by a common
language’. The US and UK were pursuing broadly similar goals. They needed to
exchange information on teacher training, curriculum development and teaching
materials, and policy in school and university education.

British activities were discussed at a conference in Oxford in 1955, to which
the US government was invited to send delegates. A conference in Washington DC
was held in 1959, and attended by five British participants. See the detailed
report published by the Center for Applied Linguistics, Proceedings of the
Conference on Teaching English Abroad. May 1959.

The next conference was held in Cambridge in 1961, again with US
participation. Unlike the 1959 conference, no report was produced for public
consumption. A confidential internal report was written for the British Council,
which I was given permission to quote from in my book. The purpose of the report
was to demonstrate that the field of English teaching worldwide was acquiring
academic respectability on both sides of the Atlantic, and deserved increased
government funding. It was not intended for wide circulation. It is therefore
rather more frank and explicit about political goals than language specialists
would be when discussing professional issues. Key participants are therefore
quoted for the following:

The teaching of English to non-native speakers may permanently transform the
students’ whole world.
If and when a new language becomes really operant in an undeveloped country, the
students’ world becomes restructured.
A Ministry of Education – under nationalistic pressures – may not be a good
judge of a country’s interests.. A nationalistic spirit could wreck all hopes
for English as a second language.
English has become not only the representative of contemporary English-speaking
thought and feeling but a vehicle of the entire developing human tradition: the
best (and worst) that has been thought and felt by man in all recorded times.

This is a rationale for English linguistic imperialism, for all people, at
all times. It claims that English is the only language needed in the modern
world. It states that newly independent countries may, for ‘nationalistic’
reasons, be misguided enough to resist English, and that in such cases, their
wishes should be over-ruled. This was in the political and commercial interest
of the English-speaking countries.

This policy represents a plan for extending worldwide the monolingual
policies that were implemented in the United Kingdom and the USA in the
nineteenth and twentieth centuries (policies that succeeded in restricting but
not eliminating linguistic diversity). The position has been broadly similar in
France since the Revolution. French efforts to promote French as a world
language, in competition with the British and Americans, are presented in Daniel
Coste, Aspects d’une politique de diffusion du français langue étrangère depuis
1945, matériaux pour une histoire (Hatier, 1984).

(Le 6 février 2005)