Philosophy of School Multilingualism in the Era of Political Multiculturalism. French Experience. Case of France

Introduction. The policy of European multiculturalism includes the obligatory study of two foreign languages from elementary school. In France, the hours devoted primarily to mathematics are constantly decreasing for this. But fewer and fewer children are able to cope with such a “lightweight” and “interesting” program, and for many years there has been a decline in the level of general education. The aim of the study is to find out the connection of this level with multilingualism, both objective and imposed on the school by political decisions. Methodology and sources. The study uses the methodology of philosophical anthropology and philosophy of culture, through which a philosophical reflection of the formation of personality is carried out. A philosophical understanding of the data of sociology, cultural anthropology, social psychology (on the example of France) on the problem of school education as one of the mechanisms for the transmission of culture in the context of multilingualism is proposed. Results and discussion. Based on the data on the dynamics of the results of school education and academic studies of bilingualism and multilingualism, a hypothesis was formulated about the correlation of children's performance in school with their multilingualism and pedagogical support. It is shown that in France over the past hundred years as natural bilingualism (French and regional languages) was overcome, the level of general education increased. Its decline began and continues as a result of the reverse process – the spread of multilingualism since the 1990s as a result of the acceleration of immigration, but also European integration, within the framework of which a political decision was made on the compulsory study of two foreign languages in all schools. In the absence of the necessary pedagogical support, a growing number of children, especially from low-income families, cannot withstand this psychological, intellectual and cognitive pressure. Conclusion. Political activity in education in France is carried out in weak cooperation with science. Despite the fact that even among specialists in multilingualism there are opposite opinions on various aspects of personality development in childhood and adolescence. Further research is needed, as well as the study of potential and latent risks of the current educational policy.

Authors: Nikolay V. Litvak

Direction: Philosophy

Keywords: bilingualism, multilingualism, multiculturalism, philosophy of multilingualism, France

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