Anorak News | Sauce Anglais

Sauce Anglais

by | 23rd, November 2004

‘WHEN we reported recently that America had despatched a team of hungry shellfish to devour the French coast, we observed that relations between the two countries had reached rock bottom.

Marcel Marceau

But now it appears they have further to fall as the Guardian tells us that employees at American-owned General Electric Medical Systems in France are taking the firm to court.

Their complaint is that being made to read manuals and communicate in English at work constitutes a form of discrimination.

Rather than being grateful to the Americans for giving French employees the chance to improve their language skills, lawyers for the union CGT will argue that the firm is in breach of the Toubon law, which says all documents vital to an employee must be in French.

“The company has an American ideology which has been accepted by a lot of the French managers, who think it is chic and looks good to speak English, even to their French colleagues,” says Jocelyn Chabart, a secretary at the company and someone unhappy at the prevailing culture.

Of course, what Jocelyn means to say is that these Vichyists, these collaborating managers, think it looks “cool” to speak English.

But she did at least see fit to speak to the paper, and so to us, in English, so we can forgive her this one slip-up.

But others cannot. And this case is, apparently, backed by dozens of French businesses, upset at what they see as the creeping Anglicisation of French business.

To say rien of the silent creep of those Louisiana crayfish…’

Posted: 23rd, November 2004 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink