The question of the day is from Amer Grine, from the group: French, reading and writing…

I would love to know how you learned to spell the words in French… It’s a very difficult spelling that contains many exceptions…How do you manage to have all these words in your head?

Here is my answer: 

Since a large proportion of native French speakers have significant difficulties with written French, your goal of excellence is commendable but virtually unattainable for three reasons:: 

1- difficulties and exceptions have been consciously generated over the centuries by the dominant class to classify and sort learners by levels and prevent access to knowledge and positions of responsibility for the working classes! 

2- Political and educational quarrels have accentuated these difficulties because of the lack of consensus between the “classics” and the “moderns”… Hence a sort of dual system that co-exists and alternately dominates according to the political party in power! 

3- the successive reforms and the “societal” evolutions of the language have most often tended to make French more complex, the last one in 1990 is a perfect illustration, I will have the opportunity to come back to it…

Moral : do your best and enjoy yourself without feeling guilty. Have fun with the French language, enjoy its musicality and above all share its art of living! 

To illustrate my point, here is a jubilant video by Muriel Gilbert who will give you a very instructive and edifying demonstration of a mechanism that has been at work for centuries. What she tells you deserves to be known in order to RELAX and RELAX with the difficulties of the French language to make it a playful gymnastics and not a perpetually vain torture! Sharing this vision with learners gives us a breath of fresh air without losing our taste for excellence.