On 20 March, 2017 it is a day when the world celebrates the Day of the French language (Journée Internationale de la francophonie) or the “Day of Francophonie”. On this date the solemn opening of the Days of Francophonie in Moscow 2017 took place at the Library of foreign literature. Not only that day, but the entire period from 02 March to 21 April 2017 moscovited will have the opportunity to touch French culture in a variety of its forms.Stressing the importance of the event, the opening ceremony of the Days was visited by the Minister of culture of Russia Vladimir Medinsky. “For more than 100 years the French language was the language of the cultural community in Russia”, – he stressed. Days of Francophonie 2017 traditionally represent the cultural diversity of France and other French-speaking countries for residents of Russia. And 2018 will be the year of further strengthening of cooperation between Russia and France. This will be cross year of two languages: Russian in France and French in Russia.
In total, as of 2014, there were 274 million French-speaking people on 5 continents. 80 countries to date are included into international organization of Francophonie (Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie or OIF). And all this diversity is united in the representation of French-speaking culture in the Days of Francophonie, offering the audience images, books, movies, plays, and other cultural products in French-speaking countries of the world.
Days of Francophonie was prepared by the embassies of French speaking countries: France, Belgium, Canada, Switzerland and Francophone African countries (by the way, there we find more than half of the French-speaking people, and in the Days of Francophonie will be held the African party).
“It is power, because French is a living language”, – said the Ambassador of the French Republic to Russia Jean-Maurice Ripert, emphasizing that people are writing, acting, singing today in French. In the program of Francophonie, according to Mr. Ripert, this time will be allocated more space for the youth. There will be sports, gastronomic and cultural events. Francophonie, as always, will be the herald of the modern French values and global French culture.
Philosophical significance of cultural exchange on the basis of language was shown by the Ambassador of Switzerland in Russia Yves Rossier. He drew attention to the fact that the ancient Greeks had a deep understanding of the word. For example, Plato believed the words are a link between present and past. In scripture the word is the starting point of the universe. “The word is the Creator… the Word is always an act of friendship” – he said and stressed that we need to speak showing all the richness of the language. Days of Francophonie will be acquainted with French literature, theater and cinema, the latter will be provided with interlinear Russian translation.
About the possibilities of language as means of interchange spoke the Belgian Ambassador in Russia Jean-Arthur Regibeau. In conclusion, he called on the Russian as well as French-speaking people to “learn the language of each other”.
The events of the Days of Francophonie will be held in the French Institute, the Embassy of Belgium, the House of cinema, cinemas Rodina and Illusion, Art-cafe Durov, the Club Mumiy Troll, Linguistic University (MSLU), peoples ‘ friendship University (PFUR) and, of course, the most of the events will be held in the famous Francoteque.
Including 25 and March 26, 2017 12:00-18:00 in Francoteque will host the first “Fair of Francophone culture.” In addition to the sale of books in the French language, visitors will receive entertainment shows, street concerts and treats. And Francophone ambassadors will continue the tradition of presenting the Library of foreign literature books in the French language.
The idea of Francoteque at the all-Russian state library for foreign literature M. I. Rudomino arose during the meeting of Russian minister of culture Vladimir Medinsky and the Ambassador of France a year ago. Vadim Duda, Director General of the Library, said that “it was a very successful project,” which attracted interest of 5’000 visitors.