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Off topic: François Rollande, or Françoise Hollande?
Thread poster: Tom in London

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2008)
Italian to English
May 5, 2012

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I am deriving great amusement from the inability of the English to pronounce "François Hollande".

Why do they find it so difficult?


 

Oliver Walter  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Ignorance of French May 5, 2012

I think, at least in some cases, it's because they never learned any French. Perhaps it's an embarrassment (resulting from some kind of fashion, even?) at speaking with sounds that don't occur in English. Even BBC reporters, are likely to pronounce his first name as though it were Françoise, and his surname more like Hollonde than Hollande. They must have had plenty of opportunity to hear the name spoken by French people, though perhaps not the same as in my case with the ability to receive several French TV channels via satellite.

Oliver


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 15:28
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
They're trying! May 5, 2012

Maybe those who give him a girl's name know that the H is not pronounced in French and think that the silent S has to be pronounced to make the liaison.

Where they get an R for Rollande is a mystery though.

The Americans did a pretty good job of pronouncing "Jean Dujardin" when he won the Oscar...

So might it be a matter of "I can't stand this guy so I'm darned if I'm going to make an effort to pronounce it right"?


Mind you, I know Brits who can't even say pizza!


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Ol Ond May 5, 2012

Oliver Walter wrote:

Perhaps it's an embarrassment


Well - it's pretty embarrassing to hear them mispronounce it !

I might have hoped that the BBC Pronunciation Unit (if it still exists) would have established how to say it correctly, were it not for the fact that right across the BBC, "Sarkozy" has been pronounced "Sar-Còsy" for the entire duration of Sarkozy's presidency!

And France is the neighbouring country. You'd think the Brits would take a little more interest....

[Edited at 2012-05-05 15:38 GMT]


 

Neil Coffey  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
French to English
+ ...
I noticed this too... May 5, 2012

Tom in London wrote:
I am deriving great amusement from the inability of the English to pronounce "François Hollande".

Why do they find it so difficult?


I assume you're referring to Question Time from the other night?

What struck me among the amusing range of variants that people came up with was that each one showed that, although there was an ignorance about how the name is actually pronounced, many speakers felt the need to "put on airs" in some way in trying to invent some "non-English" pronunciation, be it pronouncing the final -e as though it was an Italian surname, or not pronouncing the "d" because "final consonants aren't pronounced in French"...


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Not only QT.... May 5, 2012

Neil Coffey wrote:

I assume you're referring to Question Time from the other night?



No, Neil, I don't like QT and other TV programmes where a "rent-an-opinion" panel bestows their views on the passive spectator.

The mispronunciation happens everywhere, wherever French politics are discussed.

I'm concerned that we're going to get this for the next 5 years !

It's almost as bad as "lawn jerray" for "lingerie".....

[Edited at 2012-05-05 17:28 GMT]


 

Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Hebrew to English
I dunno..... May 5, 2012

The French aren't known for their flawless pronunciation of English either! It cuts both ways.

 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Yeah but May 5, 2012

Ty Kendall wrote:

The French aren't known for their flawless pronunciation of English either! It cuts both ways.


Yes but the BBC is (or was, once) supposed to be the Gold Standard for correct pronunciation.


 

Michele Fauble  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:28
Member (2006)
Norwegian to English
+ ...
French pronunciation May 5, 2012

For those who really want to pronounce it as in French, it's o lãd (the ã representing a nasalized a).




[Edited at 2012-05-05 17:52 GMT]


 

Michele Fauble  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:28
Member (2006)
Norwegian to English
+ ...
Putting on airs May 5, 2012

Neil Coffey wrote:

What struck me among the amusing range of variants that people came up with was that each one showed that, although there was an ignorance about how the name is actually pronounced, many speakers felt the need to "put on airs" in some way in trying to invent some "non-English" pronunciation, be it pronouncing the final -e as though it was an Italian surname, or not pronouncing the "d" because "final consonants aren't pronounced in French"...


This is exactly what Americans do when they pronounce j's and g's in foreign names and words as if they were French j's, for example "The Borgias" pronounced as 'the Borjas', with a French j.


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:28
English to German
+ ...
Sigh. May 5, 2012

Michele Fauble wrote:
This is exactly what Americans do when they pronounce j's and g's in foreign names and words as if they were French j's, for example "The Borgias" pronounced as 'the Borjas', with a French j.


Or Capri, as in Capri pants for summer. For whatever reason pronounced as Capreeeeeee. As it were French.
In most cases you can't even blame "the Americans" all across an entire continent, I would rather like to take a machine gun and teach some of those snooty little youngster pseudo-execs in advertising agencies with their lousy $34,000 / year but a mouth as wide as Lake Michigan that adding a foreign flair to any lower price segment product range doesn't necessarily involve wildly mixing up European countries, butchering languages and accents and sounding like an idiot.


Wow. Did I just commit a serious crime on English grammar. I will leave it as is for added flavor, though. icon_smile.gif

[Edited at 2012-05-05 19:40 GMT]


 

Françoise Vogel  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:28
English to French
+ ...
an + ç + oi + s May 5, 2012

the difficulties are too many ... and not only for the BBC.
icon_wink.gif


 

Paul Dixon  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 12:28
Portuguese to English
+ ...
British names in Brazil May 6, 2012

Here in Brazil they recently pronounced William Hague as William "Haggy".

 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:28
Spanish to English
+ ...
I liked it May 6, 2012

Nicole Schnell wrote:

In most cases you can't even blame "the Americans" all across an entire continent, I would rather like to take a machine gun and teach some of those snooty little youngster pseudo-execs in advertising agencies with their lousy $34,000 / year but a mouth as wide as Lake Michigan that adding a foreign flair to any lower price segment product range doesn't necessarily involve wildly mixing up European countries, butchering languages and accents and sounding like an idiot.


Wow. Did I just commit a serious crime on English grammar. I will leave it as is for added flavor, though. icon_smile.gif

[Edited at 2012-05-05 19:40 GMT]


Sometimes you need to be brutal for effect. I for one enjoyed that pithy outburst.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:28
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Françoise May 6, 2012

I have just heard Andrew Marr, on nationwide BBC television (a major Sunday morning political pundits show) saying "Françoise Hollande".

 
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