Monday, October 03, 2011
From here in French a few days ago:
About one in five people from the Midi-Pyrenees is able to talk in Occitan, according to a study published Thursday, showing the paradox of a regional language that is in decline but to which the inhabitants show a strong attachment. 14% of the population speaks Occitan well enough to have a simple conversation and 4% have a good proficiency, according to the survey condicted at the end of 2010 among 5000 people. One out of every two people has at least a nation of the language.
62% of those who speak or know something of Occitan say that they speak it less and less often. Among those 60+ years of age, 40% speak it perfectly. Among those between 15 and 29 years of age, only 3% do. Occitan is being transmitted less and less through the family. However, 74% of those interviewed say they are in favour of its preservation.
Occitan is the language that looks most like a Western European IAL (Mondial, Occidental, etc.), and its straightforward nature may be why I like it in particular compared to most other regional Romance languages I see. I suppose I would count as another one of the people that knows a bit of it / about it, supports its preservation, and can't speak it nor has any plans to learn it in the near future.