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The University of Southampton
Languages, Cultures and LinguisticsPart of Humanities

Emeritus Professor Mike Kelly shines light on languages after Brexit

Published: 5 September 2017
Professor Mike Kelly

Professor Mike Kelly, Emeritus Professor of French at the University, explores the language needs of the UK for life outside the EU in his forthcoming book "Languages after Brexit: How the UK speaks to the world".

The book brings together leading researchers on issues of policy for languages in key areas, including politics, economics, business, science and education, and Professor Kelly said of the work:

"The UK has always needed people who speak other languages and understand other countries. Now that negotiations to leave the EU have begun, we have more need than ever of such people. Without them, our country will struggle to renegotiate its cultural and commercial relationships with the rest of Europe, and will struggle to build new relationships with other international partners. At the same time, the result of the Referendum vote has encouraged a spate of public hostility towards languages other than English. This has made it more difficult to develop our country’s capacity to engage with the wider world, just when we have greatest need. How are we to resolve this conundrum? This book aims to spell out what the language needs of the UK are in the new climate. It assesses our current state of preparedness and then suggests steps that need to be taken to improve our capability in languages and help our country to thrive in the new international environment."

The book will be published by Palgrave Macmillan in the autumn of 2017.

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