Ellen, Jonathan, et al.  – I think there are so many ways to overcome not having any language but English versus the times you actually need a foreign language that, for the most part, you don’t need one.

 

Back in 2006 for an AALL FCIL-SIS oral history, I said as follows, and the options have improved since too with not only INT-LAW, but also the IALLMembers and other listservs, other folks at your institution with foreign language skills, Google Translate, etc.  The foreign language skill does not have to be located in the foreign, comparative, and international law library position:

 

Q: How important is it to have knowledge of foreign languages for FCIL jobs?

…But, for the most part, there are certain things that can help you use foreign language materials without fluency. Catalog subject headings will be in English. There will be a whole bunch of clues about what the topic is even if the title is in a foreign language. You can also use bilingual dictionaries. There are also many people in the profession who have language skills and they can help you too. So, my short answer is that maybe foreign language skills are overrated.

 

I haven’t changed my mind…J

 

Cheers,

Lyo.

From: International Law Librarians List (Int-Law) [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Ellen Schaffer
Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2015 3:24 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [Int-Law] [SPAM] RE: "English-Only" FCIL Librarian?

 

I have to agree with Jonathan, Lyo, and wonder, as does Catherine, how you have come to feel this way. If anything, I have wished to be proficient in more languages during my career. The ones that I do know have proved very useful.

Ellen

 

On Wed, Mar 4, 2015 at 4:05 PM, Deane, Catherine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

Do tell, why do you think it is indispensable?

 

Best,

Ms. C. Deane

 

From: International Law Librarians List (Int-Law) [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Pratter, Jonathan
Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2015 3:02 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [Int-Law] "English-Only" FCIL Librarian?

 

Hello INT-LAW,

 

I would assert exactly the opposite.  Today more than one foreign language is indispensable in an FCILL.  Lyo & I could have a great debate on this.

 

Jonathan Pratter

Tarlton Law Library

University of Texas at Austin

 

From: International Law Librarians List (Int-Law) [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Lyonette Louis-Jacques
Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2015 2:49 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [Int-Law] "English-Only" FCIL Librarian?

 

Good day, INT-LAW!  I have a quick question.  If there is anyone on the listserv who is especially responsible for providing reference, collection development, cataloging, or acquisition services related to non-English-language legal materials, but is only proficient in English, please contact me off-list at [log in to unmask] (I have long asserted that now you don’t need a foreign language to be a foreign, comparative, and international law (FCIL) librarian, and I’d like to be proven correct).  Thanks, Lyo.

 

Lyonette Louis-Jacques

Foreign and International Law

Librarian and Lecturer in Law

D’Angelo Law Library

University of Chicago Law School

Email: [log in to unmask]

http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/law/

http://www.law.uchicago.edu/faculty/louis-jacques

http://www.linkedin.com/in/lyonette

http://twitter.com/lyolouisjacques

 

'Au milieu de l'hiver,

j'ai découvert en moi un invincible été.' /

"In the midst of winter I found there was,

within me, an invincible summer." - Camus

 

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******************************************************************* Int-Law - International Law Librarians List: Post messages to [log in to unmask] To unsubscribe send a message with unsubscribe int-law as the text of the message to [log in to unmask] An archive of postings are located at http://listserver.ciesin.columbia.edu/int-law.html. **DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed on this list are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of CIESIN, its staff, or CIESIN's sponsors.

 

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