Press release, 20.02.2023

Today sees the start of the third international Romansh Language Week ('Emna rumantscha'), an initiative promoted by the FDFA in cooperation with the canton of Graubünden and the Lia Rumantscha. This year's scheduled events include a cookery workshop in Bern involving federal councillor and head of the FDFA, Ignazio Cassis, president of the National Council, Martin Candinas, and other distinguished guests; a themed evening in London; and language courses in New York. The aim is to raise awareness abroad of multilingual Switzerland.

From Bern to the Swiss representations around the world: the annual rendez-vous with Romansh Language Week is an opportunity for the FDFA to make our country's linguistic diversity known abroad. "In 2022, the two school classes from Savognin and Scuol that I met in Bern shared with me a lot of ideas on how to promote their language and culture. They proved that our linguistic diversity gives rise to innovative ideas: and this year we wanted to develop one of those ideas in particular, together with our Swiss representations abroad," explains Cassis. The idea of a cookery workshop, organised in cooperation with the canton of Graubünden and the Lia Rumantscha, was the starting point for this third edition, in Switzerland and around the world.

In the kitchen in Bern, bringing Romansh culture to the world

Representatives of the Swiss embassies in Italy, France, Belgium and the UK, as well as the ambassadors of Spain and Austria in Switzerland, accepted the invitation to participate in the cookery workshop, run by Graubünden chef Andreas Baselgia. The aim: to discover more about Romansh culture, and then take that knowledge back to their own representations and countries. In addition to Mr Cassis and Mr Candinas, the event also included Jon Domenic Parolini, state councillor of the canton of Graubünden.


The Swiss embassy in the UK will waste no time in putting what it has learned into practice at a Romansh evening to be held in London during Wales Week on 27 February. With traditional dishes and information about the Romansh world, the embassy will link Swiss linguistic diversity to the preservation of the cultural heritage of Wales in the UK.

Learning Romansh in New York

Other Swiss representations have also taken steps to promote knowledge of the Romansh language and culture in their respective countries, in particular through events and digital content. The Swiss consulate general in New York is organising the first Romansh course in the city's history. The course with Chasper Pult will take place in a Brooklyn gallery where locals and others who are interested can learn more about the language and sample specialities from Switzerland. The consulate is also rerunning a series of 'crash-course in Romansh' videos made in iconic New York locations, including the subway, Times Square, Wall Street and the UN headquarters.

The FDFA and multilingualism

Romansh Language Week is part of a series of events – in addition to Multilingualism Week and the activities organised during the Italian, French and German language weeks – which underline the importance of multilingualism for national cohesion, but also for opening up to the outside world. Switzerland's linguistic diversity is indeed a characteristic of the country that is appreciated around the world.

The promotion of minority languages in Switzerland is also part of the structured, ongoing political dialogue that the head of the FDFA is conducting with the cantons of Graubünden and Ticino.


Photos and videos of the workshop can be downloaded at the following link:
https://share.dma.swiss/s/b6b2cHTrEdGKBAe


Communicaziun a las medias (rm)(pdf, 207kb)


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Last update 13.01.2023

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