Chapter 22. Managing Multilingual Content


  • Introducing multilingual content management

  • Enabling multilingual content

  • Authoring and managing localized content

  • Controlling multilingual content presentation

Drupal's roots are in a multilingual country in multicultural Europe. The product was born in Belgium—a place in which French, Dutch, and German are official languages. Given such a history, it should come as no surprise that the system supports managing and delivering content in multiple languages. This functionality did arrive somewhat late to the game, but it has been a part of the Drupal core since version 6.

In this chapter, I introduce key multilingual concepts and explore how you can achieve some common multilingual content management goals.

Understanding Key Concepts

At first glance, you might find yourself confused by the vocabulary related to multilingual content. Some terms exist that seem to overlap either partially or entirely in their meaning, and some common abbreviations may strike you as geeky jargon. To clarify things, I start this chapter with an overview of some important multilingual concepts.


See Chapter 10 for a discussion of all the key Drupal content management concepts.


All content items in Drupal are nodes. We use the terms content item and node interchangeably in this book, as does the Drupal community. When we talk about multilingual content items, we are most often talking about multilingual nodes.

Other forms of data exist in Drupal—users, ...

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