How to speak French like a Quebecker – Le québécois en 10 leçons

As you all know, I’m a huge fan of Quebec and especially of its French dialect (here’s a video of me in French, interviewing a Quebec girl about the differences) and the wonderful people there.

Because I genuinely tried to speak like them while living in Montréal, rather than rigidly sticking to the French I had learned in Paris, I was warmly welcomed and had one of the best summers of my life! La belle province is definitely among my top five most favourite places on earth.

So this is why I’m happy to have a guest post today from a Quebecker, who has just published what looks to be the go-to-guide for anyone who wants to truly finally get their teeth into this wonderful dialect.

Alexandre Coutu (aka arekkusu or alexandrec on language forums) is a polyglot, translator, language coach, course designer and occasional interpreter. He just published a course on spoken Québec French called Le québécois en 10 leçons. Today he’ll share some of the most prominent features of the dialect, and we’ve included audio samples so you can get a true taste for the how it truly sounds, as spoken by Quebecers!

Over to you Alexandre!

Why is French different in Quebec?

For most of us, the first encounter with a language happens in a textbook. This cold and clinical introduction sometimes leads people to believe that languages are set in stone, when in fact, it’s quite the opposite: just like glaciers that are made of ice, yet fluctuate and change shape constantly, languages are liquid and continuously evolve.

One long term effect of that evolution is that languages that are spoken over large territories or in distant countries tend to evolve into different varieties that can sometimes cause the speakers — and the learners — to have problems understanding each other.

The case of French in Québec provides us with an interesting example. Over 400 years ago, when the first French settlers came to what they called “La Nouvelle-France”, most of these settlers came from regions North-West of Paris, such as Picardy, Normandy and Burgundy. The French spoken in these regions was considered to be the purest, and most resembled the King’s French.

However, political changes in France caused Paris’ dialect to become the country’s prestige language variety; it’s that dialect that eventually formed the basis of today’s standard French. Meanwhile, the French spoken in what was later to become Québec continued to slowly evolve in its own direction.

The close ties that France and Québec have shared to this day have allowed the two linguistic communities to continue to understand each other, particularly in writing and in their respective standard forms, but there is no denying that a large number of differences in the informal language sometimes make mutual comprehension a struggle.

There are people who have the rather elitist vision that we should all speak the way we write and who wish Québécois didn’t exist. Unfortunately, many French language teachers hold similar views, and as a result, students are often left unable to understand “the man on the street”, even after years of study. This presents a particular challenge for students. As unbelievable as it sounds, many French classes in Canada use material geared towards France rather than Québec. So much for national unity.

A lot of beginning students of French are curious to know just how different Québec French is from France French. Some have likened the degree of difference to that of British vs. American English. This comparison could be considered valid if we only took the written standard language into account, but it is too weak an analogy when it comes to the spoken language.

Visitors with a good level of standard French will no doubt be understood in Québec, but without any knowledge of Québécois French, they will continue to be viewed as outsiders.

Most Québécois will try to use standard French with you, but it may feel a bit awkward and tiring for them. However, the Québécois will quickly warm up to anyone who shows an interest in their language. The origin of the visitor is irrelevant, it’s the interest the person has in the Québec culture and language that will really open doors.

This is a point many English Canadians or other visitors often fail to understand. If you can use a bit of their language, they will immediately feel at ease, relieved that they can let their guard down, speak naturally and be genuine, and many will take you under their wing and try to help you learn.

Example dialogue, using real Quebec French

To give you a general idea of the kinds of things you hear in Québec, let’s imagine that you are visiting Québec City. You are on the streets of le Vieux-Québec, looking lost. A stranger stops his car and asks:

J’peux-tu t’aider, mon gars?

  • Roxanna

    Oh this is wonderful!! J’ai eu de la misère trying to find resources to specifically learn Quebec French, as everything seems to be ‘standard’ or France French. Do you think this will be available as an e-book in the future? Or is it already?

  • balou67

    I think I never laughed that much reading a post here. As a France french, I’ve been loving québécois for long and I’m a little used to it (friends online, rare tv series, Céline Dion having fun, or been laughed at (gently, she’s loved here) on tv).

    But still, I learnt something and have to warn learners :in France french, “il a l’air fin” means “he looks stupid”. Not as an insult to someone you don’t like, but to mock/get a little angry at someone who accidentally did something wrong and thus feels stupid indeed. “Ah ben t’as l’air fin maintenant !”

    Thanks for the laughs, even if you don’t see what’s fun, that’s what makes some of us love québécois and indeed, it’s a cool dialect with people way more cool and open-minded than in France (at least from what we see on tv).

    • alexandrec

      “Il a l’air fin” has that meaning as well in Québec. However, in other contexts, it means gentil: mon ami français est ben fin ;)

  • Rua

    Every time I hear people from Québec speak French I am completely confused. Between the accent and the unusual grammar I’ve never been able to make sense of much. Having spent 7 years learning standard French I figure it’s about time I pick up some Québécois as I only live 2 hours into New York from Québec. This could end up being a series of really fun day trips.

    • tember2

      Me too, although oddly when I watch Radio-Canada’s news broadcast, I find the language is much clearer than Parisian French (e.g. 20h on TF1).

      • 403CDN

        To be honest, Radio-Canada is close to international French, (for the news broadcasts at least, not so much for the TV shows). Try listening to TVA, or LCN(TVA’s news network), there’s a noticeable difference.

        • Jacob De Camillis

          Radio-Canada indeed uses a neutral international French, with the exception of guest speakers who will often speak in a variety of patois–Québecois, Acadian, Swiss, etc.

    • alexandrec

      Let us know how your next trip turns out once you are armed with this new knowledge!

  • Nadia

    Nice! As someone who moved to Quebec, and had some French courtesy of my mother, I found it very confusing at first. I’ve grown to love this language though, although I still have trouble really getting into it (I live in Montreal, and it is extremely easy to get away with spekaing English). I took part in a government French course, and was sent away to Chicoutimi for five weeks, and I loved learning about “Quebec-isms” like “chum”, “ma Blonde” (my girlfriend) “char”, “y a” for “Il a”, etc.

    Great to know this book exists, and I’m happy to have also discovered your site. Saw your Tedx talk as well. Great job. Very inspiring!

    • alexandrec

      Nadia, get the book, and start making some friends from the other side of town ;) Joking apart, a lot of people are looking for a book like this but are unaware that it exists, so do spread the news!

  • microsnout

    As a keen student of québécois French I have been looking for a course like this for years but I knew there was nothing out there beyond simple phrase books, most of which were not very useful. I have learned a lot of this stuff already using Benny’s #1 resource HB 2.0 (my human québécois language partner) but I still plan to devour this book when it arrives as I will be heading to Quebec Nov 1. I ordered a second copy which I plan to give to a good friend, native of France and professor at Alliance Française who teaches French here in Canada but alas, knows far less about québécois than I do – I had to explain something I said just yesterday.
    Thanks Arekkusu

    • alexandrec

      I hope your friend reads it and is able to answer the students’ questions. Thank you, Microsnout!

  • Sprachprofi

    Québécois French has long since been my favourite language to listen to. Like microsnout, I learned quite a lot from language partners, but I still learned stuff from this book. After doing the exercises, I also feel more confident that I can produce Québécois myself. The dialogs are pure genius, entertaining while introduce all important Québécois words and structures, and the explanations are very clear. I particularly like that there are free recordings for all the dialogs, all the vocabulary items, all the example sentences and all the exercises, so that it’s easier to get used to the differences in pronunciation.
    Way to go, Alexandre!

  • iguanamon

    North Americans should learn Québécois because, for most Canadians and Americans, that is the variety of French they are most likely to encounter. In the US there are large immigrant communities in the New England states. South Florida turns into “Petit Québec” in the winter months.

    When I grew up in the upper south of the US I could tune into the French language Radio-Canada 50,000 watt CFO Toronto radio station on my car radio in the evenings loud and clear 700 miles away. If I ever decide to learn French, I will definitely be using Arekkusu’s book once I reach intermediate level.

    Well done, Alexandre!

  • Roberto Vitae

    My only criticism, is that the examples you use are very working-class Quebec French. A good portion of Quebeckers use speak on a more sophisticated level, and would never use words like “icittte” “frette” etc.. It’s still very valuable, but as in any society, there are various levels of language.

    • Benny Lewis

      The kind of stuff in this article, many of which I had to learn in the street spontaneously, and slower than if it had been explained to be clearly, are what I absolutely needed in social environments with young middle and working class people in Montreal.

      It’s the same in Ireland. Upper class people use less dialect and slang, but if you never learn this, you’ll only ever be able to associate with that upper class.

      It depends on what you plan on using it for. If you are going to Montreal on a business trip, then “International French” will serve you fine nearly the entire time. If you go to a Couchsurfing party (as I did frequently) with lots of 20 somethings who are drinking, then sophisticated French simply isn’t enough.

  • angela

    i love this:). when i travel in france, my bizarre blend of anglo-quebecois ( thanks to my english mom and french dad, english schooling and french boyfriends ) illicits nothing but smiles and chuckles of “c’est sympa”. you so captured it here.

  • Amelie B-O

    I’m a native Québécois French speaker and even I find this post hilarious.

    Like someone mentioned, this ‘dialect’ is spoken mostly by ‘middle-class workers’. I think it’s very important to know that this ‘dialect’ exists but also that most of us do not speak like that.

    Of course, we do say “Y’a l’air fin!’ and ‘J’suis avec mon chum!’ but it’s part of our dialect and it part of how we pronounce stuff but there’s still a distinction to make.

    And yes… even if I’m a native speaker, I think Celine Dion sounds funny when she speaks French.

  • Guillaume

    Some comments on this article as well as other comments I have seen (I am Quebecois)
    1. We do say Quebecois to designate the French-speaking population of Quebec. ‘Quebecker’ is now meant to encompass all residents, no matter their language of predilection).
    2. Quebecois up until recently have been mostly coming from the working class, and yes, most still do speak like this. Someone who says it’s a minority might believe that their bourgeois surroundings are the norm, but frankly my guess is that they are not in touch with reality.
    3. ‘International French’ is a weird concept and I don’t think any such thing really exists. They do use a rather peculiar pronunciation in Radio-Canada newscasts, but it is still instantly recognizable as ‘Canadian’.
    4. I have met a girl in Greece who had been learning French for over a year (and was wonderful at it) and she was surprised how easier I am to understand than Parisians. Of course I am from an educated class and I was paying attention to my articulation but not going out of my way about it. So Parisians who believe that they have no accent because they speak the pure French… should know better.
    5. This article just goes to show how complicated our vernacular is to outsiders! I am curious about these lessons that are supposed to make this easy to grasp…

    • alexandrec

      Thank you for your comment, Guillaume. I agree with everything you say, particularly about the fact that people often have the distorted vision that “other people speak like this, but not I”. Many people have told me that after reading passages from the book, only to use the exact same phrase a few minutes later.

      Merci encore pour ton commentaire et à bientôt!


  • Maxime Poulin

    I’m a french Canadian, speaking Québecois, and few years ago, I was speaking with my fellow quebecois friends in a restaurant in Manhattan then someone at the table next to us (American tourists in NYC with a southern accent) asked us if we were german. A month later in Las Vegas, Nevada, in a line-up, same question again! I find it a bit odd that people with no, or very little language knowledge mixed Québecois french and German…

    • alexandrec

      I’ve even been told it sounded Chinese with all the là, là… Few people can distinguish languages they’ve never heard.

    • Caulaincourt

      Franchement, ça ne me surprend pas du tout. I’m FC and the same thing happened to my uncle in Virginia Beach (he’s an avid golfer). I think its the French “R” (also found in German) plus all the “aé”s and “ao”s of our accent which also happen to be stereotypical German sounds. The French and especially FC vowel répertoire is closer to that of the Germanic languages than the Latin ones (eu=ö, u=ü, doublets a/â, é/è, etc)

      I love Germanic languages (Dansk!) so I’m rather happy with the comparison.

  • Maggie Kelly

    Augustino and I had spent months working on a project for the company we both worked for. The long hours, cold take outs and working weekends created a bond between us, but Augustino didn’t look exactly like my ‘type’. He was a little plump and was balding. Two days after presenting our project to the Board of Directors and getting a pat on the back from the boss, I left for a two week’s vacation in Alabama where my sister and her husband live. I was surprised when I found myself thinking a lot about Augustino. I returned to work early hoping to see him, but he and his girlfriend had gone away on vacation in Mexico. I felt really scared. I called you [Christine] because I wanted reassurance from an expert that my feelings were normal and things would get better with time. I spent the next two months working on what is important for me in a relationship and the type of partner I was looking for. I created my five lists, my action plan and lived my life as if I was in a loving and happy relationship. At work, I tried to avoid direct contact with as much as was possible. One Friday night, like I had done eight Friday nights in a row, I set my dinner table for two, dressed up and put a romantic number on the stereo. I heard a knock on the door and almost fainted when I saw who it was. Augustino had broken up with his girlfriend two months ago after he told her he thought he was in love with me – and I didn’t even know. Who could have thought this was how it would all end. We will be getting married in the summer of 2013. Christine, I love you so much. he help me to get out of all this and help me to let my wedding pass away Thank you.

  • YankeeTranslator

    Benny, I’d really like to see a similar post on Cajun French.

  • alexandrec

    Sometimes you have to make mistakes to learn from them ;)

  • alexandrec

    I’m the same!

  • alexandrec

    And what would that external influence be?

  • Brian

    Cool article and, much like Benny’s posts on Irish English, very much needed. People need to accept that there’s no right or wrong version or dialect of a language. If anything, I’d trust a local more than a textbook as they are the people living through the language in that area. These differences simply are what they are, and if you move to such a region you should do some advance research on the regional peculiarities. It always bothered me in Ireland when foreigners complained about having a hard time understanding us. Well, of course you will if all you listen to are Londoners and Americans and then go to live in Cork! :) Us saying something is ‘deadly’ or ‘class’ instead of ‘great’, as your textbook told you, doesn’t make those expressions any less valid.

  • From_the_NorthCountry

    Hi Alexandre
    Is your book sold in any Montreal stores? I don’t really want to pay $6 for shipping.

    • alexandrec


      The book will be available at Librairie Michel Fortin, 3714, rue Saint-Denis, sometime towards the end of next week. To make sure, just call 514-849-5719 to confirm before you go.


  • Messê

    A creole is not a local regionalisms that have been tainted (and oh, as a linguist, how I hate the idea of linguistic shift being a matter of “tainting”). A creole is a blending of two languages (or more, but usually two), usually with one language providing most of the vocabulary and the other providing most of the grammar.

    An example of a French creole would be Haitian creole (French + native languages), and English could be seen as a French creole that became a language (you can see the Germanic grammatical structure inherited from Anglo-Saxon along with French’s contribution to vocabulary). Quebecois French lacks a second language making major contributions to either vocabulary or grammar; it’s a matter of linguistic isolation that caused it to move along a different path.

  • AndrooMahtin

    You’re not the one voicing the sound clips, are you!? I heard the first few and couldn’t believe how authentic it sounded! But then i got to the female sound clip and started to wonder if you were really the one doing the voicings, lol. If it’s you, then I am VERY impressed; I’m from the Montreal area, and that is exactly — to a tee — how people speak French here… although we call the dialect ‘joual’.

    • alexandrec

      Benny is not speaking on the recordings, unfortunately. I, the author, did the recordings — well, for the male voices, anyway ;)

  • alexandrec


  • Philippa

    I loved this. Do you know the CD “Les lettres rouges” by Lynda Lemay, in which she does a quick explanation of Quebecois French for a French French audience?

  • Josh Andallo

    What I think Alex was trying to mean about “national unity” is that while there is a keen interest in learning French throughout the entire country (I’m from BC, and I guess you could say I’m a Francophile of sorts), some schools have a curriculum that is geared toward what is spoken in France (probably owing to the fact that they obtain textbooks from the States, and their French curriculum is also geared towards the European variety of the language). Yes, you do learn some nuances between the Quebec and France dialects, but it’s very, very minuscule (one example that comes to mind is “manquer” and “s’ennuyer de;” Quebec tends to use the latter when saying “I miss so-and-so,” but in my French classes, all I knew until very recently was the former and its unique inversion to mean “I miss so-and-so”).

  • Veronica

    Alexandre, please sell it as an ebook, as well! I am a future graduate in Canadian Studies (Master’s program) and I know I’m going to appreciate this. The problem is that I’m from the far Romania and the shipment would double the price. Thanks!

  • alexandrec

    My reply was not political at all; national unity has always been a difficult issue in Canada and it seems logical to me that if anyone is going to learn or teach French for that purpose, it should be Canadian French, not European French.

  • Aaron

    I was born and raised in California and have lived in San Francisco for the last 12 years. I lived in France however for just under 2 years during college. Before that, I had a roommate in college from St Foy. I visited his family for 3 weeks in 1996, then again in 1999. I’ve been to Quebec another 4 times and I always have trouble getting the Montrealais to respond to me in Quebecois (in Quebec City, people are much more patient and willing to teach me Quebecois). I have bought glossaries of terms, but they are so hard to know which ones are more common, etc…

    I now have a Quebecoise roommate who is sweet and speaks with me a little but I have a difficult time understanding her still. I’m so excited to work on it with this book.

  • John Barber

    The example dialog is fantastic. I really wish the Quebec government would just hire you to create a full multi-level curriculum just like this. It would help us Anglo-North Americans so much!

    • alexandrec

      Thank you for the kind comments. I shall await their offer ;)

  • Derek Reichert

    It says the book is about spoken Quebecois, is written Quebecois just like Standard French? (with the exception of the local terms, like dejeuner and auto).

    • alexandrec

      In the best case scenario, written Québec French is indeed standard French. Many Québécois authors are famous around the world. Typically, the features that make up spoken Québec French are not written, unless it is done intentionally. In more informal situations, though, more of the spoken language may permeate, such as when friends write emails to each other. Some linguists have even suggested that most Québécois are bidialectal, knowing both standard and Québécois French and being to switch between the two depending on the situation.

      • Benny Lewis

        Are there slight usage differences though? I have gotten mixed answers from people on whether or not the question and exclamation marks should have a space inserted before them or not in Quebec. In standard French the rule is to always have a space.

        Also, I think they are more likely to accent capital letter vowels in Quebec than in France, like ETUDIER vs ÉTUDIER in signs and the like.

        Perhaps these differences are bidialectal as you said. In Ireland we write pretty much the same as the Brits, but have our own quirks for sure, which are not used in formal situations.

        • alexandrec

          Typographical rules are indeed different: we don’t put spaces before ! and ? and we are pickier about having accents on capital letters. The French also tend to be a little bit more liberal when it comes to capitalizing things that technically shouldn’t be (like months, days, etc.).

          As for usage… some words do have a different meaning or else different words may be used for the same things, similar to how truck and lorry differ in English. Our relationship to English is also different: in formal writing, we tend to be a lot stricter about avoiding English words — things like ferry, pressing and cool attitude are unheard of, and other words like parking are frowned upon in writing while they won’t have that must-be-avoided connotation in Europe.

          All in all, written French from France and Québec probably differ in a similar fashion to how written English from the UK or the US differ. And obviously, the more you describe your own reality, the more your language reflects who you are.

          In a blog, it’s probably going to be quickly noticeable whether the blogger is French or Québécois, but in a well-written text or novel, it’s going to be subtler.

  • Vincent

    I plan to move to Quebec in the next six to ten months and I want to master Quebec French so I can fit into Quebec culture and society. I was born in France to a Congolese family, we speak Standard French (I’m mostly English-speaking) but I have a fondness for Quebec.

  • Ann

    Hi ! I am French-Canadian and I loved your analysis ! So dead-on ! However, vocabulary varies a lot from one area to another. Here in the Eastern Townships, when we say ‘j’ai la chienne’, this means we are scared of something. However, in Gaspesie, ‘j’ai la chienne’ means : I am tired. In regards to ‘embarquer’, we often say ‘monte !’ when asking someone to get in the car. In some regions, people say ‘accomodation’ and other say ‘dépanneur’ when referring to a 7-11 or convenience store. I am French-Canadian from Sherbrooke and I often have trouble understanding some people from the Saguenay…but I love their accent ! But maybe it is me who has an accent ? LOL ! Here in the Townships we use a lot of English words, as many of us have been raised in bilingual families. My grandma used to tell me ‘mets tes running shoes’ or ‘oublie pas tes overalls’. This was quite colorful. She would call flour ‘de la fleur’ (when cooking) or ‘pomme de pin’ when referring to a pineapple.

    I find that the accent and vocabulary differences in Quebec are similar to what we see in the US…The Boston, South Carolina or New York accents…quite different but so interesting. I agree with Roberto…Getting in the ‘char’ and eating poutine are clichés…Ok, poutine was invented in Quebec but it’s only one of our fast-food choices…not the national meal !

  • Al in Da Bronx

    This is really great! I live in NYC, so I’m not too far from Québec, and I’ve always known that
    Québec French is different from France French, but never appreciated how
    much until now. You really do have different grammar, syntax, and
    vocabulary. In listening to the above audio, I’m amazed at how many
    words that are spelled out are swallowed up when spoken! I am myself interested in learning Québec French particularly from the language history point of view, and if anyone were to give a formal course in spoken Québecois, I would be on the next plane up! I am quite surprised and disappointed that, for all the defensive measures that the Québec government is taking regarding French, that there is no promotion of the native spoken language. Wouldn’t there be a danger that the native speech would die out if nothing is done? (I think you should open a school!!!) But short of a course, can you recommend any way that a non-native can actually spend time there, perhaps several months to a year, perhaps pay to live with a teacher in a remote village and actually learn this wonderful language?…

  • Olivier Leclerc

    Wow ! Vraiment je suis bein content que aime le Québec et les gens de la place, la langue et la culture. Si un jour tu remet les pieds en sols QUébecois. Je serais très heureux de te permettre d’en faire un peu le tour. J’ai habité dans pratiquement tout les regions Quéebecoises et aussi dans le nord du Québec a Baie-James. La ou le soleil en été ce couche a 22:00 le soir et se leve a 3;00. L’hiver c’est mortel crée moé ;)

    PS: si des fois tu veux parler en québecois je serais tres heureux de le partager

  • Jessica VandenBrink

    I only Speak English, but i would love to learn to speak Quebec French. My boyfriend and his family are from Montreal so their first language is French. I’m not sure how i would go about learning to speak Quebec French though since i don’t know how to speak French at all. I was wondering if i could have some input on this?? Thank you!! :)

  • The Billster

    I found that all I need in Québec is to tack “là” on the end of everything and I’m in; even english stuff.
    Also very helpful is “the Anglo guide to survival in Québec” [sic]. The chapter Le Instant French explains all. And it simplifies so much. No longer do you need to know tenses like the l’interior posterior or le future bypass.
    On pages 32 and 33 one finds a table of profane equivalencies, a most useful tool for swearing and cursing à la langue des gars au Quibek, là. You will discover it’s okay to use “fucké” to describe something that’s broken.

  • Vincent Alexandre

    I’m going to enroll in a program this summer for Quebec French…in Quebec. Stay with a host family, merge into the culture, and society and such. Looking forward to it!

  • disqus_3bEJGdl4eO

    In Quebec City where I’m from, you definitely won’t hear that often: Pis, t’aimes-tu mon char? Si t’as frette, dis-moé-lé, gêne-toé pas!

    In smaller regions you will… but so what? In France, outside of Paris, do you know how they speak? And that’s quite fine too.

    Also, this comment is extremely offending “Most Québécois will try to use standard French with you” WOW!! We use standard, proper French on a daily basis, à l’écrit comme à l’oral!

  • Mart

    C’est vrais que notre langue est spécial, mais je suis contant qu’y ait des gens qu’ils veulent bien apprendre notre langue :D

  • Des Goold

    Alexandre, Do you know if there a similar book for English speakers to use? It’s been a long while since I studied France French and don’t really want to re-learn (fluently) in order to then learn some Quebecois. I’m hoping to find a book on conversational Quebecois for English speakers (with some French language background – you would have to have some, I realize). Our company just expanded into Quebec and I would like to learn how to begin conversing (even in relatively simple terms) with my new colleagues>

    • alexandrec

      Hello there!
      I don’t know of any such book. Teaching Québécois without teaching Standard French (or while teaching it) would be quite a challenge. That’s why I settled on writing the book in French for people with a basic knowledge of Standard French. However, the way the book is organized, you can search expressions and words at the end of the book and find the corresponding entry or explanation. This might be useful for you. Another option would be to give the book to a tutor would could use it to coach you.
      Best of luck,

  • Sara

    Wow, I didn’t know that there was such a big difference !! But I think if I start talking Quebecoise french, my french teacher will murder me ;)

  • emma

    wow this is great! no wonder I cant understand it though, I was taught by a French person. its so different! now I have it explained, thank you!

  • Janet Lingel Aldrich

    I’ve been on lang-8 for awhile. The problem there is that most of the corrections I’ve gotten are “regular” French and not Quebecois. I’ve also been hanging around OffQC. I’m interested in looking into this book (glad it’s an e-book!)

    I wondered, too — I have friends in the Estrie and one of them has done a number of videos for his company. He doesn’t sound anything like this (and he doesn’t sound “French” (meaning European) either. Is the Joual pronunciation used in the dialog confined mostly to Montréal? If I wanted to live around Sherbrooke, for instance, would it help me there?

    • alexandrec

      If there are Québécois users correcting your texts on lang-8, I’d expect them to use Standard French with some regional differences (think truck vs. lorry) — unless you are specific in your request and you are using a spoken register.

      I believe the pronunciation used in the dialogue could be heard on TV (sitcoms, comedy, etc.) and in most of the province, although there are regional accents and variations as well. I have every reason to believe that this is stuff you could hear in Sherbrooke as well. I’ve had friends from there in the past and our use of the language was the same as far as I could tell.

      If a Québécois were recording a corporate video, I’d expect him or her to use more or less standard French, albeit with a Québécois accent.

  • Sharonacles

    Oh man, thank you so much for making this! There are meager resources for learning the Québec accent and slang. I have been looking for years as, even though I live in Québec, I find it hard to pick up the accent and understand slang. Most Québecers I know don’t really know Acadian French that well to be able to tell me the differences and I find that slowing down their speech helps a bit, but they seem to resent it. haha I can’t wait to study this!

  • Food_Stuff

    A friend took a French immersion course in Québec city and the teacher was completely baffled when asked about the differences between québécois and francais.