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Differences between French in Quebec and France: accent, attitude & curse words [vidéo en français]

| 115 comments | Category: particular languages, travel

Two years after my experience in Paris, I decided to get back into French and move to Montréal (in 2007). It was a drastically different experience to my time in Paris! Everyone was so incredibly nice to me, people were much less formal and more open to making friends, and they especially had more patience to help me with my French.

Montréal and Quebec in general are among the most favourite places I’ve lived in, in the last decade of travelling. I still think very fondly back to my time there with my amazing and hilarious flatmates (Je m’ennuie de vous, Marie-Ève et Marlène!!), the parties, the Jazz fest, Juste pour rire and the amazing city and its open mind and warmth.

I especially liked Saint Jean (which I went to Quebec city for) – an incredible celebration which is comparible to other world festivals, but with the bonus of everyone coming up to you and wishing you Bonne Saint-Jean! Even the Carnival in Brazil didn’t have that level of interaction!

The Quebec spirit is one I definitely agree with and I highly recommend people go there (especially Americans due to proximity and likely easier bureaucratic visa etc. process) if they’d like to learn French.

Interview en français avec ma Couchsurfeuse Geneviève

The reason I’m bringing this up now, even though I’m in Amsterdam, is because I’ve been hosting a Québécoise for the last couple of days via Couchsurfing. As I’ve described in detail before, I use Couchsurfing as a means to maintain and practice all my languages on a regular basis, no matter where I am.

Since it’s been four years since I’ve lived in a French speaking country, I should technically have totally forgotten my French, but luckily I have been maintaining it thanks to hosting francophones.

Geneviève agreed to let me test out my new camera (which I’ll be using to interview those I host and come across in my travels in various languages in future) and ask her to share some thoughts on Quebec and Quebec French, and even share some frustration we both had Parisians (which luckily hasn’t been my experience elsewhere in France).

[Correction: She said that outside of Quebec they only speak English, which is of course forgetting about New Brunswick and many strong francophone communities throughout Canada.]

Hopefully you liked the questions I asked her! The 13 minute video goes as follows:

  • Intro 0:00 – 0:36
  • [0:37] What’s different between Quebecers and the French?
  • [2:21] Some unfairness about preference for English in Montreal and the need to preserve French
  • [3:27] How foreigners are very much welcomed in French-speaking Quebec
  • [4:00] The history of where Quebec curse words come from and some examples
  • [5:30] Things to do to be more Quebecois
  • [6:27] Difference in use of “les anglais”
  • [6:53] Differences in how “a” is pronounced in some words
  • [7:41] Spending time with Quebecers to get used to the accent
  • [8:11] General vocabulary that is different in Quebec French
  • [10:55] Geneviève’s travels and thoughts on travelling to keep an open mind
  • [12:41] Wrapping up and me saying “I miss Quebec” in Quebec French

Hopefully my rusty (but still fluent) French doesn’t slow the interview down too much ;) As you can imagine, my preference will be to share interesting videos like this rather than using my languages as a dancing monkey for no good reason. This is what languages are all about for me; interesting conversations with people. Expect more of these to feature on the blog ;)

Any thoughts on how different Quebec French sounds? Have any of you been to la belle province? Let me know in the comments below!

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  • http://tomfrompoland.com Tom from Poland

    Very interesting video, despite my poor French I understand a lot :-)

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Glad to hear it!

  • Liam

    Vive la Quebec!

    • deixmachinis

      *le* Québec

  • Aaron

     Is French in Quebec compared to France like comparing American English to British/Australian English?  Over 90% of the words are the same, but pronunciation,  some spelling, and slang are different?  Elevator/Lift    trunk/boot  pants/trousers and spelling like tire/tyre?  

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      From Wikipedia:
      If a comparison can be made, the differences between both dialects are probably larger than those between standard American and standard British English, similar to the differences between Brazilian Portuguese and that of Portugal, but far less than those between standard German and Swiss German

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Quebec is a neat place! Check it out ;)

  • http://twitter.com/adjusting adjusting

     Just a small correction: She stated that Quebec is the only bilingual province, and that outside Quebec all of Canada is english.Actually, the province of New Brunswick is officially bilingual, with about 33% of its population being francophone. There are over a million french canadians outside of Quebec, with francophone communities located everywhere from Prince Edward Island to British Columbia.

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Very true! I will be going to Vancouver briefly in June and I hope to find some francophones there :)

    • Max_hydrogen

       True but those minorities can’t actually function inn French at all. There’s even a fascist group in New Brunswick called The Anglo Society that want’s suppress French rights. The only bilingual province in Canada is Québec, even though it is officially unilingual. Canadian bilingualism is a joke!

      • LittleStudent

        Quebec bilingualism is a joke. Obviously Nova Scotian Acadians do function in French. If we didn’t, we wouldn’t have Francophone public schools and a University where immigrants from all over go to learn French. I’m a waitress, French is heard all across Nova Scotia.

        • Jonathan Rand

          waitresses are all hoes bitch, slutty hoe

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    I’ve edited the post to compensate for any mistakes with a warning before the video ;)

    • Max Hydrogen

       Saying that French is a minority in relation to English is like saying Welsh is a minority in relation to English. Québec is not Canada. French is the language of Québec and what’s this about victimization? Why do YOU invoke such a thought? Maybe because it’s true…

  • Justin

    That was really interesting! I have often wondered about the different between Canadian French and French French. I am interested in learning French and it looks like Quebec might be the place to do it! 

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      As I said in another comment, it’s better to diversify your French by learning a non-standard (i.e. non-Parisian) accent. As well as this it’s easier to move to Montreal and live there for so many other reasons. Finding work is a challenge if you don’t have French (despite what Geneviève said in the video, based on people I knew, it was actually just as hard to get a job if you are an English speaker with no French).

      Although my French was good enough to work there, I had my Internet-based translation work at the time.

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Haha thanks! Although speakers from France will confirm that I was adapting a lot of Geneviève’s speaking patterns. I’m kind of caught in the middle. French speakers swear that I’m Quebecois when they meet me (which is so flattering; it’s as good as calling me a native!) and Quebecers tell me I sound way too French. What I’d like to do is switch effortlessly between both accents when required, as I do in Spanish.

    I would highly recommend you go up to Quebec to work on your French! The thing to remember is that even though linguistically you may have it easier in Paris, culturally you will get a lot of resistance there if you go somewhere like Paris. They really do not have much patience for learners!

    Either go to Quebec (which would be logistically so much easier for you) or go to Belgium, Switzerland or the south or other parts of France. Paris is best left for tourist trips, to be appreciated for its history and aesthetic beauty.

    It will be a bit of a challenge at first, but I can assure you that I understand Geneviève pretty much as good as I understand any Parisian, and I just spent 3 months in Montreal! However, if you *just* learn Parisian French, you may never understand the many other wonderful dialects around the world.

  • Mary

    Thanks for this video Benny! When I met people from Québec, I actually thought that Québéquois was more influenced by English than metropolitan French. I can think of a couple of expressions I heard my friend saying: “mopper” (passer la serpillère in French from France), clearly coming from “to mop”, and “cellulaire”. In any case I think they’re doing a great and intelligent job in using French as much as they can. Can’t say the same about Italian!

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

       As stated in the comment by Julien, there are some anglicisms in Quebec French as well, but they otherwise do a good job of keeping things as French as possible. Italian certainly doesn’t care so much about such things.

  • http://twitter.com/JulienAUL Julien

    Really cool and interesting interview although, as a french native, I’m gonna have to disagree about a few things of course :) 

    The difference of attitude between France and Quebec for exemple. It sounds more like you guys are talking about the differences between Quebec (the province), and the city of Paris. Paris is not France, and is actually reaaaaaally different from the rest of France! I’m sure you had quite a different feeling when you went to the other cities in France.

    About the fact that everything is translated in Quebec, it’s true, and it’s something I actually found quite funny when I went to Montreal and saw for exemple, that the fast food chain “KFC” becomes “PFK” (“Poulets frits du Kentucky”) in Quebec. Changing the name of the brand! We do use shopping, stop and A LOT of english words in france (usually we just keep the word and put a terrible french accent on it), but it’s also true in a way in Quebec.
    I saw quite a few Quebecois saying stuff like “waou c’est sick ca!” or “creepy”,etc  in a french sentence. So we do the same in France, but not with the same words. Although I would say in Quebec they tend to stick more to the original pronouciation of the word.

    Speaking about the difference of pronunciation, I do think this is the biggest difference between France and Quebec. She takes the exemple of butter and it is true that I probably wouldnt understand it the ways she says it. Not that I m not trying to, but it just sounds like a completly different word to me. Exactly the same as a lot of english natives speakers dont understand french when they speak english, cuz a lot of french do have a terrible accent, wich makes it very hard to understand. We’re just not used to hear it said this way. 

    And it seems like her accent is also giving you a hard time Benny, since you made a totally understandable translating mistake around 1:16. It sounds like she s saying pas autant (not so much) but she s actually saying pas hautain.(not haughty,snobbish)

    Cheers from France and we love you Quebec! :)

    Damn, I want a poutine now…

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Great comment Julien!

      Yes, I can confirm (as mentioned in the post) that our frustration is directed at Parisians. I didn’t explicitly say other French are huge improvements in the video (I always talk very highly of my time in Toulouse for example), but I did refer to my own frustration as being towards Parisians, and not the French. I think Geneviève has only visited Paris in France, so unfortunately she has got this more restricted view of the entire country.

      I also agree that there are quite a lot of English words in Quebecois; party, chum, cheap, more willingness to say “yeah/yes” in some contexts, fun and several others come to mind. As you say, they stay more true to the English pronunciation. When I hear anglicisms in French from France for the first time, unless I see them written down I usually don’t have a clue what they are talking about! When they crop up in Quebec French, then I’ll recognise them instantly.

      It seems to me that the distinction is more formal, this law 101 would mean that products and information would have very French terms, so in principle it seems like there are no English borrowings, but in practice, the actual spoken language has lots of words like those I gave above.

      Thanks for pointing out the translation mistake! I knew I’d make at least one! :) Although I don’t think it’s problems understanding her accent in particular; I likely would have made that mistake if I was interviewing a Parisian!

      Even though it’s not Quebec, I’ll be in Vancouver in a few weeks and the group I’ll be with assure me that we’ll be going to a Quebec restaurant and getting some poutine. I can’t wait! :D

      • jemblue

        The issue comes down to when the words became adopted into French. Prior to the 1960s there was no language legislation, and English was clearly the language of prestige in Montreal. so English words were constantly borrowed and expressions translated. Whereas since the 60s there has been more of a push to come up with French equivalents. The borrowings from before then are still around, but there aren’t as many new ones. In France it’s the opposite – there are a ton of new terms that are used, but not many from before 40-50 years ago, and a lot fewer translated expressions.

  • chocolademelkkk

    Je ne veux pas que les québecois se moquent de moi si je parle avec un accent français ! J’ai entendu qu’ils n’aiment pas les accents français… C’est vrai ? J’ai appris le français de la France mais j’adore le Québec et j’aimerais y retourner un jour (je suis américaine et c’est plus proche que la France…).

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Personne va se moquer de toi. Quand je suis arrivé j’avais un accent plus ou moins parisien mais il me traitaient très bien. Il ne s’agit pas de ne pas aimer l’accent français, c’est l’attitude parisien qu’ils n’aiment pas.

      Vas au Quebec, on va t’accueillir ;)

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    No electronic things allowed? Do I want to even know what this camp is…? No iPods packed with gigabytes of podcasts? No Kindle with dozens of PDFs of vocabulary and grammar to review? No wifi to Skype people all over the world or Facebook to chat with them?

    If not, then I guess you’ll have to kill a bunch of trees and bring some books with you! Perhaps other readers have suggestions, but I rely quite a lot on technology :) If you told me I had to survive without gadgets for any kind of period of time, I’d presume I was being incarcerated for some crime :P

  • http://www.uneasyrhetoric.net/ uneasy rhetoric

     J’adore Montréal; in fact, I was there for the fête de Saint Jean in 2004. But something I thought odd was that, even if I started a conversation in French, they pegged me as American right away and switched to English.  I always tried to assess whether the person was primarily Francophone or Anglophone, but I’m sure I got it wrong sometimes.  Maybe that was my problem.

    One of the more humorous (language-related) moments came when my wife and I went to an English-themed pub and the waitress apologized for having run out of English menus! 

    I also found it odd that apparently the word for Parking Lot in Québec is “Le Stationnement,” but the symbol is a big “P”.

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Good catch! It’s an “E” in some of South America, like Brazil :)

      The switch may have been due to your accent? It’s something similar here in Amsterdam. People who generally speak good English (the Dutch or the Quebecers) will switch to English if your accent is strong enough. They never do it with me because I’ve worked hard on my Rs. No Quebecer *ever* switched to English with me, only “les anglais”.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RQFC4FFKWBG36JHKUJMJQMWHUA TylerH

     Thank you for this!  Would it be possible for you to interview a French person on this topic because this is biased, and I would love to hear their side?

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      This is indeed biased, but I don’t think I’ll be diving deeper into the controversy! I do plan on doing another interview in French in a few weeks (with a Belgian most likely), but it will be about something completely different.

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Keep in mind that the population of Quebec vs the population of French speaking Europe is quite different, so there will be more of a preference for European French all over the Internet.

    There are also simply way more Brazilians than Portuguese, so it makes sense they dominate the material available. It isn’t quite as simple as Europe vs the Americas ;) In some cases one dominates.

    You actually can find resources and books available specifically about Quebec French, but the language hasn’t quite been standardised, so it is still formally represented as somewhat European. I believe this is intentional, to keep as much consistency as possible across the French speaking world, even though there are many differences. A standard French phrase book would indeed have you totally understood in Montreal!

    But if you search for news stations based in Quebec you’ll find a lot of videos and podcasts online which have the distinct Quebec accent as they speak!

  • Chris

    Très intéressant. I listen to French podcasts from Québec regularly and I like the Québec accent, better than the European accent. I just find it more interesting – the Parisien accent is just a bit too “perfect” if thar makes any sense.

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      After a negative experience in Paris I simply have negative associations with that accent, and prefer the Quebec one because of this.

  • Paul

    Great video. Many thanks for that!

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Wow really?? That’s so cool :D Thanks for sharing :D

  • http://howlearnspanish.com/ Andrew

    Very cool! I love learning all the little tidbits about a culture like that, fascinating.  French and Japanese are next on my hit list, for sure, I can’t wait to visit France.

    Cheers,
    Andrew

  • Max Hydrogen

    Ok. Certaines différences  entre le Français standard et le Français Québécois. Premièrement, j’écris en Français standard car en ce moment il n’existe pas de standard orthographique québécois. Je ne sais pas si je devrais utiliser le IPA car pas il n’est pas connu par plusieurs “laymen”. Aussi, juste pour dire, le Québécois utilisé par Geneviève était plutôt acrolectique, c’est-à-dire soigné pour sonner plus Français.

    Le Québécois a des voyelles Portugaises et des consonnes Russes.  par exemple, le fameux “â”. Cette voyelle se retrouve toujours à la fin d’un mot ou au milieu quand écrit avec un accent circonflexe. Par exemple, “ça va” est écrit en deux mot, mais à l’oral, il compte pour un mot alors le premier “a” se prononce comme un “a” non-terminal. Le “ô” dans la dernière syllabe, et ceci inclus les monosyllabes, se prononce en diphtongue (je ne sais pas comment l’écrire ici…) Certains “a” médiales deviennent des diphtongues, par exemple, “Sable” devient “Saobe”, Miracle” devient “Miraoque”. T et D devant I et U deviennent TS et DZ. Et ces voyelles sont supprimées dans certains cas et créent des articulations qui ressemblent au щ Russe, par exemple: “Suis-je” devient “Ch’tsû” “Ostie” devient “s’sti” et ainsi.

    Le Français a à peu près 13 voyelles. Le Québécois en a 25. Ceci est du a une relation binaire entres les voyelles serrées et laxes. Dans une syllabe ouvert, c’est a dire qui termine par un voyelle, ladite voyelle est serré, comme les voyelles en Français standard. Mais dans une syllabe fermée, c’est-à-dire qui se termine par une consonne, la voyelle est laxe qui veut dire qu’elle se prononce avec certains muscles de la gorge relaxés (avec certaines exceptions). Par exemple, “Jus” est une syllabe ouverte (le S ne compte pas car il est muet) et se prononce comme en France. Mais “Jupe” est une syllabe fermée et se prononce différemment quand France. Aussi, en France il y a deux voyelle nasales, mais au Québec il y en a 4 ou 5. En France “Brin” et “Brun” se prononce de la même façon mais pas au Québec. En France, les voyelles nasales de “dansant” se prononce de la même façon, mais au Québec elle peuvent se prononcer différemment dépendent de la personne (moi je les prononce différemment.)

    Les articles sont un peu comme le portugais. Au lieu de “la” on dit “a”: “La roue”, “A roue”. Dans certains cas “le” devient “l apostrophe” devant une consonne: “Où est le câble?” “Yé où l’câobe?” “Les” perd également sont L. “Donne-moi les pommes” “Dònne-moué és pòmmes”. Comme en Italien, les prépositions se fusionnent, “en la” devient “nella”, “en il” devient “nello”, en Québécois “de la” devient “ddla/ddlâ” le double “d” sgnifie la plosion latérale. “Sur le” et ” sur la” deviennent “su” et “sa” comme “sullo” et “sulla” en Italien.

    Le phénomène phonétique du “schwa deletion” cause plusieurs des particularités du Québécois. C’est-à-dire, le son de la lettre “e”, dans certains car est supprimé causant les consonnes adjacentes a venir en contact. Par exmeple: “Je suis” devient “Chu” “Je saute” devient “ch’saute” et “Je vois” devient “j’vois”. Alors, quand la première lettre du verbe est sans voix, le “j” de “je” perd sa voix et devient “ch”. Quand qu’elle a de la voix, le “j’ est conservé. Le “schwa deletion” cause aussi la plosion nasale. Dans le mot “tenir”, on supprime le “e”. “T” et “n” s’assimile ensemble et forme la plosion nasale. Geneviève a essayé de se corriger quand qu’elle a dit “Tenir” mais elle a bien articulé la plosion nasale. Il a plusieurs autre exemples.

    Le “r” final devient un sorte de diphtongue  “off-glide, on-glide”. Par exemple “rire”, “riy”. “Char”, “chã” “Beurre”, “baey/beuy”. “pour”, Põ”.

    Comme on utilise pas le “vosotros” en Espagnol Américain, on utilise pas “nous” en Québécois. “nous” est remplacé par “on”. “Il/ils” devient “y”. “Elle/” devient “a”. “Elles” devient “y”. “Elle est” devient “è” et “elles sont” devient “y sont”. “vous” reste pareil.  Plusieurs verbe au subjonctif sont différent en Québécois, par exemple en Français “il faut que je voie”, en Québécois: “y faut qu’j’voille”. Il n’y a pas de Passé simple et Subjonctif de l’imparfait et ainsi. Le Québécois emploie la troisième personne à l’impératif qui est en fait le subjonctif présent “qu’y vienne!”

    Les structure de phrase sont différentes aussi mais trop complexe pour expliquer ici. Et il y en a encore à décrire ha ha!

    • jemblue

      Je suis d’accord avec la plupart, mais en France il y a au moins de 3 voyelles nasales: les sons dans “an,” “on,” et “in,” et dans certains régions il y a encore la distinction entre “un” et “in”.

  • Sandy Allain

    I am ashame but you are so right about the french attitude when you do not speak perfect french in Paris. I am from Paris myself. I live abroad so maybe that’s why I have a different mentality but it was funny to hear that from you…

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Luckily Parisians I’ve met who are well travelled tend to be much more open minded ;) But to be honest, I’ve met all of these *outside* of Paris!!! :-P

  • Maria Brown

    Very interesting and informative.  Thanks for sharing, Benny.  I suppose I should not be surprised that there are so many differences, just as American English (what I speak) has many differnces from British and Australian English. 

  • http://LifeByExperimentation.com Zane the Experimenter

    Very useful interview!  It was a great learning experience for me, both for practicing comprehension and learning about the differences.  I definitely had a bit of a hard time with the Quebec accent!

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Takes some getting used to if you are mainly familiar with European French, but it’s definitely worth it :)

  • http://www.soaringtosochi.com Jonathan Vellner

    J’adore “la belle province” de Québec, j’y passe tous mes étés.  Je viens originalement de l’Ouest du Canada, mais je suis souvent au Québec à cause de mon sport – notre centre d’entraînement national est à Lac-Beauport, QC.  Benny, si jamais tu te trouve à Québec l’été, tu devrais passer voir les rampes d’eau à Lac-Beauport.  Tu peux même les essayer!  Je ne sais pas si tu sais skier, mais je sais que t’es toujours ouvert à de nouvelles expériences :)
    Ça me ferait plaisir de te coacher!

    Pour ce qui est du bilinguisme au Canada, c’est dommage qu’on ne retrouve pas plus de français hors du Québec.  Jusqu’à date j’e n’ai eu que des bonnes expériences avec les québecois (au Québec ou ailleurs), et mes amis de Québec disent la même chose de leurs aventures dans l’ouest.  Si seulement tous les canadiens anglais pourraient voyager et mieux connaître le Québec, comme moi j’ai fait, et tous les québecois pourraient voir et connaître un peu le reste du Canada.  Je crois que si on encouragait plus d’échanges entre nos deux bords, ça ne ferait qu’enrichir le pays et nous rapprocher tous.

    De nos jours il est essentiel de s’ouvrir au reste du monde – ce n’est plus assez de rester chacun dans notre petit coin.  Je suis 100% d’accord avec Geneviève là-dessus.

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Bravo Jonathan! Je suis 100% d’accord avec vous deux ;)

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Thanks for the positive words.

    However, you can expect many videos like this. Unlike formal interviews, these are chats about topics that I feel are worth sharing on the blog. Geneviève was polite and shared her opinion, disagree with it as you may. Many things she shared, true or not, are sentiments felt by a lot of Quebecers, and a point of view I wanted to share with my readers.

    You can see other commenters say that they are actually eager to go to Quebec now after watching this video, and that was the kind of result I was hoping for. Yes, there are negative feelings promoted in the video, and that’s unfortunate, but after living in Montreal for 3 months I feel like this video shares a general feeling many Quebecers have based on my experiences.

    More videos with bold statements are coming. They do not represent my opinion, but I am not going to edit them out or tell the interviewee to tip toe over egg shells. If people are offended by this they may have to stop watching these videos. I do not think this video sullies anything I do; it contributes to the website and shares a unique cultural perspective.

  • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

    Many do. I continue to highly recommend Paris for a weekend visit, but then to get out as soon as possible :-P

  • http://leakygrammar.com Gavin

    Salut Benny.  C’est vraiment genial cette idée d’interviewer les gens pour savoir un peu plus sur les différences culturelles et de connaître un peu plus les endroits où tu es.  J’ai trop envie d’aller à Montréal un jour! Ça fait déjà pas mal de temps depuis que j’habite à Hawaii, et j’imagine que ça caille au Quebec, je me suis habitué aux tropiques un peu trop je crois, mais tous les gens que j’ai encontré qui viennent de là sont vachement accueillants et sympas, alors j’éspère qu’un jour j’peux y aller!  

    I grew up in Oregon by the way so enjoy Portland, an awesome town to say the least: we have more micro-breweries per capita than Germany! 

    Aloha,

    Gavin

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny the Irish polyglot

      Merci Gavin! I’m in Portland now and looking forward to checking it out!
      More interviews on the way soon!

  • Marjorie / Histoire à Vivre

    Bravo Benny, j’adore cette vidéo !! Je suis Française et Suisse, et j’ai remarqué aussi des différences entre le vocabulaire suisse et le français, notamment avec les repas : les Suisses disent pareil que les Québécois : Déjeuner, Dinner et Souper.
    J’admire le fait que tu comprennes si bien l’accent québécois, tu as une oreille bien formée, félicitations ! 
    Je pars demain en avion pour le week-end (lol, comment disent les Québécois ? Fin de semaine ?) voir un ami à Delft, Pays-Bas. Je ne connais pas ce pays et je penserai à toi. A bientôt cher Benny et merci d’être ce que tu es. Merci aussi à Geneviève.
    (Congratulations Benny, I love this video ! I am French and Swiss, and I have noticed as well many differences between French and Swiss vocabulary, especially with meals words : Swiss people say the same words than Quebec people in this case !
    I admire the fact you understand that well the quebec accent, you have a very good earing, great !
    I leave tomorrow by plane for weekend (lol, how say Quebec people ? End of week ?) to see a friend in Delft, Netherlands. I do not know that land and I will think about you. See you dear Benny and thank you beeing who you are. Thanks to Geneviève as well.)

  • Marjorie / Histoire à Vivre

    Bravo Benny, j’adore cette vidéo !! Je suis Française et Suisse, et j’ai remarqué aussi des différences entre le vocabulaire suisse et le français, notamment avec les repas : les Suisses disent pareil que les Québécois : Déjeuner, Dinner et Souper.
    J’admire le fait que tu comprennes si bien l’accent québécois, tu as une oreille bien formée, félicitations ! 
    Je pars demain en avion pour le week-end (lol, comment disent les Québécois ? Fin de semaine ?) voir un ami à Delft, Pays-Bas. Je ne connais pas ce pays et je penserai à toi. A bientôt cher Benny et merci d’être ce que tu es. Merci aussi à Geneviève.
    (Congratulations Benny, I love this video ! I am French and Swiss, and I have noticed as well many differences between French and Swiss vocabulary, especially with meals words : Swiss people say the same words than Quebec people in this case !
    I admire the fact you understand that well the quebec accent, you have a very good earing, great !
    I leave tomorrow by plane for weekend (lol, how say Quebec people ? End of week ?) to see a friend in Delft, Netherlands. I do not know that land and I will think about you. See you dear Benny and thank you beeing who you are. Thanks to Geneviève as well.)

  • Marjorie / Histoire à Vivre

    Bravo Benny, j’adore cette vidéo !! Je suis Française et Suisse, et j’ai remarqué aussi des différences entre le vocabulaire suisse et le français, notamment avec les repas : les Suisses disent pareil que les Québécois : Déjeuner, Dinner et Souper.
    J’admire le fait que tu comprennes si bien l’accent québécois, tu as une oreille bien formée, félicitations ! 
    Je pars demain en avion pour le week-end (lol, comment disent les Québécois ? Fin de semaine ?) voir un ami à Delft, Pays-Bas. Je ne connais pas ce pays et je penserai à toi. A bientôt cher Benny et merci d’être ce que tu es. Merci aussi à Geneviève.
    (Congratulations Benny, I love this video ! I am French and Swiss, and I have noticed as well many differences between French and Swiss vocabulary, especially with meals words : Swiss people say the same words than Quebec people in this case !
    I admire the fact you understand that well the quebec accent, you have a very good earing, great !
    I leave tomorrow by plane for weekend (lol, how say Quebec people ? End of week ?) to see a friend in Delft, Netherlands. I do not know that land and I will think about you. See you dear Benny and thank you beeing who you are. Thanks to Geneviève as well.)

  • Marjorie / Histoire à Vivre

    Bravo Benny, j’adore cette vidéo !! Je suis Française et Suisse, et j’ai remarqué aussi des différences entre le vocabulaire suisse et le français, notamment avec les repas : les Suisses disent pareil que les Québécois : Déjeuner, Dinner et Souper.
    J’admire le fait que tu comprennes si bien l’accent québécois, tu as une oreille bien formée, félicitations ! 
    Je pars demain en avion pour le week-end (lol, comment disent les Québécois ? Fin de semaine ?) voir un ami à Delft, Pays-Bas. Je ne connais pas ce pays et je penserai à toi. A bientôt cher Benny et merci d’être ce que tu es. Merci aussi à Geneviève.
    (Congratulations Benny, I love this video ! I am French and Swiss, and I have noticed as well many differences between French and Swiss vocabulary, especially with meals words : Swiss people say the same words than Quebec people in this case !
    I admire the fact you understand that well the quebec accent, you have a very good earing, great !
    I leave tomorrow by plane for weekend (lol, how say Quebec people ? End of week ?) to see a friend in Delft, Netherlands. I do not know that land and I will think about you. See you dear Benny and thank you beeing who you are. Thanks to Geneviève as well.)

  • http://pistolette.net Pistolette

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    Thanks for this perspective. I’m struggling with the dialect
    issue myself. I’m ethnically Cajun French and live in Louisiana, but I don’t
    speak the language (the public schools deliberately killed it off for
    “Americanization” decades ago). Much like the Quebecers, we’re now
    trying to keep the native language alive, and cultural pride has really grown
    since the 2005 hurricanes nearly wiped us out. I’m currently learning French,
    and my two young children start French immersion school next month, alas, our
    teachers come directly from France so we’re learning European, not Acadian
    style French.

    I like European French well enough, however, it just doesn’t
    feel like “our” French. Most locals here agree we can preserve but not *favor*
    the Cajun dialect because it’s too different and other Francophones wouldn’t
    easily understand us (like when I hear Glaswegian!). Since Cajuns migrated from
    Canada, and Louisiana was part of “New France” (Acadia) before America bought
    it, I feel this is closer to what we should be speaking. Plus, I prefer the
    sound of Geneviève’s Quebec dialect
    because it sounds more comfortable to my ear, like the casualness an American
    southerner would naturally talk with. Louisiana
    also has a strong Catholic history and would be quite comfortable cursing that way ;-)

    So Geneviève, send some
    teachers down here, chère!

  • http://pistolette.net Pistolette

    @font-face {
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    Thanks for this perspective. I’m struggling with the dialect
    issue myself. I’m ethnically Cajun French and live in Louisiana, but I don’t
    speak the language (the public schools deliberately killed it off for
    “Americanization” decades ago). Much like the Quebecers, we’re now
    trying to keep the native language alive, and cultural pride has really grown
    since the 2005 hurricanes nearly wiped us out. I’m currently learning French,
    and my two young children start French immersion school next month, alas, our
    teachers come directly from France so we’re learning European, not Acadian
    style French.

    I like European French well enough, however, it just doesn’t
    feel like “our” French. Most locals here agree we can preserve but not *favor*
    the Cajun dialect because it’s too different and other Francophones wouldn’t
    easily understand us (like when I hear Glaswegian!). Since Cajuns migrated from
    Canada, and Louisiana was part of “New France” (Acadia) before America bought
    it, I feel this is closer to what we should be speaking. Plus, I prefer the
    sound of Geneviève’s Quebec dialect
    because it sounds more comfortable to my ear, like the casualness an American
    southerner would naturally talk with. Louisiana
    also has a strong Catholic history and would be quite comfortable cursing that way ;-)

    So Geneviève, send some
    teachers down here, chère!

  • http://twitter.com/patrice_clement Patrice Clement

    I stumbled across this video while surfing YouTube (it comes up if you look up for Quebec French vs Metropolo

  • http://twitter.com/patrice_clement Patrice Clement

    I stumbled across this video while surfing on YouTube, it actually comes up if you look up for Quebec French vs Metropolitan French.

    One thing recurrent about us and that makes me cringe: the French attitude towards non-native speakers. Why does the World perceive us like that? It is somewhat true most of us French are proud of speaking le Français. But please, falling into generalizations is fairly easy. As Julien said a few comments below, Paris is not France: if you ever come to our country for a trip, go down to the South and/or South-East: people out there are way more open-minded than Parisians. As a southerner, I do agree Parisians are uptight, rude and talk to you as if they have a sweep stuck up their arse. Paris is nice for 2/3 days but escape out of it to the countryside of France. Worth it big time!

    As a French native speaker, I see Quebec French as a mish-mash made of French and American English: Québécois have been living alonside America for some time now and as a result, English has greatly influenced the way they speak and the French language spoken in QC. The comparison between Metropolitan French/QC French as being the exact same as British English/American English is spot on. However, for those of you who are learning French, even though I respect QC French, you are better off going with Metropolitan French: France doesn’t get as much exposure with QC French as the world with American English does. They use a wad of expressions/sayings utterly unknown to French (ostie, calice, tabarnak, that kind of stuff) and people will puzzingly look at you thinking “what sort of word did he come out with?” if you speak like that in France. I had to look up some of them cause I was bewildered when I read them first time (prendre une marche for instance, litteral translation from take a walk).

    Anyway, nice video Benny. Keep up! Tu parles bien Français. :)

    Patrice

    • http://www.fluentin3months.com/ Benny Lewis

      As I’ve said before, I only ever refer to Parisians when complaining about attitudes and not the French in general, and I did so in this video and in the description. I lived in Toulouse for 3 months and in Brittany for one month and really enjoyed myself.

      But you would do well to appreciate Quebec French much more. From their perspective, European French is a mish-mash of French and British English. I find both of you use an almost equal amount of English words, but in different ways, so one always whines about the other using more than them. In France you have stop, parking, weekend and in Quebec they have party, fun, chum. No matter who I listen to complain about other country’s French, I find it hypocritical!

      But yes, this is the charm of les francophones I guess :P

  • Lorelei Pepi

    That was so cool! I’ve been looking online for help in listening to native Quebecois speakers, and your conversation was really easy to listen to, especially because you took the time to give us subtitle translations.

  • Jenn

    I’m a canadian from Vancouver, and growing up, it was mandatory for me to learn french from grade 4 to grade 8. After that it was optional. It has given me a good feel for the language, and i have always felt like i have an affinity towards french more then other languages. Even though i’m from vancouver, which is probably the most far removed from any francophone culture (i’ve never met anyone from quebec before :O), the fact that everything is written in both english and french means that my vocabulary is pretty expansive for someone just starting out, although it definitely mostly relates to food :) For example i know the word for wheat (le ble), cinammon (la canelle), oil (l’huile) etc, even though it was never brought up in school, it is simply from reading, say, the cereal box when i’m bored. 
    I wish Canada had a better system for teaching french to anglophones, After grade 8 i stopped learning french, because the past 4 years had made me hate it! Now i’m kicking myself, because i have actually discovered that i love the french language. 
    I do have some advantages over a completely new learner of french. Such as the fact that I have pretty decent pronunciation, i can usually just look at a word and pronounce it properly. I can read french rather well (about 50-75%), where i at least get the gist, and i already have a good base for vocabulary. 
    Anyways, great post, and i have one quick question
    After knowing all these languages, and refusing to speak english when you learn a new one, do you find that your level of english has gone down? I’m personally worried that if learn a language to fluency, and speak no english, that my english will degrade a bit. I have a friend from germany who refused to speak german, only english, and even thought in english, and he told me that when he goes back home, his german isn’t at the high level it was before…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13601010 Lucie Dilek Seyhun

    I disagree with her comment that the Quebecois will answer a foreigner in French if he/she is trying to speak French.  I have witnessed people switching to English when they hear someone’s accent (even if it is a French from France accent!), so it is possible to see that in Quebec, too, maybe just in fewer cases.  Also, I would consider all of Canada to be bilingual because it, as a whole, does have 2 official languages, and Canadian students, if I am not mistaken, need to learn French at school.  Many also attend French immersion school.  

    • jemblue

      In theory, Canada is a bilingual country, but in reality, only around 17% of the population reported fluency in both languages in the last census – and a disproportionate number of them were francophones.

  • Leslie

    Spent a summer in an immersion (French) program in Chicoutimi, northern Quebec (UQaC).  C’etait formidable!  People program etc.  can’t be beat!  Je m’ennuie du Quebec moi aussi!

  • Shri2966

    Je n’ai jamais rencontre l’attitude parisienne telle que vous avez decrite.  Dans mes experiences la-bas, les Francais etaient/sont toujours contents quand on essaie de parler leur langue.  Il est vrai, cependant, qu’ils semblent tous avoir  le devoir d’aider les etrangers a mieux parler.

    Quant au Quebec, aucun probleme la-bas non plus.  Tout simplement, il faut s’accoutumer a l’accent, qui differe meme d’ou on se trouve au Quebec.  Et oui!  Quelle belle province!

    En comparant les differences, rappelez-vous des differences de vocabulaire et de prononciation chez les anglophones, soit aux E-U, soit en Angleterre, soit en Ecosse

  • John

    C’était choquant la différence entre les québécois et les français. En particulière la prononciation j’apprends la langue qui vient de France, et l’accent québécois et presque trop différent comprendre de temps en temps mais j’adore Québec et je veux y aller au futur. Merci beaucoup pour ce vidéo!! Je voulais apprendre ce que vous avez inclue.

  • http://www.facebook.com/anne.snyder.984 Anne Snyder

    My friends from Normandy are visiting and my French Canadian friend is acting as interpreter without any problems at all. Apparently, not all FCs have an accent that can cause problems.

    • Jashn

      Actually, many French-Canadians can trace their roots to the region of Normandy, so it’s not a surprise that a Quebecois/French-Canadian can easily communicate with people from that region. Their dialects would be more similar than a Quebecois and a Parisian, for example.

      • jemblue

        That would have been more true 100-150 years ago, when most people in Normandy spoke Norman and only knew Standard French as a second language. Today they pretty much speak Standard French, with just the occasional Normanism thrown in.

    • La pieuvre

      My ancestors came from Rouen and arrived in 1634, in the first large wave of french peasant immigration. Many Québécois have their roots in Normandy, but also various other regions which at the time spoke different dialects. Les habitants, as they called themselves at the time, converged over royal french to be mutually intelligible. Each adding variations from their respective regional dialects. This is how Québécois french was born. From a purely linguistic-historical point of view, asides from borrowed english words, phonetically Québécois french is “pure” french. Actually, France was linguistically united towards the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century, making Québec the country speaking french as a national language for the longest on earth.

  • Neyane

    That’s really odd to ear canadian speak about french like this, I don’t feel like the french that she’s talking about, me too I want the other peoples to speak my language, anyway if they’re doing mistakes at the beginning! I had a canadian teenager at home (from Alberta, so she speak english), and it was fun to see her progress in French! But I know some people in Paris have the reputation to have a bad behavior.

  • http://www.facebook.com/silk.eotd Silk Eotd

    I don’t understand your idea of the Quebec accent being influenced by the U.S.?? I’m also a Canadian, an Anglophone Canadian living near the New York border and I assure you my accent is completely different than the Americans living 30 minutes from me over the border.

  • http://www.facebook.com/silk.eotd Silk Eotd

    I’m Canadian and live near the U.S. border in Ontario but I have been to Quebec twice and loved it. I miss Quebec! :)

  • Jacob De Camillis

    You should do a posting on the sister patois: Acadian and Cajun French! Québec is only part of the picture of French in North America. :)

  • LittleStudent

    Lol, try speaking French in Quebec when you are Acadian, they hate it. You’re no better than an Anglophone. And don’t even bring up France, they get butthurt.

  • Jashn

    Canadian English is not a monolith. ;) Rather than Tennessee English, they might prefer Newfoundland’s English…very Irish, very interesting.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Occupy-Wallstreet/100002999968433 Occupy Wallstreet

    Maybe it would be better if Quebec were a separate country. When Quebec started to separate during the cold war there was a lot of fear about that in the U.S. It might be a better way to keep French going in its pure state. I would like to have a pure francophone culture nearby as I am so sick of the Americans catering to the Spanish. ( However, it might be a bad economic move and I hate fighting.)

  • LPS

    They probably just saw you struggling in French and spoke to you in English as a courtesy.

  • John

    Last week I drove
    past my old university town in southern France and stopped over at a popular
    bakery to pick up baguettes (French crusty bread). However there was none left
    in stock. So I left and told the store keeper I would return in about an hour,
    and asked that she have one in the oven ready for me. By the time I returned those
    were again finished.

    I told the woman that I was happy their
    baguettes were still as good as I remembered them to be, and that people still
    queued up to buy them. I told her I used to come there every day to buy a loaf
    while at school. She gave me a modest look, smiled, put on a wry expression and
    continued to attend to others. I walked away missing France. A friend who was
    just moved to France was with me at the time. He felt offended that the woman
    didn’t seem to welcome my appreciation. Then I told him that her behaviour was
    attribute no. 102 of Frenchship! What my friend didn’t know was that my
    positive comment could very well end up an hour-long discussion at dinner time
    in the lady’s home.

    These attitudes have been summarised in the
    book FRENCH ATTITUDE 101: One hundred and one behavioural attributes of
    Frenchship.

    A book by Brian C. Kelly

  • http://www.facebook.com/Andie.Tinhof Andrea Tinhof

    From a linguistic, cultural, regional and historical standpoint your comment makes no sense at all. Do you REALLY think Celine Dion’s accent, for example, sounds ANYTHING like anglophones from the West Island of Montreal, who have a completely non-regional American english accents?

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniell.lind Daniell Lind

    It’s funny. I’m American. My husband is from northern Ontario, both parents only speak French. I speak none. It’s been quite the burden on our relationship. It’s vary hard to try and learn French when none of the lessons sound like them. Today we argued about that fact that he believes when he says English words with a French accent it because that’s how you say it in French. I don’t believe that. Like for instance Las Angeles, this is Spanish, while English speakers may not pronounce it correctly, we don’t say it in English. The angles. If there is no French word or the name of something, say it the proper way. If I say words wrong in French it probably because I don’t feel comfortable saying it properly. Not because that’s how you say it in English. It’s not English!!! I was trying to tell him not to put a French accent on English words when speaking to his mother so she could learn. He just doesn’t get it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniell.lind Daniell Lind

    It’s funny. I’m American. My husband is from northern Ontario, both parents only speak French. I speak none. It’s been quite the burden on our relationship. It’s vary hard to try and learn French when none of the lessons sound like them. Today we argued about that fact that he believes when he says English words with a French accent it because that’s how you say it in French. I don’t believe that. Like for instance Las Angeles, this is Spanish, while English speakers may not pronounce it correctly, we don’t say it in English. The angles. If there is no French word or the name of something, say it the proper way. If I say words wrong in French it probably because I don’t feel comfortable saying it properly. Not because that’s how you say it in English. It’s not English!!! I was trying to tell him not to put a French accent on English words when speaking to his mother so she could learn. He just doesn’t get it.

  • jemblue

    You talk about “French being shoved down people’s throats,” but the reality is that French Canadians are FAR more likely to speak English fluently than English Canadians are to speak French. In Quebec, 40% of the population is bilingual; in the rest of Canada, it’s only 10%.

    Canada is supposed to be a bilingual country, but it’s mostly only the francophones who actually follow that dictum. The anglophones mostly remain monolingual and whine that everyone isn’t like them. How good is your French, Phil?

  • Serge L.

    IKE: You posted: ” it is almost impossible to distinguish between a quebecois speaking English and an American/Canadian speaking English…As for the quebecois speaking French, this accent seems to me also strongly influenced by US” My parents have been in the US for many years. There accents is still thick today as the day they left. In fact they could not speak english when they moved to the US. Also I have a huge family in Quebec and very few of them can speak english. Your other statement that the Quebec accent is influenced by the english is completely wrong. Don’t know where that came from.

  • Serge L.

    Quebec is not Canada. We are separate and yes we are different. Please do not forget the only reason Quebec is part of Canada is due to a military invasion and conquering of a people. I assure you the people of Quebec have not forgotten this and will never forget it. It is a dream and someday it will be a reality to decide our own destiny and future by becoming an independent nation. This is our right. It is necessary for the survival of Quebec and Quebecois.

  • Serge L.

    There is no attitude coming from the french. It is from you and anglos like you…but you refuse to see it. Quebec is french not english. Please show some respect for the language and culture and you will be shown respect. Of course you have to learn french in school….Quebec is french not english. Do not forget the only reason Quebec is in Canada is due to an illegal military invasion and conquering of a people. Anglos like you refuse to understand this and look in the mirror because the only ” stinking attitude ” is coming from you. The discrimination against the french must stop.

  • Mytch

    J’aime ça beaucoup parce que je ne savais rien de la culture québécoise avant avoir vu cette vidéo. Merci!

  • Vincent

    I plan to move to Quebec by next January. I will DEFINITELY immerse myself in Quebec French and Quebec culture and live in Montreal too. I want to move there. But I also want to reach out to all my Francophone brothers and sisters throughout the Toronto area. Bon Chance!

  • KY123

    Thanks so much for this post. I learned so much!! The video was excellent!

  • Hortensia

    J’ai beaucoup aimé ton video! Moi, je suis à Québec pour étudier depuis un an, et je trouve que les québecois sont super ouverts; et elle a raison, ils sont contents de voir que quelqu’un fait des efforts pour apprendre le français, qui est assez difficile! Visitez le Québec, c’est super beau!
    Je trouve qu’ici les voyelles sont plus ouverts, plus allongés…mais j’ai jamais visité la France.
    Très bon video!
    Salut

  • Ronald Draper

    Little late to the party here, but loved this video….my wife is French (we live in Chicago) and we visited Montreal for the first time last year and it was almost more French than France the way they guard the language. Really enjoyed this couch surfing session, thank you!

  • Anca De Cercel

    Tout a Fait D’accord seulement que après 25 ans au Quebec , je n’arrive pas a comprendre pour quoi les Québécois ont Peur de Perdre l’usage du Francais ! En ce qui nous concerne Tous nous autres , les immigrants des autres pays et d’autres cultures ont n’as jamais Perdue Nos langues matternelles , meme que nos langues ne sont pas d’usage au Québec !!! À part de ça il y as une Autre Questionement que personne ne soulèvent !!! Pourquoi pas que les deux peuples fondateurs du Canada , ne serais pas capable d’apprendre et parler couramment les deux langues officielles du Canada ?!?! Pourquoi pas que ni les québécois , ni les anglais ne se donnent pas les peine d’apprendre au moins les deux langues !?! Ça seras la moindre des choses car dans les pays du monde entier , on se fait une fierté de parler plusieurs langues et non pas seulement la langue maternelle !!! Je pense que le Système d’enseignement et de l’Education fait grande défaut par l’existence des 2 Commissions Scolaires – Secteur Anglophone et Secteur Franophone – !! C’est incroyable pour moi car je ne vois aucune nécessité logique , qui apporte que la séparation et la frustration autant des anglais que du côté français !!! Aucune de deux n’arrivent pas à maîtriser la langue de l’autre et chaqu’un pense seulement de son côté en amplifiant les réactions de rejets autant du côté des francophone que du côté des anglophones !!! Honnêtement je ne omprends pas le système quand il seras tellement facile d’intégrer les deux langues officielles dans l’éducation à partir de la petite enfance !!!! Voilà … Tout les

    autres problèmes seront régler et en plus tout la population du Québec bénéficieront d’une éducation plus vaste et des bénéfices énormes entant que Bilingues !!! Il faut seoser une question !!!!! Pourquoi que la plupart des immigrants des autres pays , parlent les 2 langues en plus de leurs langue maternelle sans perdre l’usage d’aucune !?!? Pourquoi que cette questionne et Constament soulever parmies les Francophones et les Anglophone et que les deux se plaind Constament de ne pas être traiter équitablement !?!??? Vraiment la … Ils faut réfléchir plus et prendre un peu l’examen.e des autres pays ou toutes les langues font partie d’un enseignement général et au Moins deux langues font souvent partie de notre bagage linguistique et culturel , peu importe notre langue maternelle !!!!!!!

    • Marjorie Loup

      Bonjour Anca,
      Je trouve que c’est tout à fait logique, tu as raison : il serait tellement plus simple d’instaurer obligatoirement les deux langues du pays tant du côté anglophone que francophone ! L’être humain aime bien compliquer les choses….
      Marjorie

      • Anca De Cercel

        Merci pour ton commentaire Marjorie !! Oui , tres simple et sans discrimination !! Le peuple n’est pas en cause et non plus la cause !! Toujours Une question de politique ! Tant que ça ne change pas et on continue de se concentrer sur la priorité ou non priorité des langues , et au lieu de actionner dans l’amour et non pas la peur , toujours on auras la séparation et la dispute !!! Vraiment je ne comprends pas comment on ne peut pas voir la chance qu’on as d’être dans une pays tellement riche en différent cultures et la chance de pouvoir parler 2 langues et même plus si on va laisser du côté tout les préjuger et anciennes remords concernant religion !! Oublions le passé et dire un Grande Merci pour le Beau Présent et vivre en paix et Amour dans une Pays tellement merveilleuse , concentrons nous sur l’éducation dans tout les sensés et donner la chance à notre peuple d’apprendre les deux langues , chance égale pour tous car on ne vit pas dans l’isolement et les échanges entrés les pays ne sont font pas par une seule langue !! On se doit ouverte comme une grande nation et alors nos jeunes doivent être de plus en plus instruits pour faire face à la mondialisation !!
        Bonne fin de semaine Marjorie dans la joie et l’amour !!

        • Marjorie Loup

          Merci Anca,
          Je vis en France.
          Parles-tu anglais ? Quelle est ta langue maternelle ?
          Si tu es d’accord, j’aimerais échanger avec toi (dans les 2 langues ?)
          J’apprécie ton coeur et ta chaleur
          Marjorie

          • ANCA deCERCEL

            Hi Marjorie !! 3- rd attempt to leave a reply to you !! A real hassle to write here from IPad and IPhone !! Thank you for your nice words and enjoy the Sunday !!

  • Anca De Cercel

    Hi Marjorie !! Can’t right fom the IPad !!!

  • Anca De Cercel

    I am writing in Blind mode !! Of course I am speaking French , English and not so bad Italian !! My my Ccbirth Country it’s Romania so .. Romanian !! It’s nice to meet you and to exchange with you !! We just come back from France when we still have family !! If you would like .. You can send me a friend request in Fb !! I already liked this Blog so would be easy to find me !!! Have a great Evening .. Sorry God Night already !! I can’t see it what I wrote !!! Hahaha .. Hope come out properly !!!

    • Marjorie Loup

      Hi Anca,
      I cannot find you on FB :(
      Nobody in Canada with your name…
      My pseudo is : Histoire à Vivre Jeunesse
      See you :)
      Marjorie

      • Anca De Cercel

        Hi Marjorie !! I suposs you must be busy and you didn’t see it my friend request and message in FB !? I also sent to you here all my info !! Same name and same personne , only difference it’s for FB when added Ariel ( my Spiritual name ) !!! As see it your FB Profile .. I was so pleasant surprised to see so many similarity in interests !!! Au Plaisir des exchanges future !!! Amicalment Anca !!!

  • Andi

    This is rather on the late side, but I just read this article and as an Anglophone Montrealer, I felt I had to respond.
    Firstly, your accent is very genteel:)
    Secondly, Quebec really is a lovely place. All feel free to come visit. Even if you don’t want to learn French and/or don’t speak a word of the language, it’s quite easy to get around.
    Thirdly, I find it very ironic that Genevieve thinks Anglophones have an easier time finding jobs than Francophones. As an Anglophone in an Anglophone community, it seems like you must speak fluent French to get a job, unless it’s within a community business, of course. I gave up looking for a job in my field, because my French is not quite up to par. Instead I do work by correspondence with bosses in the States and Toronto. Grass always seems greener on the other side!
    Lastly, great article, great interview and keep them coming.

  • La pieuvre

    I’d say part courtesy, part opportunity to pratice english themselves. I am Québécois, but my mother is Hungarian and grew up in Toronto. As a result I speak fluently both french and english. I would say that many people here in Québec have a serious inferiority complex towards english speaking north america. For many it is percieved that not learning english is a sentence to failure or stagnation.

    On the flipside, for some it is a manner of showing that we have actually learned our neighbours language with relative ease, whereas they have not. The whole issue is very complex and rooted in a long history of english domination over economic and political affairs.

  • steph dumais

    I’m from Montreal as well and I can see some bias in perceptions from your guest. But I would especially like correct a mistake she made. She claims french is only spoken in Quebec inside Canada. This is not true, there are large french speaking communities in every province of Canada ( notably Ontario ). Also, only one province in Canada is officialy bilingual, and that is New Brunswick. – EDIT: I just finished reading the other comments and someone already pointed this out!

  • mike1888

    Hi Benny,

    this will be the millionth time I’ve watched this video. I was so happy when I first found it. I have just read a load of the comments below and it seems to be a common theme that I share with you and many concerning the Parisians. I won’t tar them all with the same brush, though. I’m sure there are nice Parisians out there who would be patient with us French learners.

    Anyway, I leave for Montréal on Tuesday from London and if I play my cards right, I will be there for 6 months (at the moment it’s only a definite 3). I have been learning French for 7 years now and this trip is my Residence Abroad (3rd year of my Uni course). I honestly cannot wait! I have read nothing but good things about Montréal and Québec (now including this blog entry and the comments) and j’ai tellement hâte to experience it for myself [couldn't resist throwing in a bit o' français, there]!

    I would like to point out to your readers/subscribers to your blog, whatever you call them, that if they would like resources to help them learn about Canadian French, there are some books I have bought through Amazon that are also available on Kindle and as eBooks for your iPad called:

    Le Parler québécois pour les nuls (really interesting background information given on origins of different words and phrases and a little bit of history at the start – ignore the possibly offensive title but it’s the “…for Dummies” series: personally I don’t appreciate such negativity when it comes to language learning!)

    and

    Les 1000 mots indispensables en Québécois (basically organised vocabulary lists both European French > Canadian French and CF > EF, again with explanations but not as detailed as the first one I mentioned).

    Keep up the great work, Benny. I was pleasantly surprised to see that you recently subscribed to me on YouTube and Google (Plus?), too. I will be keeping a vlog for this year’s Uni project all in French (then in Italian for my second placement next year) so I can literally hear my progress. So excited!

    A plus mon ami!

  • Nicole Gauvreau

    I’ve discovered I have a much easier time with aural Québec French, interesting….
    I disagree on the whole Québec as a bilingual province bit, out side of Montréal and Estrie I find the province to be far more francophone than bilingual. legally, Québec isn’t bilingual at all, it’s monolingual French. The only officially bilingual province is New Brunswick.
    On a side note, I would think you (Benny) learned French in Vermont or Maine!

  • Eldred Moye

    This was extremely helpful! I’m a french major at a university and I want to do a study abroad and I was looking at France, of course. But I’ve always been discouraged by the “French attitude”. Maybe Quebec would fit my personality more.

  • Maryse Meunier

    Un petit clin d’oeil du Québec!
    Je suis tombée par hasard sur ta vidéo et l’ai trouvée très intéressante.
    C’est assez fascinant de se regarder à travers les yeux de l’autre!
    Je suis de Montréal moi-même, Québécoise qu’on dit “de souche” en référence à mes ancêtres arrivés ici à l’époque de la Nouvelle-France, au 17è siècle.
    Effectivement, Geneviève fait quelques erreurs dans ses affirmations. Il faut dire que le Canada est un grand pays et que la relation Canada/Québec est très complexe… La perception qu’on en a dépend naturellement de l’expérience qu’on en a. Je suis beaucoup plus vieille qu’elle. Née en 1959 à la fin de l’ancienne aire très catholique dont vous parlez, j’ai l’âge de me souvenir de la vie à cette époque et d’avoir moi-même vécu plusieurs des moments clés qui ont façonné notre histoire contemporaine. Comme c’est en plus mon travail d’enseigner l’histoire du Québec, c’est peut-être plus facile pour moi de voir ses erreurs, mais elle fait un très beau travail pour expliquer les différences dans l’accent et le vocabulaire.
    Bref, je voulais confirmer les précisions que tu as faites pour corriger ces informations erronées et vous dire bravo à tous les deux pour rendre notre pays si sympathique. People all around the world, we really are nice! :0D
    Je place un signet sur ton blogue pour le garder dans mes favoris; je pourrai ainsi lire tes autres aventures… et, à travers tes yeux, voir les autres cette fois.
    Bonne continuation!
    Un petit

  • Robert

    Québec is great. You can get a taste of the xenophobia of France without having to travel across the Atlantic. If you’re lucky, you’ll even enjoy the experience of being verbally attacked for speaking English. This no less in Montréal, a city essentially built by English-speaking merchants and driven out in recent times. Enjoy!

  • tl

    vidéo intéressante merci! De la part d’un français (du nord), il y a aussi les petites différences entre nord/sud ou belgique francophone

  • haamlet montoya

    C’était vraiment excellent ce entretien, Benny. Je suis américain et j’ai étudié français pendant quelques étés à la Ville de Québec. Je suis maintenant à Aix-en-Provence pour continuer mes études, mais Québec me manque beaucoup beaucoup! :) J’ai une exposé dans ma classe ce lundi et je vais parler des différences entre France et Québec (spécialement la langue). Tout ceci va m’aider beaucoup et je vais essayer d’utiliser un petit extrait… merci et bon chance avec tout. Très bon travail.

  • Bruno Balog

    That was a very nice video, but I’m learning French and I still have some doubts. Is it important for me to focus solely on one or the other (french or quebecois)? I’ve been watching movies in the french language and I recently found a lot of movies that had a french and a quebecois dubbing. Would it hurt my learning if I mixed both of them? Should I stick to only one at least while I’m on the basics?

  • Romaena Kahmal

    I actually feel the opposite, that Quebecois are more defensive about their language and quite prejudicial against anglophones, compared to European French speakers. I find the comments about the English being wealthier outdated, and the opposite is also true about forced bilingualism for Quebecois… It’s forced on needed educated non-native french speakers, even if they work in the English system. (hospitals, eg). Immigrants are give stipends for french instruction, but Canadians are not. Example : my OQLF has been graded more harshly than my immigrant counterparts, even though we had been given the same questions, believe me, prejudice is alive and well in this province, but you have the wrong side…. I didn’t have this issue in New Brunswick, however.

  • Reg

    Really helpful to me, as I had just watched Monsieur Lazhar which was my first run-in with Quebec French. Had spent a year in Southern France (Provence) on work assignment, so hearing Quebec French with viens and bien a little like people say it in Marseille brings back pleasant memories.

  • Trevor Bàker-Myers

    J’viens de Montréal! Mais j’vis dans Oregon…

  • Trevor Bàker-Myers

    J’viens de Montréal mais je vis dans Oregon… Et mon père est de Marseille France!
    Vive le Québec!

  • Samuel Machado

    amazing video! I got interested in learning French to go on a move to Montreal in the future. Got even more excited hearing that people are completely open and about the great environment that should it be.

    Also, really amazing you can speak so many languages. I myself am an easy learner with languages and had experienced living in different countries. Now I had settle down a bit in Brazil again (hopefully soon to Canada), but great to hear the final statement of your friend saying what to live in this world is about. Totally into it!

    best of luck for you and in your endeavors!

    um abraço!

  • ARMEL BOURASSA

    cette famme est plaine de marde le francais est partout o canada elle orais du voyajer le canada pour se faire une idea a llying bich in anglais