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Old 01-30-2013, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Canada
5,689 posts, read 6,532,688 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ellemint View Post
This author describes Canadians pretty well"

"When speaking to a Canadian, keep an arm's length distance from the person. Maintaining personal space is important to Canadians.
Unlike Australians and Americans, Canadians do not give a lot of eye contact to people who are speaking with them. Why? It probably has something to do with our mania for politeness.
No backslapping, shouting or calling attention to oneself is acceptable. Canadians tend to embarrass easily, so while Canadians are generally casual, they are not loud. On that note, Canadians do not generally express themselves with their hands. Moreover, touching, patting or hugging other men in public is considered socially unacceptable. "

Furthermore:
"Itís often been said about Canadians that while they are polite, they are not a friendly people compared, that is, to their American cousins. Canadians pride themselves on their tolerance and of being non-judgmental, which means that Canadians often times prefer not to express opinions on various subjects for fear of offending, which, to many Canadians, is seen as a faux pas. Do not expect a passionate debate on any issue from a Canadian. Itís just not in the national DNA."


Canada: Public Behaviour - ExecutivePlanet.com
I agree with Chevy and Bimbam. ^ This is the truth-with-a-slant or truthiness, whichever you prefer.

It's like my mother used to say - it's not what you say but how you say it. An actual 'fear' of opening your mouth for fear of offending someone is entirely different from realising you and the other guy are of differing opinions and that if you pursue your end of the argument, he's only going to get offended, you're not going to change your mind, and therefore the argument is pointless.

And depending on which way you slant that 'truth' in that article, it could also be said that what it is saying is that Canadians allow others to have their own, differing opinions without feeling compelled at every turn for it to be our way or the highway.

 
Old 01-31-2013, 08:01 PM
 
558 posts, read 547,266 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChevySpoons View Post
I'd put a finer point on that, and say that our population was made up mostly of English and French speakers, though not necessarily of British subjects and French citizens. (In fact, I'd guess that especially in the wake of the Confederation centennial celebration in 1967, most people in Canada referred to themselves not as "British subjects," but rather "Canadian citizens," which they had been since the 1940s.) By the 1960s, we weren't attracting many people from the UK and France, comparatively speaking; though many immigrants knew either the English or French languages. Jamaica, the Barbados, and India would be good examples of sources of non-UK English speakers, while Haiti, Senegal, and Morocco would be good examples of not-from-France French speakers.

Still, WWII had a big effect on immigration; and if I recall correctly, we got our share of people from places where neither English nor French were neither the native languages nor widely spoken. When I was a child at public schools in Toronto in the 60s and 70s, my classmates included kids whose parents were from Greece, from Hungary, from Germany, from Spain, from Italy, from Japan, from Hong Kong (well, maybe there was English there, in those days, but most of my Hong Kong classmates spoke Cantonese as a first language), from Pakistan, from Holland, and from the Soviet Union, among many others. In short, it would be a mistake to claim that Canadian immigration, post-WWII, consisted only of people from the UK and France.

Heck, the experiences of the parents of my classmates demonstrated that. Example: a Jewish classmate's mother bore the Nazi concentration camp tattoo that she got at Auschwitz--she always showed it to us kids so "you know what the Nazis did to people like your classmate Howie, and you will make sure that it will never happen again." Trust me, Mrs. Weinberg, if I have anything to say about it, it won't!

I'm not sure how or why this matters. It is true, in my experience, I've only personally known about five Latin Americans who have come to Canada (from El Salvador, Costa Rica, Chile, Panama, and Brazil), though I'm sure that we have welcomed many other from Latin America. But I do know that we tend to attract Spanish-speakers from outside the Americas. An ex-girlfriend who came from Spain, for example, and her immediate family, and her extended family, and all their friends and relatives, and so on and so on. All from Spain, and all happy here in Canada.

If you want to hear the Spanish language in Canada, you can; but it will not the Spanish of Latin America--it will be the Spanish of Spain. Heck, my Spanish ex-girlfriend used to buy the daily "El Pais" newspaper (out of Madrid, Spain) in Toronto; but to the best of my knowledge, you cannot buy a Latin American daily paper in Canada.

Still, I would suggest that Canada's dearth of Latinos is more than made up for by our influx of Indians, Pakistanis, Chinese, Sri Lankans, Vietnamese, South Africans, Zimbabweans, Cambodians, Laotians, Iranians, Iraquis, Ethopians, Jordanians, Angolans, Russians, Egyptians, Nigerians, and people from so many other places.

Some still come from the UK and France, I'll admit.

Oh, and the US. Yes, some Americans come here too.
My point is America has always had a large ethnically diverse group of Europeans, we have a large ethnically diverse group of Latin Americans, and we have a large black population, who genetically come from different tribes and ethnic groups of west Africa. Not to mention our ethnically diverse asian population

Canada is missing large chunks of the world's ethnic groups, that the US has, so it far to conclude the the US is more racially diverse and ethnically diverse than Canada.
 
Old 01-31-2013, 09:44 PM
 
2,096 posts, read 3,848,190 times
Reputation: 1214
Quote:
Originally Posted by ellemint View Post
On that note, Canadians do not generally express themselves with their hands. Moreover, touching, patting or hugging other men in public is considered socially unacceptable. "

"Itís often been said about Canadians that while they are polite, they are not a friendly people compared, that is, to their American cousins. Canadians pride themselves on their tolerance and of being non-judgmental, which means that Canadians often times prefer not to express opinions on various subjects for fear of offending, which, to many Canadians, is seen as a faux pas. Do not expect a passionate debate on any issue from a Canadian. Itís just not in the national DNA."
I gotta disagree with both of these points. Canadians talk with their hands noticeably more than Americans. My hypothesis is because of their national origin as a fur trading colony.

I think the friendliness of Americans and Canadians varies a lot depending on where you are. People in the northwest, upper Midwest and northeast are about as reserved as Canadians. When I travel to Canada I find people are generally more engaging than the people here in Oregon, though maybe it's because they can tell I'm from abroad and people tend to be more outgoing to foreigners.

People in the lower Midwest and South are indeed outgoing, but there's a dark side to that as well - while they are more likely to care about strangers, they're also more likely to care about what strangers are doing ie get into their business.

The social coldness of cities like Vancouver and Toronto has as much to do with their level of urbanity and anonymousness as it does with the fact they are Canadian cities. If you go to northern Ontario or rural BC/Prairies, the people aren't any less friendly or outgoing than rural Americans. Newfoundlanders are known to be especially friendly.
 
Old 01-31-2013, 09:49 PM
 
2,096 posts, read 3,848,190 times
Reputation: 1214
Quote:
Originally Posted by drknoble View Post
My point is America has always had a large ethnically diverse group of Europeans, we have a large ethnically diverse group of Latin Americans, and we have a large black population, who genetically come from different tribes and ethnic groups of west Africa. Not to mention our ethnically diverse asian population

Canada is missing large chunks of the world's ethnic groups, that the US has, so it far to conclude the the US is more racially diverse and ethnically diverse than Canada.
I think the difference is the fact that with the exception of Jews and Italians, most of those European groups have Anglicized to the point they might as well be Anglo-Saxon, and in the case of African Americans, it's pretty meaningless what African tribes they descended from since they have little tangible connection to any of them anymore. The Latin American popularity is overwhelmingly Mexican and Puerto Rican and there really still aren't very many Asian Americans outside of California, Washington state, the Northeastern seaboard and a few other pockets here and there.
 
Old 01-31-2013, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
11,265 posts, read 13,150,322 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by belmont22 View Post
I gotta disagree with both of these points. Canadians talk with their hands noticeably more than Americans. My hypothesis is because of their national origin as a fur trading colony.

I think the friendliness of Americans and Canadians varies a lot depending on where you are. People in the northwest, upper Midwest and northeast are about as reserved as Canadians. When I travel to Canada I find people are generally more engaging than the people here in Oregon, though maybe it's because they can tell I'm from abroad and people tend to be more outgoing to foreigners.

People in the lower Midwest and South are indeed outgoing, but there's a dark side to that as well - while they are more likely to care about strangers, they're also more likely to care about what strangers are doing ie get into their business.

The social coldness of cities like Vancouver and Toronto has as much to do with their level of urbanity and anonymousness as it does with the fact they are Canadian cities. If you go to northern Ontario or rural BC/Prairies, the people aren't any less friendly or outgoing than rural Americans. Newfoundlanders are known to be especially friendly.
Nice, belmont22. I agree.
 
Old 02-01-2013, 01:39 PM
 
2,816 posts, read 5,383,911 times
Reputation: 3758
Quote:
Originally Posted by belmont22 View Post
I gotta disagree with both of these points. Canadians talk with their hands noticeably more than Americans. My hypothesis is because of their national origin as a fur trading colony.
What's that got to do with the price of fish?
 
Old 02-03-2013, 10:01 AM
 
266 posts, read 1,099,744 times
Reputation: 108
I don't know if what I have observed is due to nationality or not... but after being away from Canada for 10 years and then returning after living in the USA I must sadly admit that I do believe Canadians are more reserved than Americans. It is hard for me to say this as I AM Canadian... but I really did notice a difference.

I first moved to Toronto for a year - and I am aware that Toronto is considered to be a pretty "chilly" city socially. I did find this to be true, although of course I began to make friends right before I left after a year.

I am now back in Saskatchewan, which is where I grew up - although I am now in a small town of around 19,000. I found that people were very wary and closed off - UNLESS they were from elsewhere. My first social connections were with a woman from England and a woman from Africa. Once you see people on a regular basis, they "defrost", so to speak, but it was rather disappointing and surprising for me.

I'm not sure whether to conclude both of these experiences are because of the extreme populations... huge city and very small town, or whether it is just the Canadian way. In any case, I found people much friendlier down south.
 
Old 02-03-2013, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,689 posts, read 6,532,688 times
Reputation: 8188
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitty71 View Post
I don't know if what I have observed is due to nationality or not... but after being away from Canada for 10 years and then returning after living in the USA I must sadly admit that I do believe Canadians are more reserved than Americans. It is hard for me to say this as I AM Canadian... but I really did notice a difference.

I first moved to Toronto for a year - and I am aware that Toronto is considered to be a pretty "chilly" city socially. I did find this to be true, although of course I began to make friends right before I left after a year.

I am now back in Saskatchewan, which is where I grew up - although I am now in a small town of around 19,000. I found that people were very wary and closed off - UNLESS they were from elsewhere. My first social connections were with a woman from England and a woman from Africa. Once you see people on a regular basis, they "defrost", so to speak, but it was rather disappointing and surprising for me.

I'm not sure whether to conclude both of these experiences are because of the extreme populations... huge city and very small town, or whether it is just the Canadian way. In any case, I found people much friendlier down south.
It's not about Canada in this case - it's the freeze small towns give to outsiders. People complain about that on the US boards here all the time, and on the Rural Living board.

Small town people are often standoffish from outsiders and the further away they are from large cities the more standoffish they are. The small town I live in used to be worse than it is now to newcomers in the days when travel was not so quick, but then when their own children left home forcing them (the small towners) out of their comfort zones, most small towns became much more open.

And outsiders anywhere are always more outgoing because they are trying to make connections. People with roots in an area already don't necessarily feel the need to make more connections and are much more selective about who they let into their circle.
 
Old 02-03-2013, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Vancouver
12,670 posts, read 8,740,385 times
Reputation: 7281
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitty71 View Post
I don't know if what I have observed is due to nationality or not... but after being away from Canada for 10 years and then returning after living in the USA I must sadly admit that I do believe Canadians are more reserved than Americans. It is hard for me to say this as I AM Canadian... but I really did notice a difference.

I first moved to Toronto for a year - and I am aware that Toronto is considered to be a pretty "chilly" city socially. I did find this to be true, although of course I began to make friends right before I left after a year.

I am now back in Saskatchewan, which is where I grew up - although I am now in a small town of around 19,000. I found that people were very wary and closed off - UNLESS they were from elsewhere. My first social connections were with a woman from England and a woman from Africa. Once you see people on a regular basis, they "defrost", so to speak, but it was rather disappointing and surprising for me.

I'm not sure whether to conclude both of these experiences are because of the extreme populations... huge city and very small town, or whether it is just the Canadian way. In any case, I found people much friendlier down south.
I think most would agree that Canadians in general are more reserved, except maybe some gregarious Quebeckers
I don't equate that with being unfriendly, although I can see how it is interpreted that way. Real friendships take longer. I for one, am really uncomfortable with that instant you're my friend approach I get from some store clerks in the U.S. It has nothing to do with me being unfriendly, it is just my boundaries are different. However I'm just as uncomfortable if I feel a clerk is grovelling at my feet.
It really is a personal thing, since two different people in the same town or city can have totally opposite feeling of how friendly the place is.
Vancouver often gets slammed by people saying it's hard to make friends etc. However usually these are people who have left behind a circle of friends that took years to create and expect somehow to have the same thing in a much shorter space of time.
It's funny really. I read trip reports from tourists from the U.S. and the vast majority comment on how nice, polite and friendly Canadians are. I guess the grass is always greener
 
Old 02-03-2013, 01:56 PM
 
Location: East of the Mississippi and South of Bluegrass
4,453 posts, read 3,751,922 times
Reputation: 9592
Quote:
Originally Posted by Natnasci View Post
It's funny really. I read trip reports from tourists from the U.S. and the vast majority comment on how nice, polite and friendly Canadians are. I guess the grass is always greener
It is the absolute and unadulterated truth (from my humble experience), Canadians are not only nice, polite and friendly they are our dearest Continental neighbors and if I ever get lost, scared, or forsaken in this world I hope and pray it is a Canadian who finds me! God Bless Canada and all of her people, wherever they are from!

Sometimes I have to wonder what posesses anyone to pit one city against another, one country against another, one continent against another, one race against another, one ethnicity against another...what is the point, really? We are all sometimes so vastly different and yet we have far much more in common than we do not. Just my humblest of opinions on a slow Super Bowl Sunday...

Best regards, sincerely

HomeIsWhere...

Last edited by HomeIsWhere...; 02-03-2013 at 02:49 PM.. Reason: what else? Spelling
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