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Old 05-19-2015, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Toronto
12,581 posts, read 11,130,951 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mouldy Old Schmo View Post
It seems like el cheapo made-for-television movies are part of English Canadian culture.
huh
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:07 PM
 
Location: Montreal
579 posts, read 467,873 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
''Dumb'' questions from Canadians who obviously have mostly American-oriented civics knowledge are par for the course. Happened every day, if not on every tour.

And BTW, people in Quebec aren't significantly *less* clueless than other Canadians, although they are less likely to use references to the American governance model. Though they are much more likely to make snarky or cynical comments about Canada, the monarchy, etc. (Especially the monarchy.)
Their different brands of cluelessness is more or less a function of how civics are taught in each, and how each group sees the federal government.

In Quebec, the population is taught to think of provincial governance first, if only because the federal government doesn't provide as much services with immediate, day-to-day impact as the provincial government.

But many already think of the federal government as a faceless entity. And for Quebecers, the monarchy is more or less the symbol of historical oppression.
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:52 PM
 
3,806 posts, read 5,197,923 times
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I have been thinking about this issue a bit for a few days, and it sort of dovetails with something else I have thought about in the past so I wanted to throw this out for folks to support or shoot down.

It seems to me that the vast grasslands in the center of North America are a place where space and distance finally overcame the teeming populations of immigrants. If you've travelled in the area you are aware of how towns rapidly grow smaller and farther apart once you leave the forested and formerly forested areas until nearly disappearing altogether. This lack of people is itself a barrier to cultural transmission as while some people from the east kept pressing west until they found better lands near the Pacific many of the people in this area had ancestors who immigrated directly there without a period of settlement in the east and a chance of acquiring any of the culture of the eastern areas.

This holds true in Canada and the US, but Canada has the additional barrier of Quebec which also serves as a physical barrier against the direct transmission of the traditional English culture of the Maritime Provinces directly west. As a result the English Canadian culture in Ontario is already rather different from that farther east, and these two cultural areas had little chance to cross pollinate with each other. Moreover they have an easier time historically and today cross pollinating with their American neighbors than with a different English Canadian cultural group. All this serves to produce magnify the different strains of traditional English Canadian culture and make it more likely they'll adopt the larger and geographically more accessible monoculture to the south.

That's my two cents. Thanks to the topic creator for making such an interesting topic.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:05 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, QC, Canada
3,402 posts, read 4,443,775 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
On the other hand, this is an extreme rare example but I have family members (one of which is my wife) and friends who've been travelling in Western Canada and also SW Ontario and had people overhear them speaking French (some also ask what we're speaking sometimes) and ask if they're from France, and when they are told ''Canada'', the questioner is flabbergasted.
I absolutely don't believe this.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:07 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,937 posts, read 27,326,583 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse44 View Post
I absolutely don't believe this.
As I said, it's an extreme and rare occurrence but it does happen. It's even happened to my wife.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, QC, Canada
3,402 posts, read 4,443,775 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
As I said, it's an extreme and rare occurrence but it does happen. It's even happened to my wife.
So you're saying that someone(s), despite being able to recognize the language was FRENCH, was flabbergasted that they weren't from France, as in, had NO idea that there is a large French-speaking population in not only their same country, but their neighbouring province?

That's a tall order.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:11 AM
 
18,263 posts, read 10,362,943 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse44 View Post
So you're saying that someone(s), despite being able to recognize the language was FRENCH, was flabbergasted that they weren't from France, as in, had NO idea that there is a large French-speaking population in not only their same country, but their neighbouring province?

That's a tall order.
Not if they were visiting American tourists........
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Canada
5,690 posts, read 6,532,688 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse44 View Post
So you're saying that someone(s), despite being able to recognize the language was FRENCH, was flabbergasted that they weren't from France, as in, had NO idea that there is a large French-speaking population in not only their same country, but their neighbouring province?

That's a tall order.
One way I can see this happening is if the person speaking French was dressed differently than the local norm, particularly in a very stylish way. Last summer one of our visitors came from Germany and in his tight European pants he would never be mistaken for a local in spite of the fact that German is a very common language here and raises no eyebrows. There isn't an assumption here that if you hear German you must be from Germany.

So I too find it hard to believe that the mere fact of hearing French would cause a Canadian in Canada to assume that someone is from France, but I can see other ways for that to happen. I assume that Acajack and his wife are very stylish people.

(I must say, that even though I'm married I still have eyes and that German was a very handsome man. I felt a little giddy.)
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Old 05-20-2015, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,937 posts, read 27,326,583 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by netwit View Post
One way I can see this happening is if the person speaking French was dressed differently than the local norm, particularly in a very stylish way. Last summer one of our visitors came from Germany and in his tight European pants he would never be mistaken for a local in spite of the fact that German is a very common language here and raises no eyebrows. There isn't an assumption here that if you hear German you must be from Germany.

So I too find it hard to believe that the mere fact of hearing French would cause a Canadian in Canada to assume that someone is from France, but I can see other ways for that to happen. I assume that Acajack and his wife are very stylish people.

(I must say, that even though I'm married I still have eyes and that German was a very handsome man. I felt a little giddy.)
You might be onto something there. I won't get into stylish vs. non-stylish, but there is a segment of the population in Quebec that dresses fairly differently from the North American mainstream.

It could be that many in Anglo-Canada make assumptions that Quebecers are exactly like them except for the language, and therefore expect them to dress exactly the same as them. Which is certainly the case for at least some Quebecers... but certainly not all of them.

Hence the possible assumption among some that French-speaking people probably aren't from Canada because of a) their language + b) their look.
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:36 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,690 posts, read 6,532,688 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
You might be onto something there. I won't get into stylish vs. non-stylish, but there is a segment of the population in Quebec that dresses fairly differently from the North American mainstream.

It could be that many in Anglo-Canada make assumptions that Quebecers are exactly like them except for the language, and therefore expect them to dress exactly the same as them. Which is certainly the case for at least some Quebecers... but certainly not all of them.

Hence the possible assumption among some that French-speaking people probably aren't from Canada because of a) their language + b) their look.
Just to be clear, I'm not calling you a liar. I've never had the impression that you've ever lied about your experiences in life. But I just think that something else must have been going on. I find that I can usually spot Americans by a combination of things - everything from a walk, to the clothes or the haircut adds a little something that is just different, even if it is hard to put a finger on it exactly. Same thing with Europeans.

And I'll just bet you are stylish! That is the picture I have of you in my head anyway.
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