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Old 11-08-2013, 01:57 PM
 
34,374 posts, read 41,463,803 times
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Some informative reading on where most of the non francophones came from..
English-speaking Quebecer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Or a more overall view of Quebec history.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Quebec
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Montreal, Quebec
108 posts, read 218,545 times
Reputation: 85
I'm an American living in the Montreal area. I'm fairly new here, so I'm still learning my way around. This is a French province, and I am more than happy to speak French. I want to be respectful and polite. But there are times in which people just want to speak English, even when I speak to them in French. Even though I live in an Anglophone area, I have noticed this in other parts of Montreal as well. There are always exceptions though!

When I go to other parts Montreal or downtown, I hear quite a bit of English on the streets (especially with the younger crowds). But when you go into some of the stores and businesses, people tend to speak more French than English. Same thing with government officials. However, when I went to go get my social insurance number, I spoke and answered questions entirely in French. But as soon as I gave the gentleman my American passport, he immediately switched to English. I smiled and told him, "On pourrait continuer en français, si vous voulez.", but he said "I thought you would be more comfortable in English". I thought that was nice, but I certainly wasn't expecting it!

Again, I'm just going based on my own experiences here. French is the language of Montreal, but I also agree that I hear a lot of English here as well.
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:28 AM
pdw
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
1,473 posts, read 1,963,742 times
Reputation: 857
Quote:
Originally Posted by DD78 View Post
I'm an American living in the Montreal area. I'm fairly new here, so I'm still learning my way around. This is a French province, and I am more than happy to speak French. I want to be respectful and polite. But there are times in which people just want to speak English, even when I speak to them in French. Even though I live in an Anglophone area, I have noticed this in other parts of Montreal as well. There are always exceptions though!

When I go to other parts Montreal or downtown, I hear quite a bit of English on the streets (especially with the younger crowds). But when you go into some of the stores and businesses, people tend to speak more French than English. Same thing with government officials. However, when I went to go get my social insurance number, I spoke and answered questions entirely in French. But as soon as I gave the gentleman my American passport, he immediately switched to English. I smiled and told him, "On pourrait continuer en français, si vous voulez.", but he said "I thought you would be more comfortable in English". I thought that was nice, but I certainly wasn't expecting it!

Again, I'm just going based on my own experiences here. French is the language of Montreal, but I also agree that I hear a lot of English here as well.
Why can't it just be *a* language of Montreal?
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Old 11-12-2013, 09:57 PM
 
637 posts, read 644,716 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdw View Post
English in Montreal is not a recent phenomenon as you are treating it as, Manhattangirl.
We have a long, well-established history in the city, and Montreal is also an historically English-majority city. Virtually every heritage building you see in the entire city was built by anglos, including in the very oldest districts which are for some bizarre reason associated with "Frenchness". English in Montreal is no more the result of immigration than French is.
I'm shocked that you would find this this shocking.
I am certainly not treating it as a recent phenomenon. I never visited Quebec before four years ago so I would have no comparison. French is the official language and there are people who want to secede etc. so I am surprised that there is so much English. I am also surprised that so many non-French speakers migrate to a French-speaking city. I don't know why this surprises me but it does. Why not just go to New York where there are thousands of people from your country? LOL
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Old 11-13-2013, 05:24 AM
 
34,374 posts, read 41,463,803 times
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Originally Posted by manhattangirl View Post
Why not just go to New York where there are thousands of people from your country? LOL
Theres that problem of immigration.
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Old 11-13-2013, 06:49 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,942 posts, read 27,343,960 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manhattangirl View Post
I am certainly not treating it as a recent phenomenon. I never visited Quebec before four years ago so I would have no comparison. French is the official language and there are people who want to secede etc. so I am surprised that there is so much English. I am also surprised that so many non-French speakers migrate to a French-speaking city. I don't know why this surprises me but it does. Why not just go to New York where there are thousands of people from your country? LOL
Most nationalities can be found in Montreal as well, and when you think about it there is no real difference between moving to Montreal and learning French and moving to New York and learning English, to Berlin and learning German or to Stockholm and learning Swedish.

Of course, one thing that is fairly mystifying is someone willingly choosing to immigrate to Montreal and then bitterly complaining that every single aspect of life from A to Z without exception does not take place in English.

We do have a few of these people in Quebec it is true.
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Old 11-13-2013, 07:24 AM
 
3,072 posts, read 4,277,280 times
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Yep, I have a friend here (from Manhattan) who still ******* about French, she's been here 10 years. Still can't speak a basic phrase, despite her being entitled to free francisation classes while I have to pay for them!
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Old 11-13-2013, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,942 posts, read 27,343,960 times
Reputation: 8602
Quote:
Originally Posted by aliss2 View Post
Yep, I have a friend here (from Manhattan) who still ******* about French, she's been here 10 years. Still can't speak a basic phrase, despite her being entitled to free francisation classes while I have to pay for them!
Some people are likely destined to be unhappy, what can I say...
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Old 11-13-2013, 01:24 PM
pdw
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
1,473 posts, read 1,963,742 times
Reputation: 857
Quote:
Originally Posted by manhattangirl View Post
I am certainly not treating it as a recent phenomenon. I never visited Quebec before four years ago so I would have no comparison. French is the official language and there are people who want to secede etc. so I am surprised that there is so much English. I am also surprised that so many non-French speakers migrate to a French-speaking city. I don't know why this surprises me but it does. Why not just go to New York where there are thousands of people from your country? LOL
There's your problem. You're calling it a "French-speaking city" when it's a bilingual city.
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Old 11-13-2013, 02:13 PM
 
Location: Montreal > Quebec > Canada
476 posts, read 426,525 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdw View Post
There's your problem. You're calling it a "French-speaking city" when it's a bilingual city.
pdw, have you ever been East of the Decarie, North of the rivière des Prairies or on the South shore?
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