Canadian French

Franc   Tuesday, April 13, 2004, 01:26 GMT
Not all French Canadians roll their R's the way it's described above. That sound is mostly found in older people, people living around Montreal or Francophones outside the Province of Quebec i.e. Franco Ontarians etc...

The rolling of the R's sound is fast becoming a generational thing in Quebec where you will seldom hear that sound coming out of younger Quebecois whereas you will still hear many Franco Ontarian youths sound that way...I'd say the English influence (judging by the way French people outside Quebec sound) definitely has something to do with the R sound...the rolling of the R's sound was also a staple of working class Montreal neighbourhoods which is where French and English people used to interact on a day-today basis in pre-Quiet Revolution Quebec. French in Quebec is shifting just like American English is becoming more Mid West less Brahim, less Southern if you see what I mean...same in Quebec is happening but drawing parrallells would be useless...

Hope this helps but again, this is just my private observations from having lived all over Quebec, Western Canada and Ontario...nothing scientific so please don't flame me!!! Also, in Ontario, the rolling sound seems to disappear as one approaches East End Ottawa (Vanier, Orleans etc...) whereas if you go to Northern Ontario, it becomes more predominant especially in places where the French population is in a minority situation i.e. Sault Ste Marie or Niagara or Windsor in the South etc. I've met people from Hearst, Ontario (which is probably 80% French speaking and somewhat geographically isolated) who sounded like Montreal-area French Quebecers whereas Francophones from more mixed French / English communities like Timmins (also up North) may have had more of an English accent when they spoke their native French...again, just something that I've noticed over the years...

Moreover, Eastern Quebecers, especially in the Saguenay and Cote-Nord regions sound VERY different from their Southern Quebec counterparts. You will not hear rolled Rs in these parts of Quebec...I've always wondered what influenced the language to sound so different in these places...some say the Native influence in these Northern regions may have influenced the accent...also, New Brunswick and parts of the Gaspe Peninsula have their own accent...not sure if they roll their R's there but again, their ancestors came from a difference part of France, more in the South I believe...

People in the Saguenay have had Native, Scottish and Scandinavian influences so it may explain the difference between their accent and the more mainstream Quebec accent...Whereas Americans have had very detailed studies made about the various accents etc, I have yet to see anything published about French Canadian accents and how they evolved over the years...With American or Canadian English, there are very precise analytical terms to describe even hints of influences i.e. Northern Shift, Canadian Raise etc but nothing similar that I've seen concerning the French accents of Canada and especially the Quebec ones...Maybe accents are not as "important" in the French speaking world whereas we all know how "big" they can be in places such as England and to a lesser degree, here in North America...anyways, sorry for dragging on so long but this is something I've always been facinated with...
Clark   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 07:34 GMT
Franc, on the radio, it sounds as if the Francophones speak with an almost Parisian accent. Is this true? I am no good with the different French acents, but it just seems to me that the French I have heard on Canadian radio is "proper" compared to the French I have heard from Canada when not on the radio.
nic   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 07:46 GMT
I don't understand what you mean by parisian accent, because people who are living in Paris are for 70% originally native from "province" (oustsie of Paris), like me, i am from the south. There's no real accent in Paris.
Jordi   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 12:18 GMT
What Clark means is that what you normally listen to on Quebec television and radio are people with what is called un "accent neutre", meaning an accent based on the prestigious forms of northern European French. The very same thing happens in national and regionals broadcasts all over France where regional accents are not what you will mostly find. I watch TV5 International with TV programmes from all French-speaking countries. The usual thing for a European French speaker is to understand very well the interviewers but not so well the interviewees who keep a more Quebecois type of French. The thing is I believe they call that "Français International" in Quebec itself. It's as if Americans had to put on a more British accent in their national television and radio broadcasts.
nic   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 13:27 GMT
I understand what you mean, it's like when yu learn english at school, you only learn the neutral one which is not neutral in fact.
nic   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 13:29 GMT
It's just the parisian accent is (like some others) different with people. Some old parisians have a typical accent, the young people do not have.
Example with Jean Gabin who was (for those who don't know him) a french actor from the 30's to the 70's.
Clark   Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 22:32 GMT
Thanks Jordi. Do the schools teach this Neutral Accent as well in Canada?
Jordi   Thursday, April 15, 2004, 04:04 GMT
Clark I believe "educated" Quebecois are supposed to speak a more "neutral" French and that must have an effect on education. I would imagine school teachers would speak "more posh" so to say. Then most Quebecois have been made to believe that their accent is not as worthy as European French. I had a Quebecois girl friend ages ago and I think my European French accent really put her on when we first met. What I normally perceive in Quebecois television is that the higher you go on the education and social scale the closer the accent gets to European French. Then you must not forget the importance of the Catholic Church in Quebec and Quebecois schooling and the priests I've heard normally have a "more neutral" French. I've never lived in Quebec but I'm very much interested in socio-linguistics. Perhaps somebody who really is from Quebec could add his own experience. The fact is "rural" Quebecois can be very hard on European French ears and sometimes somewhat hard to follow. It's like the first time you hear a heavy Scottish accent in English. The fact is "neutral French" is also taught in all regional European French schools. Students will often have a more or less heavy regional accent but even teachers born in the south are expected to speak this "neutral French". That doesn't happen in English at all where correctness has nothing to do with accents and Australians or Americans keep their native brogue. The situation is also evolving in Great Britain where regional accents are more and more accepted. Not France or French-speaking countries though. It's considered part of French "grandeur" to speak like the First Minister.
Lo Duca de Savouè   Thursday, April 15, 2004, 05:14 GMT
"Not France or French-speaking countries though. It's considered part of French "grandeur" to speak like the First Minister."

Nous devons unir et se libérer de l'arrogance du Franchimande!

La Savouè est una de les més viélyes nacions d'Eropa, mas l'at étâ rètatsiêye a la France, en 1860, por un acôr d’aneccion. La France n'at pas rèspèctâ los tèrmenos de quint'acôr d'aneccion (zona neutra et zona frantse). La Liga de Savouè, crèâ en 1994, est devegna en muens d'un'anâ la principala force de proposicion en Savouè. L'at restituâ u Poplo de Savouè sa histouèro et fondâ sa logica sur la dèmontracion de la nan-validitât de l'acôr d'aneccion de 1860.

La Liga de Savouè volt rècorpar et ramassar totes les pèrsonas de Savouè dècidâs a contribuar a la indèpendança de la Savouè. Luen d'étre una utopia, la reconstitucion de la Savouè en Etat d'Eropa n'est que la suite logica d'un long vi histourico et politico. L'indèpendança pot pèrmètre a la Savouè de rèprendre sa mârtse come Etat d'Eropa indèpendant, de rèconstruire un payis que la fondacion dèmocratica serat ôgmentâ, de rètrovar una prospèritât liyêe a l'uvèrtura èconomica et culturala sur l'Eropa, après mile ans de totses de commèrço, d'ar ou oncor de science. Ben plus qu'una sempla séparacion, queli processus pot sèrvir de modèlo a de nombros poplos de noutron continent, por alar en-dessus des grants Etats çentralisators, qui, u jhorn d'houê, prèsentent des problèmos por la dèmocratia et les relacions internacionales.


"Allobroges vaillants! Dans vos vertes campagnes
Accordez-moi toujours asile et sûreté
Car j'aime à respirer l'air pur de vos montagnes:
Je suis la Liberté! La Liberté!"
Jordi   Thursday, April 15, 2004, 06:40 GMT
Sénher Duc
Me podetz dire si la Comtat de Niça fa partida de la Savouè e si parlon la meteissa lenga que vos? Per què l'imne nacional de Savouè es en lenga francdhimanda? Compreni pas. Qu'es acó? És pas seriós. Se deve revirar.
nic to Lo Duca de Savouè   Thursday, April 15, 2004, 07:15 GMT
Et comment tu feras avec le bout suisse?

La Savoie parlait le franco-provençal, à Nice on parlait d'abord italien puis un dérivé du sarde qui n'est rien d'autre que le français. Nice appartenait aux bourguignons, ce qui n'a jamais été le cas de la Savoie puisque c'était un duché.
Lo Duca   Friday, April 16, 2004, 08:16 GMT
The county of Nice was a part of Savoy in 1388-1543, 1696-1705, 1713-1744. The years it was not a part of Savoy it was occupied by France. From 1814-1860 it was a part of the Kingdom of Sardinia that also included Savoy and was ruled by the formerly dukes of Savoy. The savoisien language likely influenced the niçart language but niçart is considered in the occitan branch of languages not francoprovençal.

"Les Allobroges" was written in 1856. By then Savoy was occupied by France and was a french speaking region. Why it hasn't been translated to savoisien I don't know. Though it would be a good idea.

We call on all Savoisiens to unite as one nation. Those in France, Italy and Switzerland.
nic   Friday, April 16, 2004, 08:52 GMT
What will be the capital? Genève? Grenoble? Turin?
Jordi   Friday, April 16, 2004, 09:05 GMT
If I were a dreamer, I would choose a small historic town in the heart of Savoy itself to give it a symbolic statute and value. I wouldn't want the important Savoyese cities quarelling over petty questions when so much is to be done in the new state...
nic   Friday, April 16, 2004, 09:15 GMT

They did, Chambéry has been the capital for a few time, but it has been considered to close with the french state.

There's a difference between the Savoie and Nice, the savoyards never wanted to be french or italian, they just wanted to be independant. The niçois have deliberatly choosen to be french and not italian or independant.

At least, Aostians and piemontais have been so massacred, i don't think today there are enough of them who survived. They just considered themselves as italians.

If Savoie became