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C'est ce que j'adore de Montréal, et de sa communauté anglophone: cette façon d'être elle-même vraiment distincte du ROC et des USA. Ça paraît dans la langue utilisée. Cette particularité est pour moi une richesse indéniable de notre ville et du Québec en entier. Même une grande source de fierté! :thumbsup:


Montreal English has a true je ne sais quoi



Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/Montreal+English+true+sais+quoi/6941480/story.html#ixzz2CDJMuBcb



C’est vrai, on parle English differently here.


Entangled with the language of Molière and Mordecai, of Michel Tremblay and the McGarrigles, avec passion and verve, ours is a singular mélange of ancient French and modern geek, of contemporary Québécois and the pervasive English of globalization.


Add a soupçon of Italian, of Arabic, Portuguese, Chinese and español, and what you hear is a jambalaya of English words and Frenchified phrases, bureaucratic jargon and inventive wordplay born in the schoolyard, the office cafeteria and the bedroom.


Yet experts insist that doesn’t mean either English or French are in danger of morphing into one another or losing their mojo, raison d’être or enchantments.


Sherry Simon, a translator and professor at Concordia University, says you have to look to Barcelona to find another city with the “productive dissonance” of Montreal, the creative tensions born of the marriage of languages and vibrant cultures that clash and intersect, fight and make up.


“The city has a life. It is very different from the way it is spoken about in politics,” said Simon, the author of Cities in Translation: Intersections of Language and Memory.


“You have a great deal of fluidity and a great deal of tolerance, and also the development of certain kinds of mixed codes.


“People will switch from one to the other in mid-sentence. What struck me ... and I guess I saw it in my students too, was that people could move so comfortably from one language to the other, the way they move from work to nightlife. The way you would change your clothes for a different event.”


More than 35 years after Quebec’s French Language Charter forced a realignment of the province’s linguistic dynamics, Montreal English – and for that matter, English Montreal – aren’t quite as insular and hermetic as they used to be. Two out of three Montrealers are bilingual, with younger generations having much higher rates of fluency in two or more languages. Montreal has the highest proportion of trilingual people of any city in North America. Not surprisingly, it also has the highest number of linguistically mixed households.


More contact between linguistic communities means more opportunities to borrow words from one another and absorb them into the vernacular of everyday conversation.


For better, and, some might say, for worse, our dialect has a true je ne sais quoi.


Tell your cousins in Oakville and Calgary you aren’t showing off when you sprinkle your conversation with words like CLSC, dép, allongé and caisse pop. You might not even know the English equivalent. Maybe there isn’t one.


In the spring, Montreal anglos have drinks on terrasses, not patios. For us, an entrée is an appetizer, not a main course. We pick up the kids at the garderie, take the métro to Metro, stop at the SAQ before taking the autoroute to the chalet.


The Montreal anglo’s vocabulary is infused with borrowings and linguistic diversions, often in mid-thought, that reflect where we live and who we are now, a minority community happily entrenched in a francophone society on a continent that is overwhelmingly English-speaking.


“Montreal has one of the most distinctive varieties of English in North America. Obviously, the biggest factor in that is the intimate contact it has with French,” says Charles Boberg, a linguistics professor at McGill University and author of The English Language in Canada: Status, History and Comparative Analysis.


“People will use one phrase in English and one phrase in French and back and forth. This happens with non-official languages as well. So you will get a lot of code-switching between English and Italian in St. Leonard, or between English and Greek in Chomedey, between French and other languages. It’s a common phenomenon in Montreal. It’s all around us and I think it is one of the most exciting aspects of the city from a linguistic point of view.”


Think of it as the Norman Conquest, Take Two, as Montreal anglos absorb the official language in the classroom, the workplace and the public square.


“There has been a long-established tradition of anglicisms in Quebec French and Acadian French,” says Boberg. “What has changed now is that English is in the socially inferior position to some extent. At least, that is what the laws are trying to achieve. So Montreal is now receiving a similar onslaught of new gallicisms that are particular to Montreal English.


“The level of bilingualism has changed radically since the Charter (Bill 101) and the (anglo) exodus,” Boberg said. “Those who could leave often did. Those who stayed, with the exception of the elderly, were often more likely to be bilingual, people who felt they could deal with the new reality. And they would have bilingual children, who went to French immersion, or even French, school.”


“Over the last few decades, there has been a transformation,” said Chantal Bouchard, a French professor at McGill University, who teaches language from a historical and sociological perspective. “The number of immigrants coming to Quebec whose children attend French schools means there are far more people who are bilingual and trilingual. It is completely normal to see groups of young people who are switching from French to English effortlessly.”


She cites the acclaimed films of 21-year-old Xavier Dolan as examples of the way young francophones and young anglophones are comfortable with language and with each other.


“This is very different from the way it used to be, when francophones might use the English word because they didn’t know the French term. Now they are better trained in their own language. When they use English, it seems deliberate – more of a game.”


Bouchard believes the same is true for young anglos, who are also more at ease in their second language.


“The more we learn other languages, the more positive it is,” she said.


“Montreal is very interesting because children of immigrants often retain their mother tongue – Arabic, Portuguese, Italian, Greek. And they know English. … That knowledge is very rich. It opens perspectives and opportunities for their future.”


Count Shana Poplack among those who don’t buy the idea that Montreal English is undergoing a sea change.


In the early part of the last decade, Poplack, a linguistics professor at the University of Ottawa, led a comprehensive study of Quebec anglophones to test the notion that the “unparalleled success of Quebec’s language laws and the resulting ‘anglophone exodus’ had fundamentally altered the relationship of English and French in the province.”


Her team’s findings, based on hundreds of interviews and a review of millions of words, dismissed what she calls the “entrenched stereotype” that English and French were morphing to create a new dialect.


“There is this perception that because we are hearing words sprinkling in conversation that there is a change to language,” said Poplack, who has also conducted major studies of French in the Ottawa-Gatineau region. She sees changes in vocabulary as a superficial measure that has little to do with the structural hardwiring that distinguishes one language from another.


“Montreal is unusual because we have English under the influence of another language,” said Catherine Leclerc, a professor of French literature at McGill University with a keen interest in what she calls “co-lingualism,” authors who mix English and French in their writing.


She has noticed that while use of English has waned in French-language texts over the last few decades, anglophone writers have been more likely to incorporate French words and phrases into their stories.


“Post Bill 101, there has been a social evolution. It’s a way to make them visible in the community, an acknowledgement that they are part of it,” Leclerc said.


“For all kinds of reasons, anglos lived through some hard years. Writers may say, ‘Let’s see what I can create from that?’


“But they are also having fun with the language. ‘There is French in my ear? What can I make of it?’ ”







Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/Montreal+English+true+sais+quoi/6941480/story.html#ixzz2CDJJVF00



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C'est ce que j'adore de Montréal, et de sa communauté anglophone: cette façon d'être elle-même vraiment distincte du ROC et des USA. Ça paraît dans la langue utilisée. Cette particularité est pour moi une richesse indéniable de notre ville et du Québec en entier. Même une grande source de fierté! :thumbsup:


Je te seconde à 100% là dessus.


Merci d'avoir copié l'article. Très intéressant !

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