Written by Julie Barlow
The American Association of Teachers of French is holding its Annual Conference in Montreal this summer on July 7th, 2011. A member of the AATF recently wrote to us asking if the French spoken in Quebec is really a “dialect” as he had heard from a colleague.
The answer is no. But let’s back up a bit.
What is generally described as a Quebec dialect is a Quebec slang called joual. It is one among many local registers of the language. It is therefore extremely derogatory – or ill-advised– to reduce Quebec French to its slang, just as much as it would be derogatory to reduce American English to its slang, or French from France to argot. Read more »
by Jean-Benoît Nadeau
I am always amazed by the number of strong opinions people have about language.
In French, all you have to say is ‘anglicism,’ ‘dictée’, or ‘bon usage,’ and people’s ears perk up. English speakers are preoccupied with Globish. Spanish speakers with Spanglish.
Language is a source of fascination. The more words there are, the stronger the rhetoric gets.
Julie and I thought about calling this weekly blog column “The Language Anthropologist.” But we thought One Million Words said more. We will be writing about linguistics, but our main focus will be interesting facts, as well as the many beliefs, true or false, that people have about language. Read more »