Re: Language differences in FRENCH

Subject: Re: Language differences in FRENCH
From: Paul Branchaud <paul -at- VEDGE -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 15 Aug 1997 11:22:51 -0400

I wanted to post a reply to this thread on Wednesday, but my mailbox died
on me. :(

Anyhoo, speaking as one of the 5 or 6 Montreal-area Technical Writers I
have discovered on TECHWR-L and WINHELP-L, I can confirm the fact that
Quebecois French is very different from Parisian French (then again,
Marseilles French is a world away from Paris French, and they originate
from the same country!).

I spoke with our resident French-language web guru, Patrice, and he
suggested the following sites: -- The Office de la Langue Francaise, the government
agency that seeks to protect and defend the French language; don't get me
started on these folks... The /service/pages/diskling/233.htm page deals
with French computer terms, as approved by the OLF. -- A search site, based in France. -- Familiar and friendly Yahoo!, based in France.
Many links point back to the American Yahoo database.

You may also want to check out the Universite de Montreal site
(, it has a wealth of resources and has been wired
for quite a while.

Regarding the person(s) who claimed that Canadians had bastardised the
French language, I suggest you tread VERY lightly in that minefield.
Language is a sensitive issue in Canada, more so in Quebec because it is
tied to a plethora of political struggles that is very hard for a
non-resident to understand. One could just as easily say that Americans
bastardised British English. Many environmental and sociological factors
enter into the equation. "Franglais" (the mixing of English and French) is
not only spoken on the streets, it is a part of the development of French
in Quebec (you can't be surrounded by ~325 million Anglophones and not be
affected). It is unfair to call it a bastardisation, when it is an
outgrowth of the migration of our ancestors who decided to settle in this
wonderfully nordic environment. And if anyone starts saying derogatory
things about Acadians (Cajuns in Lou'siana), I'll fall all over you like
an anvil on a coyote. ;)


Bilingual Montrealer with a proud Acadian heritage!
Paul Branchaud "Men, do you fear that, one day, your
paul -at- vedge -dot- com wife will run her hands through your
Technical Writer hair... and you won't be there?!"
Visual Edge Software, Ltd. -- Richard Jeni (on hair loss)
--My opinions are rarely shared by Visual Edge and other smart folks--

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