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OT: Learning (Quebec) French

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Old
05-21-2012, 01:58 PM
  #26
Teufelsdreck
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Originally Posted by AnAverageHF View Post
It may work in terms of formal, written French. But it's doubtful it makes any significant change to how people actucally speak in their daily lives.
I last visited Paris in 1998 but at the time I was struck by the prevalence of anglicisms. The cumulative influence of movies, TV programs, the web, and music emanating from the US and Britain has been profound.

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05-21-2012, 02:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Teufelsdreck View Post
I last visited Paris in 1998 but at the time I was struck by the prevalence of anglicisms. The cumulative influence of movies, TV programs, the web, and music emanating from the US and Britain has been profound.

Yes, because strong linguistic interfaces generally do have that effect, the reverse, conservation movements working through the formalization of language (usually only seen in written form) via institutional means (for example here in Quebec: Office de la Langue Française) typically only effect the dialect in its most formal applications.

One of the big ironies of worries about "anglicisms" is how heavily influenced English was by French in the first place.

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05-21-2012, 03:35 PM
  #28
ChoseLa
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I'm coming from Paris, spoke pure Quebec french and everybody understood everything, didn't even notice or cared.

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05-21-2012, 06:00 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by AnAverageHF View Post
Yes, because strong linguistic interfaces generally do have that effect, the reverse, conservation movements working through the formalization of language (usually only seen in written form) via institutional means (for example here in Quebec: Office de la Langue Française) typically only effect the dialect in its most formal applications.

One of the big ironies of worries about "anglicisms" is how heavily influenced English was by French in the first place.
Presumably even in names. Marlowe probably comes from Marleau, Pettibone from petit bon, etc. Ah, that 1054 event!

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05-21-2012, 06:49 PM
  #30
Alexdaman
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Montrealers speak generally international french with a quebec accent, rest of Quebec is very much different from region to region. There's really no need for learning a Quebec accent or even a French one, so I'd suggest learning international french, which is also the pronunciation used in every american dubbed movies and unlike crappy english dubbed the french dubs are pretty accurate and as enjoyable as much as watching the original english versions, although I haven't watched a french dub since I'm 10 years old I'm pretty sure it's still as good.

My guess is that many US high school will offer french programs but the best is to learn when being the youngest as possible so private lessons would be the way to go. You yourselves as parents could also join in and visit quebec and try to practice it as a way to really get a grip of the language.

But know that french grammer and structure is much more complex than most european languages since it's a deviant of latin and made in a such a way that only few very educated nobles at the time could be able to read it, made to be somewhat of a noble language and even someone like me who spent so many years in school I would not be able to recall all of the verb variations that exist from different verbs. Basically it's a hard languages to read and write but vocally it's pretty close to english since english is made of a lot of french/latin words.

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05-21-2012, 07:03 PM
  #31
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I agree with the people saying to just take regular French. I have just finished my 4th semester of French, and I will admit I haven't always worked so hard, but I have a decent understanding of it for only have taken 4 semesters, levels 101-204. I can't really decipher things verbally that well, which is probably because our professors always helped us along by using their hands to try to make what they were talking about obvious. I can usually read things pretty well and I can also write reasonably well for a student of such short time.

I am trying to get into the Rosetta Stones now though, so hopefully that helps even more.

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05-21-2012, 11:01 PM
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Basically it's a hard languages to read and write but vocally it's pretty close to english since english is made of a lot of french/latin words.
I actually disagree completely. I find reading and writing French much easier than speaking, but that is just me. Pronouncing French words is tough coming from an anglo background. I have actually had a much easier time speaking Spanish and even Portuguese than French, although I will admit I have given the former more effort.

I dont think any of the Romance languages are even close to English phonetically.

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05-22-2012, 09:10 AM
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I actually disagree completely. I find reading and writing French much easier than speaking, but that is just me. Pronouncing French words is tough coming from an anglo background. I have actually had a much easier time speaking Spanish and even Portuguese than French, although I will admit I have given the former more effort.

I dont think any of the Romance languages are even close to English phonetically.
English is the most 'user-friendly' of all languages and is very adaptative, whereas French is stuck in a world of fine pointing, structuring and exceptions (damn exceptions), which unless you are used to it, will demand more brain activity to be written properly and is why writing it is easier than speaking it, because you can take your time, and that makes it a lot less user-friendly than a lot of other languages which are better adapted to speach, which is something my French brethren have a hard time admitting and accepting, especially vs English. Like I often say, English is a vocal/communications language, whereas French is a written/analytical language.

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05-22-2012, 10:21 AM
  #34
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I agree with the people saying to just take regular French. I have just finished my 4th semester of French, and I will admit I haven't always worked so hard, but I have a decent understanding of it for only have taken 4 semesters, levels 101-204. I can't really decipher things verbally that well, which is probably because our professors always helped us along by using their hands to try to make what they were talking about obvious. I can usually read things pretty well and I can also write reasonably well for a student of such short time.

I am trying to get into the Rosetta Stones now though, so hopefully that helps even more.
Can you please tell me a little about it if you know anything. I speak very little French, I could maybe have a 2 minute basic convo. And I saw the Rosette Stone commercial on TV, I checked the website a little, it a bit price, but I wouldn't mind if it actually helps me learn the language, or do you think it might be better to actually take French course?

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05-22-2012, 11:31 AM
  #35
Teufelsdreck
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Originally Posted by buddahsmoka1 View Post
I actually disagree completely. I find reading and writing French much easier than speaking, but that is just me. Pronouncing French words is tough coming from an anglo background. I have actually had a much easier time speaking Spanish and even Portuguese than French, although I will admit I have given the former more effort.

I dont think any of the Romance languages are even close to English phonetically.
I think you're on target on all points. I'd like to point out something about another language, German. The grammar and syntax are very difficult but the pronunciation is very consistent. Even if you don't know the meaning of a word you can pronounce it correctly by following the rules. This makes it easy to be understood by a native German speaker (although nowadays most Germans can speak at least some English).

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05-22-2012, 11:49 AM
  #36
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Originally Posted by habs03 View Post
Can you please tell me a little about it if you know anything. I speak very little French, I could maybe have a 2 minute basic convo. And I saw the Rosette Stone commercial on TV, I checked the website a little, it a bit price, but I wouldn't mind if it actually helps me learn the language, or do you think it might be better to actually take French course?
I mean, I haven't quite begun them yet, and let's say the way I plan on getting them isn't going to be discussed here. Catch my drift?

But I took 4 semesters of low level French so far in college, and I know a bit. Like I said, I can speak okay, I can read well, I can write okay, but I can't understand when other people are speaking very well yet. So take that for what you will. Because out of those four semesters, I honestly could've put fourth a much better effort and done all my homework and not have used Google Translate on things, but I was lazy and I did and I still know more than I honestly thought I would after just four semesters.

That being said, I haven't heard many negative things about the Rosetta Stone software besides the ridiculous price.

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05-22-2012, 12:15 PM
  #37
Chris Nilan
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Originally Posted by Alexdaman View Post
Montrealers speak generally international french with a quebec accent, rest of Quebec is very much different from region to region. There's really no need for learning a Quebec accent or even a French one, so I'd suggest learning international french, which is also the pronunciation used in every american dubbed movies and unlike crappy english dubbed the french dubs are pretty accurate and as enjoyable as much as watching the original english versions, although I haven't watched a french dub since I'm 10 years old I'm pretty sure it's still as good.

My guess is that many US high school will offer french programs but the best is to learn when being the youngest as possible so private lessons would be the way to go. You yourselves as parents could also join in and visit quebec and try to practice it as a way to really get a grip of the language.

But know that french grammer and structure is much more complex than most european languages since it's a deviant of latin and made in a such a way that only few very educated nobles at the time could be able to read it, made to be somewhat of a noble language and even someone like me who spent so many years in school I would not be able to recall all of the verb variations that exist from different verbs. Basically it's a hard languages to read and write but vocally it's pretty close to english since english is made of a lot of french/latin words.
And this doesn't even take into account the hierarchy of accents, much like the hierarchy that exists in, say, Britain. For example, my Southwestern Ontario accent (and before anyone says that's impossible I invite you to look at a map and note place names like Pointe aux Roches, Paincourt, Puce, St. Philippe and some anglicized ones like River Canard, Belle River, Peche Island, Point Pelee) accent will get me responses ranging from completely ignored in Montreal, to nasty streams of insults from snobs in Ottawa (is that redundant?), to smiles and welcoming comments from people in Quebec City.

A big give away on any accent or dialect and its relative status on the food chain is trilling of the "r," and specifically whether it's a uvular trill or an alveolar trill. I shamefully admit to having put away the alveolar trill and learned the uvular trill so I can pass it to my children, whom I fear will end up sounding more like Stephen Harper than like me, along with taking steps to "sanitize" my accent and rid my vocabulary of archaic forms and expressions that reveal the former isolation of our community. Sigh.

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