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It must be “switched” to French

It must be “switched” to French

This week, as we celebrate International Francophonie Day, it is important to recognize and promote the French language. Too often, we forget how much our common language contributes to Quebec's unique character.

I know very well the fragility of the French language. I spent my entire childhood in the United States, in New Hampshire. My father was Quebecois, my mother French-American. In my neighborhood in Manchester, I've seen French diminish over time. A few years ago, I decided to move to Montreal to live in a French-speaking environment.

I know a lot of Americans who come here to learn French. They love Quebec's culture, lifestyle and progressive society. Even if their French isn't perfect, they make an effort to speak and understand our language. But to their great frustration, many Quebecers sometimes decide to speak to them in English.

Heritage and cultural integrity

Montreal is one of the largest French-speaking cities in the world, with a rich cultural heritage closely linked to the French language. Its people, culture and progressive society often combine to add a unique flavor to its cultural fabric.

This is why it is important for Quebecers and Montrealers to continue speaking French to English speakers who are trying to learn this language. Even if the temptation is great to switch to English, to do so Converts As we say here, there are compelling reasons to continue and persevere in speaking French, even to those with a lovely English accent from south of the border.

Promoting the French language goes beyond linguistic identity; This is about protecting the heritage and cultural integrity of Montreal and Quebec. The French language is deeply rooted in our history and identity, and preserving it is essential to maintaining uniqueness.

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Educated people

Giving priority to French over English in communicating with learners fosters a conducive environment for people trying to master the language. Learning a new language can be difficult, and it is widely known that language immersion is one of the most effective ways to acquire a language. By providing learners the opportunity to practice French in real-life situations, Montrealers play a crucial role in facilitating language development and mastery.

Switching to English may inadvertently hinder their progress by depriving them of valuable training opportunities. Learners benefit greatly from exposure to real conversations and contexts where they can practice their language skills.

In addition, adopting French as the first language of communication enhances integration and social cohesion within society. Language is not only a means of communication, but also a means of cultural exchange and understanding.

In addition, mastery of the French language opens doors to employment, education and social integration within the French-speaking community. By valuing and enhancing French language skills, Quebeckers enable individuals to participate fully in the social, economic and cultural life of their environment.

On a personal level, I have personally benefited from the patience and encouragement of many of my friends in Quebec who have helped me strengthen and reconnect with my language, the language of my heart, and the language of my parents.

Let us continue to help and encourage those who come here, recognizing the uniqueness and beauty of the French language.

remy francoeur, French-American resident in Montreal for several years, consultant in public relations, government relations and crisis management