Puzzling out Quebecois from TV5

TV5 is such a fun way to learn French! A complete novice can get the melody from listening to the language in the background. Intermediate students can follow talk-shows, cartoons, films, soap operas and cultural shows with or without subtitles. And advanced students and French teachers trained in France can discover historical and cultural depth and French as it is spoken in Quebec. Although the French tend to look down on the Quebecers, I figure it’s the equivalent of the British looking down on American English.

Having been educated in Parisian French, I am only discovering Québecois now through TV5 and I love its variations from what I learned. Who’s to say which language is better? It’s the one we’re used to. And I’m now getting used to the Québecois of such Canadian series as Un Gars une fille, Tout sur moi, Aveux and, now, Unité 9. (TV5 seems to broadcast one at a time.)

I feel like an archeologist searching a culture for clues to its language. I’d love to hear information from people out there rather than books or a list of rules. Can anyone in cyberspace tell me how questions are formed in Québecois? All I can distinguish is an added “-tu” after the verb form. Like “C’est-tu normal?” means ‘Is that normal?’ I wondered what the speakers would do with questions to a familiar person, one they address as “tu,” but that forms seems the same, a “tu” after the conjugated verb.

Another mysterious phenomenon: they tend to insert “ça” after the conjugated verbs: “J’aimerais ça discuter de la situation… ” Can someone explain that?

All the language observations for this post comes from today’s second 40-minute episode of Unité 9!

This entry was posted in Cultural Perspectives, French culture, French versus English, Language Tips, Reasons to learn French, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Puzzling out Quebecois from TV5

  1. caramelixoid says:

    Nous sommes tous de la même grande famille…. oui le temps et la séparation nous ont fait évoluer différemment, nous ne sommes peut-être plus frères et soeurs ….. nous sommes plutot cousins car nous avons evolués de facon différente…. mais nous avons toujours ce lien qui nous relie et cette belle langue qui est la notre.


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