History and cultural relations - French Canadians
I am half French Canadian Half English Canadian. My first language is English. But I spent most of my grade school in a French Catholic school. At school I was. A brief overview of French-English relations in Canada from Conscription Crisis French Canadians did not approve in the idea of conscription as Canada needed troops and the French did not find the need to suopport the.
Others went into exile to Canada or to nearby islands. Those who stayed were persecuted. At the end of the 18th century, more liberal measures granted new lands to those who had stayed, and measures were taken to promote the return of numerous exiled people from Canada and Miquelon.
The number of Acadians rose rapidly, to the point of gaining representation in the Legislative Assembly. French is one of the official languages, with English, of the province of New Brunswick. Apart from Quebecthis is the only other Canadian province that recognizes French as an official language. Approximately one-third of New Brunswickers are francophone,  by far the largest Acadian population in Canada.
This feeling of identity is also present in Louisiana due to the historical relationship with Cajun French. Francophones are, however, in the minority in Moncton.
In these provinces, the percentage of francophones is much smaller than in New Brunswick. In some communities, French is an endangered language. Origins of the dialect[ edit ] Linguists do not agree about the origin of Acadian French. The dialect contains, among other features, the alveolar r and the pronunciation of the final syllable in the plural form of the verb in the third person.
According to Wiesmath some characteristics of Acadian are: From a syntactic point of view, a major feature is the use of je both for the first person singular and for the third plural; the same phenomenon takes place with i for the third persons.
Acadian still differentiates the vous form from the tu form. However, because of contact with francophones from other parts of Canada, the distinctive characteristics of Acadian French have been progressively weakened. Ontario[ edit ] Although French is the native language of just over half a million Canadians in Ontariofrancophone Ontarians represent only 4. They are concentrated primarily in the Eastern Ontario and Northeastern Ontario regions, near the border with Quebecalthough they are also present in smaller numbers throughout the province.
Forty percent of Franco-Ontarians no longer speak the language at home.
However, Ottawa is the city which counts the biggest number of Franco-Ontarians. The Franco-Ontarians are originally from a first wave of immigration from Francefrom a second wave from Quebec. The province has no official language defined in law, although it is a largely English-speaking province.
Ontario law requires that the provincial Legislative Assembly operate in both English and French individuals can speak in the Assembly in the official language of their choiceand requires that all provincial statutes and bills be made available in both English and French. Furthermore, under the French Language Services Actindividuals are entitled to communicate with the head or central office of any provincial government department or agency in French, as well as to receive all government services in French in 25 designated areas in the province, selected according to minority population criteria.
In the aftermath of the rebellions, the Durham Report and the Act of Union of proclaimed Februarywhich united Upper and Lower Canada in the Province of Canada and placed French Canadian society firmly under the control of an anglophone-controlled assembly and executive councils, the francophone professional middle class divided into 2 groups. One group, under the leadership of L. Parentpursued a strategy of maximizing the autonomy of French Canada's cultural, social and religious institutions, hoping thereby to undermine the assimilationist intentions of Lord Durham and the British colonial officials.
In order to achieve their goal they co-operated with Upper Canadian reformers in the struggle for and achievement of responsible government in The second group, comprising remnants of the Parti patriote and a younger generation of nationalists in the Institut canadien and the Parti rougerejected the Act of Union and campaigned for its repeal. The Conservative Party, with the full support of a reinvigorated Catholic Church, sought to enhance the autonomy of French Canada's cultural, social and religious institutions within the Union of the Canadas.
Macdonaldin the pursuit of economic development through the building of railways and the expansion of trade with the US and Great Britain. The deadlock was broken when all members of the Assembly, except those belonging to the rouge movement, agreed to pursue the implementation of a federal system for Upper and Lower Canada or for all the British North American colonies.
Members of the rouge movement objected to the new constitution because, they claimed, it was too centralist and did not guarantee the survival of the francophone community. A slight majority of francophones, convinced by the Conservative Party and a very cautious Catholic Church that the new constitution did offer a significant degree of autonomy to the francophone nationality, supported the federation of 3 British North American colonies into a federation of 4 provinces with the central parliamentary institutions to be located in Ottawa.
The History of French English Relations in Canada timeline | Timetoast timelines
During the federal and provincial elections, the Conservative Party gained 45 of the 65 seats, a clear demonstration of the general support for the new constitutional arrangement.
The modernization of the agricultural sector as well as the industrialization of the province in the last quarter of the century helped the francophone community pursue and achieve some of its cultural, social and political aspirations.
Second, there was the increasingly difficult plight of the francophone minorities outside the province in New Brunswick, the North-West Territories and Ontario. Discrimination and threats to their continued survival were evidenced by the abolition of the informal separate schools used by New Brunswick's Acadians; the Red River Rebellion of and the North-West Rebellion of which both English- and French-speaking central Canadians interpreted as a struggle between French Catholics and English Protestants over who would determine the character of the West ; the decision of the Manitoba Liberal government to abolish funding for Catholic schools recognized under the Manitoba Act of see Manitoba Schools Question ; the curtailment of public funding for separate schools in the Act creating the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan; and, finally, Ontario's Regulation XVII, which undermined an informal system of bilingual separate schools by outlawing the use of French as a language of instruction until the late s see Ontario Schools Question.
In fact, many French Canadians felt their society was being forced to choose between provincial rights and minority rights, a choice that was simply not acceptable because provincial autonomy was considered the very root of the survival of the francophone nationality in Canada. In order to resolve this dilemma, a number of prominent francophones, led by Judge T. Loranger and the journalist and politician Henri Bourassabegan to supplement the "compact of provinces" theory with a "compact of nationalities" theory.
Francophone-Anglophone Relations | The Canadian Encyclopedia
It was argued that the concept of 2 nations, or 2 founding peoples, constituted the heart of Confederation. Consequently, francophone leaders responded to the minority-rights crises by appealing to the federal government to enforce the Constitution; only the full acceptance of a bilingual and bicultural country could prevent renewed and politically divisive attacks on francophone minorities.
Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier attempted to apply the "2-nation" concept in his agreement with Premier Thomas Greenway of Manitoba.The Canadian Francophone Experience
The agreement, which provided some restitution for Manitoba's rural Catholics, was abolished in by the Liberal government of T. There was even less agreement between French- and English-speaking Canadians over foreign policy, especially the issue of Canada's role in the British Empire. From toFrench Canadian and British Canadian nationalists clashed repeatedly. French Canadian nationalists, led by Henri Bourassa, objected vociferously to Canada's increased participation in imperial schemes, whether economic, political or especially military.
Bourassa strongly opposed the participation of Canadian troops in the South African War on the grounds that all forms of imperialism were immoral and that the incident would serve as a precedent for future participation in other British imperial wars.
Laurier tried to hold the moderates of both communities together by avoiding commitments and by creating, ina Canadian navy that could be put at the disposal of the Royal Navy in times of war, but this strategy merely aroused the ire of the nationalists on both sides and contributed to Laurier's downfall in the election. The inevitable clash between the 2 sides reached its climax in the conscription crisis and was symbolized by the formation of Borden's Union government that same year.
The conscription issue divided the political parties along ethnic lines, as the vast majority of English-speaking MPs supported conscription and the Union government, while all French Canadian MPs were re-elected as anticonscriptionist Liberals. The impact of this crisis on anglophone-francophone relations was devastating, especially for the intellectual and political elites of both communities. For the federal Conservative Party it proved a long-term disaster.
French Canada's nationalists turned inward, away from Bourassa's laudable goal of achieving a bilingual and bicultural country. They began to think seriously about the growing economic inferiority of French Canadians as individuals and as a collectivity. The French Canadian professional and commercial middle classes encountered increased competition from English Canadian and American conglomerates. On occasion, out of desperation, Groulx and his colleagues dreamed of an independent, traditional and rural French Canadian nation.
With the Great Depressionthe serious economic disadvantages of French Canadians as a community and as individuals were made clear to the public.
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- French Canadians - History and Cultural Relations
Some middle-class French Canadians reacted by advocating socioeconomic and political reforms, eg, the creation of co-operatives, state support for francophone entrepreneurs, nationalization of the anglophone hydroelectric companies, regulation of large corporations and "buy-French-Canadian-made-products" campaigns. The Conservative Nationalism of the Union Nationale The Union Nationale under Maurice Duplessis - made up of old-line Conservatives, disenchanted Liberals and traditional nationalists - took advantage of the nationalist reawakening created by the Depression to defeat the Liberal Party in Despite English-speaking Canadians' fears, Duplessis, who was essentially a constitutional nationalist, refused to proceed with the economic nationalist reforms championed by the nationalists inside and outside of the party.
His party was defeated in the provincial election, which he chose to contest on the use of conscription, by the direct intervention of the Liberal Party of Mackenzie King and Ernest LapointeKing's French Canadian lieutenant.
The History of French English Relations in Canada
Lapointe and his francophone colleagues had threatened to resign and allow the conscriptionist Conservative Party to take over the federal reins if French Canadians refused to turf out the troublesome Duplessis. In return for a promise of no conscription for overseas service, French Canadians reluctantly agreed to Canadian participation in WWII. With the fall of France inthe demand for conscription from parts of English-speaking Canada intensified.
Prime Minister King hoped to undermine the conscriptionist movement, especially its Tory leader, Arthur Meighenby holding a plebiscite in which all Canadians would be asked to relieve the federal government of its pledge of no conscription for overseas service. Haunted once again by the threat of conscription, various French Canadian nationalist movements came together in the League for the Defence of Canada to campaign vigorously and successfully for a No vote in the April plebiscite.
Canada was again divided between 2 linguistic and cultural communities. King heeded the message and declared that there would be "conscription if necessary, but not necessarily conscription. In the election, French Canadians helped re-elect the Liberal government.
Anglophone-francophone relations had weathered both the Depression and the war. Both communities had continued to play by the rules established inwhile nevertheless continuing to challenge the interpretation of those rules, especially in the areas of taxation and social policy. Between and this situation changed dramatically as a result of several factors. The most important political factor was Ottawa's postwar decision which was supported by a new generation of English Canadian nationalists to forge ahead with the creation of a centralized welfare state.
Ottawa's predominantly anglophone politicians and bureaucrats argued that the federal government needed full control over all forms of direct taxation to ensure stable economic development and to defray the cost of programs such as employment insurancefamily allowancesold-age pensionsand hospital and medical-insurance schemes.
While many provinces rejected Ottawa's proposed new federalism, they were slow to make counter-proposals. Indeed, polls demonstrated that the voters wanted these new programmes.
For a younger generation of French Canadian nationalists Duplessis's defensive strategy was insufficient. Only an active nationalist state could help create an appropriate environment for the emergence of a strong francophone industrial and financial bourgeoisie. The socioeconomic changes in Canada that were caused by growing industrialization and urbanization and the influx into Canada of thousands of immigrants who spoke neither English nor French created new strains on French Canadian society.
At the heart of the tension lay the realization by francophones that the Catholic Church and the rural way of life could no longer serve as bulwarks against assimilation. They realized that their economic and social future was urban and industrial.