26 August 2011

Three leaders, three accents

Opinion - The Globe and Mail

Jack Layton was born in Hudson, near Montreal, and studied at McGill, at a time when French immersion classes were non-existent. He learned French mostly on the streets, through personal contact rather than by formal studies. His French is colloquial, and his syntax often faulty. His working-class accent sounds familiar, but it is very different from the mainstream accent that is considered the norm in French Canada – this standard being represented, for instance, by the news anchors of Société Radio-Canada.

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