What do Guardian readers think of Canada? - Macleans.ca

What do Guardian readers think of Canada?

Advice column asks readers to ponder job opportunities in two Canadian cities


Want to know what the rest of the world really thinks of us? The Private Lives advice column in today’s Guardian features a reader with a dilemma—job offers in two different Canadian cities. The first location is described as a frigid Prairie town, “quite a large place but in the middle of nowhere.” The second, a ville in more “cosmopolitan and cool” Quebec, but the reader has heard that the people can be “very insular and frosty.” The Guardian’s commenters are proving more than ready to lend a hand however, burning up the website with frank appraisals of Canada’s charms. Let’s just say that most of them won’t be featured in any upcoming tourism ads.

The Guardian

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What do Guardian readers think of Canada?

  1. The comments are actually quite flattering of Canada FWIW

  2. Nobody cares what Pom's think…least of all Guardian readers…

    • Got up on the wrong side of the bed, did we? If you can't find anything nice to say (or at least intelligent)…

  3. What are you smoking? The comments are quite flattering – even those that warn them about the cold winters mention that if the posters 'make like Canadians' and learn to love winter sports they'll do just fine.

    • I think we have different definitions of flattery… This one would be downright insulting if it weren't true ;-)

  4. What would anybody think of this pornographic phony bilingual pandering place. Well read Reed Scowen, with ears open.

  5. Our nephew worked in England for a while, but came back to Manitoba for Christman. He said in the winter in England, he was always cold (that dampness), but in Canada even -25 he was always warm.

  6. Hoser is right! As would anybody be who used their Brain. New Brunswick is finished because of forced french. A missive went out to libraries in English NB towns that they were to answer the phone with ALLO! I expect the spineless English will, and then think they bilingual! lol__Quote__Seeing the point__Not everyone – even among the Swiss – wants to learn another language. __“If people don't want to learn, they don't learn,” said Cattacin. “It's completely stupid to have policies that say you have to know these languages. What we have to do in Switzerland is to bring people together in projects and give them the possibility to learn together by doing something together.”__While the numerous research projects will help form a basis on which new policies can be developed, no-one pretends that they have reached definitive conclusions.__“The linguistic needs and ideologies of society are constantly changing, and with them so is language itself,” said Haas in his presentation of the final report. ____“Investigating language and linguistic relationships is a long term project, and its results are provisional.”__Julia Slater, swissinfo.ch____

    • Promoting bilingualism in Canada is a bit of a different issue. Widespread bilingualism would be beneficial from a national unity perspective. Moreover, the fact that some Canadians cannot live comfortably in part of their own country is an obstacle to labour mobility. The problem is that our general approach is so ineffective.

      We start teaching French too late (grade 4), and then stop at grade 9 (at least in Ontario). Why not start very early, when children are better at picking up languages, and too young to be resentful about the imposition? French instruction, similarly, is lousy. We teach students to memorize formal grammatical structures with stupid mnemonics like Madame Vandertramp, instead of conversational French. I'm also not sure how we can get around the problem that English Canadians have little reason to use French in their daily lives, unless they work in the civil service (Ottawa's geographic location between Ontario and Quebec is not the only reason it is the best example of working bilingualism outside of New Brunswicl).

      • Obviously, there is no working bilingualism in NB, where they were starting french in grade 1. A luxury system set up for the Quebec french trying to encourage them to come here because there are few bilinguals here, to hire for the forced bilingual jobs. Its getting to be a riot! Obviously because in 45 years of this disaster New Brunswick is LAST in every field. Except in the exodus of their English to Alberta, which is just fine with the English. The many I talk to LOVE traveling out, making good money and coming home for the winter. A little vacation! lol. My 15 year old granson has 2000 in the bank from 3 months and his father, a contractor proxy, has 300,000 in the bank. Enough to do till May 2011. Les cream acsenda to la houter! Tout la temp! lol
        There will never be a reason for anyone to learn french. Once the billions around the World stop trying to support it its allume out!

  7. I am from Quebec City and I did move to Britain two years ago, so this study case is quite interesting for me. I learn that migrating to a new country (even if you speak the language) would represent a huge challenge if you don't make necessary efforts to understand obvious and subtle social and cultural differences.

    If someone from Britain prepare itself to move to Quebec and make the right efforts, knowing that language could be the biggest adjustement, then it might be a much more enjoyable experience than going to the Prairies unprepared assuming that Canada and England are the same. The more you know in advance potential pitfalls the better it is. How many bad stories we heard in Quebec about French Canadians going to live in France (and vice versa) unprepared counting only on the knowledge of French as the base of integration.

    Migrating to a new country is difficult, learning a new language is difficult too. But the reward is great, you learn more about yourself, and you learn more about the world we live in.

    I wish the best for those soon-to-be Canadian residents…

  8. Well west is where everybody is going. Including thousands of Quebec's immigrant allophones, and the remaining English. Don't expect many sensible immigrants.