1707932372 Is Francois Legault cool

Is Francois Legault “cool”?

Last Thursday, François Legault was mocked for saying in the National Assembly: “Unfortunately there are young people who think so.” Cool Saying words in English or speaking to each other in English.”

• Also read: [VIDÉO] François Legault regrets that young people “think it’s cool to say words in English”

Of course, it was ironic that he used an English word to defend the promotion of French. But why criticize him for speaking the way 99% of Quebecers speak?

I listen to a lot of Quebec series and am amazed at the amount of anglicisms, English expressions, words or complete sentences in English that they contain.

Those who make fun of the Prime Minister find nothing wrong with seeing our actors recite lines that no one in the rest of the French-speaking world would understand?

Is Francois Legault cool

Archive photo, Stevens LeBlanc


Every time someone catches me using an English word and reproaches me: “You denounce anglicisms, but you also say funny and cool,” I respond with my salty analogy. A little salt sprinkled here and there on a dish enhances the flavor. Tipping over the entire salt shaker is disgusting. A word of English every now and then, that's not the problem. Monolingualism in companies, the constant Franglais of young people who are unable to form more than 50% of a sentence in their native language, that is a problem.

In the Quebec series I listen to these days, I hear phrases like “save time to balance the till”, based on “save” in English and “balance” in English.

I also hear a lot of “That's it!, let's go!, come on!, we have a deal, good job!”.

I'm just asking the question, I don't have an answer: Should series writers write the way we speak, or write better than we speak?

  • Listen to the Durocher-Dutrizac meeting with Sophie Durocher QUB radio :

For several years now we have been experiencing a restructuring of our series: for example, the characters no longer smoke because we believe that this sets a bad example for the viewers. But in “real life” it is full of people who smoke. We are told that we need more minorities and diversity on the air to reflect reality. With the same logic, should the dialogues reflect the “reality” of Quebec in 2024, which is that we all sprinkle a little English “salt” in our sentences?

Of course we don't want a character from Hochelaga-Maisonneuve to speak like a Parisian Titi, with “du coup” and “à donf”. But is it normal that sometimes we hear dialogues like: Character 1: Let's go! Character 2: Come on!, while the scene takes place in the Magdalen Islands?


Jacques Duval, the record gravedigger and motoring columnist, died last week. Here was a man who spoke the French language with class. In 2004, the OQLF awarded him the Mérite du français award for the quality of the language used in his work. Then, in 2011, he received the prestigious Georges Émile Lapalme Prize, “awarded to a person who, throughout his or her career, has made an exceptional contribution to the quality and influence of the French language spoken or written in Quebec.”

In a world full of crankshafts, mufflers and clutches, Mr. Duval had introduced and popularized a French vocabulary. After making so much progress, are we taking a step backwards? Should we slow down English?