Interregional Migration and the Emergence of Dialect Zones in Quebec

Wim Remysen (Université de Sherbrooke)

Interregional migration in Quebec has had a significant impact on regional variations in how French is spoken in the province. My study aims to look more closely at how the history of settlement in Quebec (the development of networks, movement between regions, the urbanization of the population, the development of urban centres) may have fostered regional differences in Quebec French. I am especially interested in the pivotal period covering the second half of the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth century, which saw the settled area of the St. Lawrence Valley progressively expand into the Laurentian and Appalachian plateaus. Drawing on methods used in historical dialectology, the study focuses on analyzing dialectical data collected in the early twentieth century by the Société du parler français au Canada through a correspondence survey.