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FLAS Fellow Studies French & Québec-Specific Language Laws in Québec

Beth St Claire

October 31, 2015

Time can seem both short and a long when you participate in full French Immersion. You will be surprised, too, to hear how your voice remains your own yet sounds distinctly different in French.

Thanks to a FLAS Fellowship I voyaged to Québec City this summer to participate in such a linguistic adventure. “Un grand défi,” to be sure. I participated in discussions of Québécois culture, politics, Catholic influence, and humor. I bettered my practical skills such as sending a letter to a landlord, and worked with the abstract, such as composing French puns.

Of course, no immersion experience is complete without a proper homestay. My famille Québécoise helped me with pronunciation and Québécois slang as we dined practically every night on traditional Québécois dishes. I also learned a culinary secret to keeping a pot roast from ever drying out, which I have promised never to divulge!

What a wonderful opportunity to spend summertime in pleasantly humid Québec City and encounter its flowering public gardens and cobblestone streets.

And how fortunate I am to have seen my ability to communicate and use French greatly improve as this skill is something I will use for the rest of my life.

Beth became interested in the Distinct Society that is Québec as her studies in francophone grew. She was fortunate to spend a semester abroad in Québec City and participate in in-depth studies of both the Politics and Government of the Province of Québec as well as the Nation of Canada. She’s excited to expand this scholarship into comparative Canadian Law. She hopes to focus on the Canadian Constitution, Canadian Commercial Law and Québec-Specific Language Laws.

The Canadian Studies Center is a recipient of a U.S. Department of Education Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships program grant. The grant provides allocations of academic year and summer fellowships to assist meritorious graduate students undergoing training in modern foreign languages and Canadian Studies.