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-   -   Controversial Idea: The US as (Anglo-)Canada's Mother Country? (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum//showthread.php?t=240642)

Acajack Oct 16, 2019 8:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by urbandreamer (Post 8718813)
Nope doesn't make me uncomfortable: I'm half American with roots going back to the 1600s. However I mostly listen to British & European music (baroque, trance, hiphop), read English car magazines, look at UK and European architectural forums on SSC, follow UK and NI politics. I didn't grow up watching TV so American pop culture references are meaningless to me; I rarely watch Hollywood movies; I recently signed up for Amazon Prime Videos to watch the Grand Tour (English show) vs my gf who watches American trash on Netflix. I mostly read English, Scottish and Irish writers and poets.

A good rule of thumb though is always to never take for granted that you (or your entourage) is representative of wider society.

OldDartmouthMark Oct 16, 2019 9:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 8719047)
I did not travel to the U.S. with my family until I was well past the age of 10. As i was an early bloomer with lots of societal awareness even as a very young teen I was very observant already.

As I mentioned in another post I'd had many years of exposure to U.S. culture at that point so arriving in the U.S. was kind of like stepping into the TV set.

My kids have had the experience of foreign travel for as long as they can remember so the U.S. and other foreign countries have just been "as they are" for them and there weren't really any epiphany or eureka moments for them when they visited. Given their age back then and the absence of preconceived notions and expectations.

My first actual visits to the US were when I was a little younger, perhaps 5 or 6 years old, but only to Maine for family vacations. Even still, small differences like signage, brands and pricing were a big deal to me - especially toys and Macdonalds - they had better toys and we didn't have Macdonalds until much later. The typical Maine accent wasn't a surprise as I had heard local Maine personalities like Dick Stacey and Eddie Driscoll on TV.

Later on into adulthood, my first visits to big, iconic American cities were somewhat surreal - all these buildings and streets that I had seen in movies and television for years were actually there in front of me. It was weird - like an old friend that I had known for years but never actually met. Anyhow, it occurred to me that I really should not be so familiar with American locations but I had just absorbed it all over the years as though by osmosis.

As a side note, due to the little diddies like Schoolhouse Rock that they played regularly during Saturday morning cartoons, I could recite the first part of the American Constitution in song... what a mind blower that is, especially considering that most Americans probably have a hard time understanding where Toronto is, and have no idea who our Prime Minister is, other than that 'attractive' guy that Melania was eyeing up on social media... :haha:

Andy6 Oct 16, 2019 9:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 8719095)
Only institutionally, and even so really if we're talking about Quebec institutionally it's kind of a Frankenstein's monster of UK, US, (Anglo-)Canadian, French, other European and homegrown structures.

Socio-culturally even though they are present I'd agree, there is no way Scottish, Irish or US influences outstrip French-derived ones.

If you asked real French people where, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being France and 10 being the USA, they thought Quebec and its culture stood, I wonder what they’d typically say.

Bcasey25raptor Oct 16, 2019 9:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LakeLocker (Post 8718476)
You're talking about something that largely becomes irrelevant a few generations after it occurs. We can't predict future immigration patterns and there is no reason to think these trends will occur. And again you're playing with averages in a way that makes no sense. Countries are not monolithic. People are repeatedly trying to skirt the fact there is more difference between Minnesota and California than there is between Minnesota and east of Ottawa.

I live in London and day to day I meet far more Latinos than any other group of people, when I lived in Toronto I knew tonnes of Italians and Germans, and when I am in BC it is quite obviously cascadia.

except they don't, there is a deal of assimilation yes but for the most part someones roots stick with them and greatly colour the way they see the world.

as for latino and black influences? In the us they are HUGE influences. The uS has far more cultural influences from black and latino cultures than Canada does which skews the US quite a degree differently. In contrast first nations peoples and cultures are far more dominant here in Canada.

as for Vancouver being cascadia? I don't see it, other than the environment of the area, BC is quite a degree different from washington state. Vancouver is demographically vastly different from seattle due to the huge influence of asian populations here that are lacking in seattle.

BC is also more conservative than washington state is and in BC urbanization and urban planning is far more influences by asia then seattle is.

The uS side of the pacific northwest does have a lot of similarities with us but it's way overaggerated mainly by a subsect of young white people that either used to believe in the cascadia movement or still do.

I notice a difference between BC and washington even when only visiting bellingham.

In General Canada is a more conservative and reserved country then the united states is.

Acajack Oct 16, 2019 9:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy6 (Post 8719185)
If you asked real French people where, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being France and 10 being the USA, they thought Quebec and its culture stood, I wonder what they’d typically say.

Does it matter?

(Note that I said French-derived, not French.)

kwoldtimer Oct 16, 2019 10:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy6 (Post 8719185)
If you asked real French people where, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being France and 10 being the USA, they thought Quebec and its culture stood, I wonder what they’d typically say.

That they have no idea? ;)

CityTech Oct 16, 2019 10:55 PM

Isn't it a common thing in France to see Quebec as the French version of the US? (ie. Thinking of it as America, but in French?).

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 12:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CityTech (Post 8719292)
Isn't it a common thing in France to see Quebec as the French version of the US? (ie. Thinking of it as America, but in French?).

For those who know Quebec a bit, "what the US might look like had it been French" is a fairly common view.

For others who know little about us, it ranges from a slice of quasi-authentic France in America, to something no more French than Louisiana.

Capsicum Oct 17, 2019 1:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 8719408)
For those who know Quebec a bit, "what the US might look like had it been French" is a fairly common view.

For others who know little about us, it ranges from a slice of quasi-authentic France in America, to something no more French than Louisiana.

Surely, "no more French than Louisiana" must be quite the understatement for someone who actually speaks French fluently and desires to converse in it given how little power French has in most parts of Louisiana and given that you can travel around it and not even encounter French spoken to you at all as a tourist unless you go out and seek it in far-flung places, and how (relatively) strong French is in Quebec in that if you were a monolingual English speaker, you still couldn't avoid it even if you tried.

Unless you were in an Anglo enclave in say Montreal, like being a McGill student or something, maybe you'd think Montreal was no more French than New Orleans, but even then, I'd imagine you'd notice that around you, there are people who are conversing with others in French on the street, all around you and in daily life in a way you would rarely see in Louisiana unless you went to a really small town and even then, the assumption would not be that you address strangers/tourists you don't know with "bonjour-hi"!

Capsicum Oct 17, 2019 1:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bcasey25raptor (Post 8719186)

as for latino and black influences? In the us they are HUGE influences. The uS has far more cultural influences from black and latino cultures than Canada does which skews the US quite a degree differently. In contrast first nations peoples and cultures are far more dominant here in Canada.

How strong do you think these minority influences are in non-urban, non-diverse, and non-cosmopolitan places (well for the indigenous influence, it's different as they are a native minority pre-dating European settlement) relatively in either country?

Like for instance, is a white suburbanite or "middle America" type person in say Iowa who never grew up around minorities more influenced by Hispanic and Black culture than a small town Canuck from the prairies or maritimes would be influenced by First Nations culture (or even if you would have it, Asian culture, if this person was from small town BC, say, far away from Vancouver or any urban area).

Aside from being more aware of their presence from media coverage etc., what elements of food, dress, diet, culture etc. are prominently more "black" or Hispanic" about white Americans vs. white Canadians, and what elements of say, First Nations or "Asian" culture does the average white Canadian have more than the average white American?

kwoldtimer Oct 17, 2019 2:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capsicum (Post 8719478)
Surely, "no more French than Louisiana" must be quite the understatement for someone who actually speaks French fluently and desires to converse in it given how little power French has in most parts of Louisiana and given that you can travel around it and not even encounter French spoken to you at all as a tourist unless you go out and seek it in far-flung places, and how (relatively) strong French is in Quebec in that if you were a monolingual English speaker, you still couldn't avoid it even if you tried.

Unless you were in an Anglo enclave in say Montreal, like being a McGill student or something, maybe you'd think Montreal was no more French than New Orleans, but even then, I'd imagine you'd notice that around you, there are people who are conversing with others in French on the street, all around you and in daily life in a way you would rarely see in Louisiana unless you went to a really small town and even then, the assumption would not be that you address strangers/tourists you don't know with "bonjour-hi"!

One would assume that French people who know little about Quebec have not spent much time wandering the streets of Montreal.

Capsicum Oct 17, 2019 3:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kwoldtimer (Post 8719511)
One would assume that French people who know little about Quebec have not spent much time wandering the streets of Montreal.

Whoops, kind of misread Acajack's description of those in France who have little experience with Quebec.

But in any case, I'd still be surprised that a French person in France would expect the most French part of Canada to be no more French than the most French part of the US, given that most people in France I presume would be aware that Canada at least is officially bilingual and supports/revived the French language much more than its US counterparts (Louisiana and whatever parts of New England or the Midwest once had more French influence).

I would still be rather surprised if a French person really thought that Canada's most French part was no more French that the US in general within the broader North American context, as I presume most French people are aware, if they know Canada and the Quebec situation at all, that one thing that makes it distinctive is that the Francophone influence hasn't gone away, relative to the rest of Anglo North America.

That makes me wonder, how many people in France are unaware of the French language revival post 1960s, and think that Montreal now is no more French than Toronto or NYC, and still think Anglo dominance over Canada is still the way it was say in the 50s and French has long been assimilated away?

Capsicum Oct 17, 2019 3:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 8717585)

But what if we think of the US as Canada's Mother Country? Or at least as a country that plays the Mother Country role for Canada? (The latter point being a concession to the fact that we may not have come into this relationship in the way that these things normally happen.)

The concept of a "mother country" is an interesting and controversial one. It's interesting to think of a "New World" country as being the mother country for another "New World" country.

Usually, the most commonly brought-up "mother country" scenarios are thought of as an "Old World-New World relationship" with settler colonial offshoots like Britain and the US/Canada/Australia/NZ, or Spain and Latin America etc.

But the idea of an older New World (or let's say post-colonial) country being a "mother country" for a "newer" (post-colonial) New World country is interesting -- like is Australia a "mother country" for NZ (similar to Canada, NZ chose not to join the federation of Australia, while different colonies that became Australia did)?

Or is Malaysia, Britain or China the mother country for Singapore?

Is the US also the mother country for Liberia?

Is Britain or France the mother country for Haiti and Jamaica, because it set up the institutions and set the tone for the culture, even though the people (descendants of African slaves) initially never wanted to be brought there in the first place?

Does the modern state of Israel have its mother country be the Biblical Israel, or do any of the western powers (Britain, the US and other allies) and members of the Jewish diaspora all over the world that agreed to and fought strongly for the modern set-up) that helped create the modern nation state ever deserve to be called "mother country" for it, at least as a post 1948 nation state.

I think "mother country" really opens up a real can of worms.

Not saying that Canada's origins versus the US are gonna be as controversial as say what the creation of modern Israel was like, but the concept of "you wouldn't be here without us, we created you, you're an offshoot of us" does rub people the wrong way. I don't think everyone everywhere the world over has a coherent definition of "mother country".

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 3:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OldDartmouthMark (Post 8719161)
The typical Maine accent wasn't a surprise as I had heard local Maine personalities like Dick Stacey and Eddie Driscoll on TV.

:

Dick Stacey's Country Jamboree! I remember it well. (I spent part of my childhood and youth in the Maritimes, you'll recall.)

Some of the show's main sponsors were from Atlantic Canada even though the show was produced in Maine.

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 3:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OldDartmouthMark (Post 8719161)

As a side note, due to the little diddies like Schoolhouse Rock that they played regularly during Saturday morning cartoons, I could recite the first part of the American Constitution in song... what a mind blower that is, especially considering that most Americans probably have a hard time understanding where Toronto is, and have no idea who our Prime Minister is, other than that 'attractive' guy that Melania was eyeing up on social media... :haha:

Same here. "I'm just a bill yes I'm only a bill, and I'm sitting' here on Capitol Hill..." and "The Great American Melting Pot"...

When I look at some of my old friends' activity on social media, and how irate they can get about Trump and other U.S. issues, I wonder if the fact that we grew up with all this stuff so ubiquitous in our lives didn't subliminally convince a lot of people that U.S. issues are happening on "home turf".

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 3:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capsicum (Post 8719537)
Whoops, kind of misread Acajack's description of those in France who have little experience with Quebec.

But in any case, I'd still be surprised that a French person in France would expect the most French part of Canada to be no more French than the most French part of the US, given that most people in France I presume would be aware that Canada at least is officially bilingual and supports/revived the French language much more than its US counterparts (Louisiana and whatever parts of New England or the Midwest once had more French influence).

I would still be rather surprised if a French person really thought that Canada's most French part was no more French that the US in general within the broader North American context, as I presume most French people are aware, if they know Canada and the Quebec situation at all, that one thing that makes it distinctive is that the Francophone influence hasn't gone away, relative to the rest of Anglo North America.

That makes me wonder, how many people in France are unaware of the French language revival post 1960s, and think that Montreal now is no more French than Toronto or NYC, and still think Anglo dominance over Canada is still the way it was say in the 50s and French has long been assimilated away?

We're definitely seen as stubborn resisters - this image is fairly ubiquitous throughout the francophone world.

The classic image of us being that of the Village Gaulois from the Astérix comic strips, surrounded on all sides by threatening Roman outposts:

http://one360.eu/blog/archives/42068

That said, people are more iffy on the details of how successfully we are resisting.

Which is why for example many European French are often mystified by the fact that many Québécois speak little to no English.

kwoldtimer Oct 17, 2019 4:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 8719910)
We're definitely seen as stubborn resisters - this image is fairly ubiquitous throughout the francophone world.

The classic image of us being that of the Village Gaulois from the Astérix comic strips, surrounded on all sides by threatening Roman outposts:

http://one360.eu/blog/archives/42068

That said, people are more iffy on the details of how successfully we are resisting.

Which is why for example many European French are often mystified by the fact that many Québécois speak little to no English.

People around the world are mystified by the fact. Heck, I'm mystified by the fact. :haha:

I'm reminded of a conversation I had once with a senior South Korean bureaucrat who, on learning that about half the population didn't speak English, scrunched up his face in a way that spoke to his astonishment and asked me "On purpose?".

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 4:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capsicum (Post 8719537)

But in any case, I'd still be surprised that a French person in France would expect the most French part of Canada to be no more French than the most French part of the US, given that most people in France I presume would be aware that Canada at least is officially bilingual and supports/revived the French language much more than its US counterparts (Louisiana and whatever parts of New England or the Midwest once had more French influence).

Perhaps it's more that some have too high expectations for how French Louisiana remains, and too low expectations for how French Quebec still is. So the two perceptions meet at some point and people think they're at least somewhat comparable.

I am not saying it's the majority view but it's something that can be out there. Though perhaps a better choice of words would be "a perception that Quebec is barely more French than Louisiana".

I'd agree that it's surprising given that a Frenchman is about 10000 times more likely to see a Québécois person on their TV set, speaking in French, than he is someone from Louisiana. Just about the only Cajun who has any star power in France and who speaks French is Zachary Richard. Whereas there are oodles of Québécois about whom you could say the same.

I can't think of any Louisiana authors who would be guests on French literary programs, talking about books they've written in French.

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 4:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kwoldtimer (Post 8719919)
People around the world are mystified by the fact. Heck, I'm mystified by the fact. :haha:
".

If anything, it's useful for keeping you guys honest and from getting too big for your britches!

Acajack Oct 17, 2019 4:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capsicum (Post 8719547)
The concept of a "mother country" is an interesting and controversial one. It's interesting to think of a "New World" country as being the mother country for another "New World" country.

Usually, the most commonly brought-up "mother country" scenarios are thought of as an "Old World-New World relationship" with settler colonial offshoots like Britain and the US/Canada/Australia/NZ, or Spain and Latin America etc.

But the idea of an older New World (or let's say post-colonial) country being a "mother country" for a "newer" (post-colonial) New World country is interesting -- like is Australia a "mother country" for NZ (similar to Canada, NZ chose not to join the federation of Australia, while different colonies that became Australia did)?

Or is Malaysia, Britain or China the mother country for Singapore?

Is the US also the mother country for Liberia?

Is Britain or France the mother country for Haiti and Jamaica, because it set up the institutions and set the tone for the culture, even though the people (descendants of African slaves) initially never wanted to be brought there in the first place?

Does the modern state of Israel have its mother country be the Biblical Israel, or do any of the western powers (Britain, the US and other allies) and members of the Jewish diaspora all over the world that agreed to and fought strongly for the modern set-up) that helped create the modern nation state ever deserve to be called "mother country" for it, at least as a post 1948 nation state.

I think "mother country" really opens up a real can of worms.

Not saying that Canada's origins versus the US are gonna be as controversial as say what the creation of modern Israel was like, but the concept of "you wouldn't be here without us, we created you, you're an offshoot of us" does rub people the wrong way. I don't think everyone everywhere the world over has a coherent definition of "mother country".

I mentioned in my initial posts that the Mother Country relationship (if it indeed exists) may not necessarily come about in the traditional way - even though there is some evidence that some elements were nonetheless in play.

Most people have not taken my caveat into account in their responses.

But there is definitely something there and the way Canadians focus on and mimic so many things about the U.S. is arguably reminiscent of relationships with a Mother Country as observed around the world.

Regardless of what the genesis of that relationship was.


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