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Monday, March 09, 2020 

A Chinese cartoonist's experiences in Quebec

CBC's got an article about a Chinese cartoonist living in Montreal who drew some comics about her experiences living in Canada's most French-speaking province:
Since moving from China to Montreal five months ago, Zoe Qiu has been documenting her immigrant experience the best way she knows how — by making comics.

The comics, which Qiu has been posting on Instagram as "La vie au Québec," touches on everything from "bonjour-hi" at the pharmacy to debating whether Canada is a French-speaking country.
The following, depending on the context you view it in, looked fishy to me:
These challenges include trying to learn French. Several of her comics touch on some of the so-called land mines of the language.

"It is already driving me crazy," she laughed. "French makes the words into male and female — everything has its gender!"

Qiu, who draws herself with rabbit ears, said she understands that French is important in Montreal and is making the effort — something other immigrants can empathize with.
As it so happens, the Hebrew language does the same, as do Italian and Spanish, to be sure, and many far-eastern natives who come to Israel and do business in the local language are aware of this too. After spotting this, I'm beginning to wonder if the CBC put that there deliberately out of political correctness in a climate where SJWs are trying to take gender out of everything for PC's sake. If they did, that's troubling.

Other than that, I think the lady's got a great idea doing these cartoons on Instagram to tell what life is like in the Great White North. I just wish it were being told through a better news source.

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It works the other way round too. Native speakers of romance languages sometimes talk about how appalled they are when they learn English by its lack of gender, by its androgynous quality that seems to drain all the color out of the world it describes. It makes sentences more confusing, too. When words lack gender, it is harder to know what subject a pronoun relates too.

It does have its paradoxes. In French, Her Majesty the King is a perfectly normal phrase, because majesty is feminine-gendered.

English, or the languages of the Anglo-Saxons that preceded it, used to be gendered, but discarded that feature many centuries ago. Maybe conservatives should think about a campaign to revive that aspect of the language as a bulwark against creeping progressivism?

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