Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

Education and linguistic boundaries in Québec : student representations and pedagogical reflections from a critical perspective

Annie Pilote, Marie-Odile Magnan, Cynthia Groff

Abstract


Relations between francophones and anglophones in Québec City reflect historical struggles and changing power relations between the groups. Using a constructivist and interactionist approach to identity and ethnicity, we examine the role of English language schools in intergroup relations. We present findings from two qualitative studies conducted with youth who attended English language schools in Québec City, showing how the school system contributes to the (re)production of linguistic boundaries. The boundaries evident between language groups, as illustrated in student drawings and memories, reflect complex power relations between the groups. Taking into account these power relations and with reference to previous initiatives for addressing intergroup relations, we propose a pedagogical approach that incorporates the tools of critical pedagogy to improve intergroup relations in social contexts such as Québec City. Pedagogical activities using this critical approach would lead students to challenge power relations and intergroup categorization between anglophones and francophones in Québec.

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