Quebec Culture - The Traveller


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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Quebec Culture


Although there is literature in French-Canadian from the days of the colony and of New France, it is mainly since the 1960s and the "Quiet Revolution" in Quebec literature that shows a very vivacity. The great success of The Tin Flute by Gabrielle Roy, in 1945, is a harbinger of cultural awakening of the province at the end of the clerical regime's authoritarian "Great Darkness".

Quebec literature is often an engaged art, the linguistic and social issues. Preferred means of expression of the French Canadian language, she does not hesitate to use "slang" (vernacular Quebec) and talk of little people with great realism.

Among the major Quebec authors include Michel Tremblay (Chronicles of the Plateau Mont-Royal), Réjean Ducharme (L'Hiver de force), Hubert Aquin (Next Episode), Anne Hébert (Kamouraska), Marie-Claire Blais (A Season in the Life of Emmanuel) or Victor-Lévy Beaulieu (Race of the world).

Today, the Quebec writers, after the failures in the referendum on independence, seeking affirmation of fact less than the national expression of individuality and a certain dismay at the modern world.

Moreover, Quebec literature was enriched by the contribution of cultural communities located in Montreal, one of the best representatives is the Haitian-born writer Dany Laferriere (How to make love to a negro without getting tired ). Yves Beauchemin (Le Matou), Alice Munro (Les Filles de Caleb), Marie Laberge (The Taste of Happiness), Louis Hamelin (Rabies), Gaetan Soucy (The Little Girl Who Loved matches) and Nelly Arcan (Damn) count among Quebec's most acclaimed authors in recent years.

Performing Arts

In the 1960s, the theater makes its revolution with an innovative piece, Les Belles-Soeurs by Michel Tremblay, written in "slang" (slang Montreal) and showing the lives of the working classes in Quebec. Since then, Quebec theater shows a wide variety of styles and colors, with authors such as Jean Barbeau (Brush), Marcel Dubé (Masterpiece Theatre), Michel-Marc Bouchard (Lilies), René-Daniel Dubois (Being at Home with Claude) or Wajdi Mouawad (Littoral). The playwright and director Robert Lepage (The Far Side of the Moon) knows, meanwhile, with her dream world and strongly influenced by technology, an international audience.

Montreal is also a major center for contemporary dance. Many companies are very successful beyond Canadian borders, including Les Ballets jazz de Montreal and La La La Human Steps.

Circus arts are local artists radiate far beyond Quebec: Cirque Eloize and, especially, Cirque du Soleil (now several years in a multinational entertainment with an annual turnover of over $ 500 million ) conduct tours around the world. Its extravagant costumes, stunning scenery and its staging, using the circus as well as street theater, have a Cirque du Soleil show unique.


The Quebec singers are popular throughout the Francophone world. Engaged, poetic and independence in 60-70 years with big names like Felix Leclerc, Gilles Vigneault (My Country became his anthem "national" Quebec), Robert Charlebois and Diane Dufresne, Quebec song is now more trade with the musicals of Luc Plamondon and "voice" of Isabelle Boulay, not to mention the phenomenon Celine Dion became a mega-superstar. Performers like Richard Desjardins, Lynda Lemay, Yann Perreault or group Loco Locass perpetuate, for their part, the tradition of Quebec song and committed to text.


Supported by the National Film Board and a proactive policy, the Quebec film shows a very good form over the past forty years. Realistic, engaged and shot on a shoestring in the 1960s, it evokes the New Wave and the British Free Cinema in the 1960s and 1970s. The Quebec directors, independence and often engaged the left, make a film resolutely social and almost documentary. This is the heyday of Claude Jutra, Gilles Carle (The Death of a Lumberjack), Michel Brault (Orders) and Francis Mankiewicz (The Good riddance).

Trained in this school, Denys Arcand directed films often highly critical, ironic and sparkling dialogue. He acceded to the international recognition and success with his famous diptych The Decline of the American Empire and The Barbarian Invasions.

In recent years, the 7th Art Quebec is very popular in the halls of the province with blockbusters from popular culture (Seraphin, New France ...), comedy (The Boys, The Great Seduction) and movies the singular tone (Léolo Jean-Claude Lauzon, CRAZY Jean-Marc Vallée).

The Total Refusal

During the "dark ages", a group of artists sign this manifesto in 1948 that marks the unconventional history of Quebec. The text denounces the hegemony of the Church and the conservatism of Premier Maurice Duplessis, a French-Canadian society and backward on the sidelines of the world. Advocating a complete break with traditionalism, "Global Refusal" announces the "Quiet Revolution" that will free Quebec society in the 1960s and will enter the modern age. The "Global Refusal manifesto" is also the origin of the Automatist.

Composed of painters, sculptors, writers, dancers, actors and photographers gathered around the painter Paul-Emile Borduas, Automatist Movement advocates the denial of all the constraints and boasts the creative impulse; in painting as in life, it stands for freedom, spontaneity, dynamism and the primacy of sensation. Jean-Paul Riopelle, non-figurative abstract painter.

Quebec, a land of festivals

Quebecers love festivals. There's something for everyone at all times of the year, but with high inflation in the summer. More than 170 festivals and events are celebrated each year in Quebec!


  1. Oh yes! I've heard a lot about Quebec.Was suppose to go study there myself with bro and sis in law! Wish I could :(


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