The results of the 2011 Canadian census have been released, and they make interesting reading for language lovers.
New data shows that Canada is becoming a nation of many languages because of waves of immigration. Canada is officially bilingual (English and French) but the survey reveals more than 200 languages are spoken in the country.
It’s also heartening to see people embracing the change:
Still, there is little doubt that new languages are changing Canada’s cultural landscape, and demographic experts say that’s a good thing.
“It really reflects the immigration patterns that we have seen evolve over the past two or three decades that shift away from the European immigration and toward Asia and Latin America,” said Doug Norris, chief demographer at Environics Analytics.
“When I look at the globalized world that we live in, the fact that we ourselves are becoming more diverse and reflecting all of those languages is a real asset to us as a country today.
“I think it strengthens us as a nation as opposed to a country which was very singular in terms of its language or ethnicity.” (Source: Vancouver Sun)
Interestingly, the census also reveals the different populations of major Canadian cities. In Toronto, the immigrant languages spoken most often in the home are Chinese languages and Punjabi, the same as in Vancouver. In Montreal, however, Arabic, Spanish and Italian are most common.
Why not try Spanish lessons in Toronto?