Immigrant linguistic integration in the multilingual context of Montreal
We investigate the relative intensity of use of English and French at home for allophone immigrants in the Montreal metropolitan area. We find that the linguistic distances between immigrants’ mother tongues and English and French have an important impact on the relative intensities of use at home of the two Canadian official languages. However, immigrants whose mother tongues are closer to French than to English are relatively less likely to use an official language at home. We further investigate the role of spousal and other characteristics on the integration of immigrants. The results suggest that the home environment is an important factor contributing to the linguistic integration. Individuals exposed to an official language at home with their spouse have significantly higher rates of linguistic integration. Also, English is more attractive than French in the sense that immigrants with an Anglophone partner will have higher integration rates to English than those with a Francophone partner integrating to French.
Keywords: linguistic distance, linguistic integration, home language, immigrants, Montreal, Canada
Published online: 12 July 2021
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