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Beyond Riel

Episode 3: Manitoba’s French Linguistic Crisis

In our pre­vi­ous episode we high­light­ed the deci­sive role Louis Riel and the Métis played in enshrin­ing French and Eng­lish rights in Manitoba’s con­sti­tu­tion. Today we explore the French lin­guis­tic cri­sis of the 1980s and how this tumul­tuous peri­od has shaped French rights in Man­i­to­ba today. 

Manitoba’s French his­to­ry dates back to at least 1738 and we have Louis Riel and the Métis to thank for ensur­ing French and Eng­lish rights were enshrined in Manitoba’s con­sti­tu­tion. While these French rights were not always respect­ed, they are today. French schools in Man­i­to­ba are oper­at­ed by a French school divi­sion and there are also immer­sion schools, allow­ing non-Fran­coph­o­nes to also get a French education.

For more infor­ma­tion on Beyond Riel please vis­it: https://​umfm​.com/​s​e​r​i​e​s​/​b​eyond…

Exec­u­tive pro­duc­ers for the pod­cast are Ian T.D. Thom­son and André Marchildon. 

Our tech­ni­cal pro­duc­er is Frédérick Demers, and our con­sult­ing pro­duc­er is Gabriel Tougas. 

Music for the series is pro­vid­ed by Rayan­nah.


  • Jacqueline Blay

    Jacqueline Blay, who previously lived in Algeria, France and Spain, immigrated to Canada in the mid-sixties and studied Canadian and Manitoban history. As a reporter for Radio-Canada, she covered these important files and wrote several books on the history of Francophones in Manitoba.

    Jacqueline previously served as president of the Société de la francophonie manitobaine, the SFM, which has represented French speaking Manitobans since 1968.

    Jacqueline has received numerous awards including the Order of Manitoba, the province’s highest honour for her commitment to Francophone heritage.

    You can find the books Jacqueline has written on the history of French in Manitoba here.