From the Cutting Room Floor (2)

“Sometimes what was left out may be as important as what was left in” –  A Wise Old Film Editor

We are entering the stage of the rough edit with our editor Meiyen Chan, who did such a masterful job editing “Moving the Mountain.”

Here are more provocative discoveries I made along the road that may or may not make the final cut.

  • Sophie Zhang’s and Rosalind Wong’s take on Chinese Canadian (CC) culture vs Sino-Quebecois culture is very interesting. Their feeling is that while there is a vibrant CC culture there is no such thing as a Sino-Quebec culture.
  •  Cedric Sam’s insights on media and lack of cultural representation of Chinese and other minorities may explain why Sino-Quebecois culture is pre-nascent. When he tried to set up an Asian club at the elite Collège Brébeuf, someone scribbled “Ghetto” over the poster.
  •  There are 95,000 Chinese in Quebec, 85,000 in metro Montreal. Only 4% of government jobs are filled by minorities (30% of population). Very few minorities are represented in the major institutions of Quebec. Is lack of representation in the mass media and mass culture linked to problems of integration and the lack of job opportunities for the Chinese and other minorities?
  •  Do young Chinese have a special passion for Quebec in order to stay here? That’s the question posed by Robert at the Chinese Social Club. Young Chinese in Quebec are products of Bill 101 which gives them better opportunities to integrate into the majority, while adopting the French language and Quebecois culture; they feel a sense of belonging here.  The question is more pointed at their parents and grandparents, why did they stay? Did they have the passion? Perhaps they didn’t have a choice.

We can look at these issues under the rubric of:

  • Cultural tension, assimilation, integration, cultural nationalism/chauvinism, interculturalists, multiculturalists, or just staking a place in Quebec, remaining true to one’s own identity, as in the case of Bethany’s uncle.

More later …..