melykin says: “In Canada, Quebec seems to be much more corrupt than the rest of Canada. (This difference pre-dates mass immigration from non-European sources).”

sure enough, that seems to be true: Quebec: The most corrupt province.

i wondered where in france the québécois came from — one of the more inbred regions maybe? doesn’t look like it.

from (the first page of) The French Canadians in the Province of Quebec (’cause i don’t have access to the full article) [links added by me]:

“The ancestors of the French Canadians came from the northwest of France, chiefly from Normandy, Perche, Beauce, Maine, Anjou, Touraine, Poitou, Aunis, Angoumois, Saintonge, and part of Gascony. Nineteen twentieths of this population were derived from the above-mentioned provinces, and not from Brittany, as has often been stated.”

i drew a map. or, rather, i outlined these areas in orange on a map someone else drew (~_^):

if wikipedia is to be believed, most — or a lot — of the french immigrants to canada came from the area i outlined in red. (the ancestors of the acadians, many of whom wound up as cajuns in louisiana, came mostly from the area i outlined in green, which was also the homeland of the huguenots funnily enough.)

the orange areas had fairly low levels of consanguineous marriages in the twentieth century. and, i think, probably in the 1800s as well going by segalen’s reports on central france for that time period. what about cousin marriage rates for earlier periods in these orange areas? dunno. they probably weren’t much lower than the twentieth century figures, but were they much higher? my guess is probably not extraordinarily so, but i don’t know for sure.

which doesn’t really fit “the theory.” these very corrupt french canadians ought to have an inbred background according to me, right? well, maybe i’m wrong (“failure is always an option!” (~_^) ) — or maybe the french canadians will prove to be the exception that proves the rule. or maybe the past inbreeding rates were higher.

or maybe the corruption levels have to do with their subsequent inbreeding…?

only a few thousand (5,800?) french folks settled in canada in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and from that stock we got the 10M+ french canadians of today. Six thousand (6,000) french settlers would mean, roughly, 3,000 couples (if the numbers of men and women were equal, which they may not have been). (i’ve also seen a figure of ca. 8,000 french settlers, so that would mean 4,000 couples. edit: or 2,600 québécois!) that’s a rather narrow gene pool for founding a population. it’s a sort of inbreeding in itself.

and there was definitely plenty of cousin marriage amongst the french canadians down through the years. one study of the mating patterns in the 1800s in an area of quebec that had less inbreeding than other parts of the region found that the inbreeding coefficient of offspring there was 0.0111. that’s the equivalent of everyone in the region being second cousins-once-removed to third cousins. (and that was based on genealogical records from canada, so it doesn’t even take into account that the base population was already pretty closely related having started off so small.)

so, inbreeding in french canada happened. for a couple of hundred years — on top of starting off as a small-sized population. enough inbreeding to lead to the population having a rather corrupt nature? dunno.

of course, quebec isn’t only populated by french canadians. there are also irish and italians and people of english and scottish descent. but mostly it’s french canadians.

previously: french canadians still evolving and meanwhile, in france…

(note: comments do not require an email. yay french canada!)

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