Now, it starts.

October 15th, 2008

So, I made a decent amount of progress on last week’s goals even though I can’t cross them out as completed.  First, I discovered that I could draw out a lot of interview data from handwritten notes, isolating less than four hours of recordings to listen to rather than eight.  There’s a long car ride this weekend that I can spend doing the rest.  Good.  And I spent two hours with Stu last Friday learning how to use the GIS program to get maps made.  I plan to spend a couple hours tomorrow before class in the computer lab playing with that.  He says that the hard part is done, since most of the data I need is already in.  I know how to put more in, should I need it (I probably will).  Good good.  I’ve isolated a few chunks of primary research that I want to hit in the chapter I’m working on, but haven’t had the time yet to actually draw conclusions from it.  And, in spite of having a lot of research done, I have only a vague idea at this moment of what secondary research I will use to back up my ideas.  But no worries.  Likely that vagueness is just because I don’t have the research list in front of my face.

At this point, I know that (in spite of what some people said in interviews) immigrants had a definite impact on the last Quebec referendum on independence.  I am curious to know how strong that correlation is.  [[The answer is .725/-.725 for the influence of immigrant population on the Non/Oui votes.  Ridiculously correlated!  As for Haitians, not so much… .081/-.081.]]  Lucky me, we’re doing statistics tomorrow in class! [[Check that off the list.]]  Also, I know that Haitians from the earlier waves of migration had a more pleasant experience and a generally more positive view of their integration into society.  Later waves were less impressed, due in part to racism, recession, and issues of Quebec national identity that caused Quebeckers to lash out.  Part of this divide in how Haitians perceive their time in Montreal is due to the type of job and language skills that they arrived with.  Regardless, it seems that Haitians are able to participate politically and many choose to do so.  There are a number of  “activists”, a decent group of government workers, and still another set of actual political representatives for a variety of parties and at every level of government (local, provincial, federal, and suprafederal*).  It will be interesting to see how I force myself to draw a distinct, solid conclusion from the data.  I have an idea, but I can’t phrase it yet.  Oh well, I have a week…

So, goals: 1) make maps [[I think this is mostly done, for now, but I can’t bring myself to cross it off the list]]; 2) code interviews [[Pretty much done!  Enough to know what I’m talking about]]; 3) brush up on bios of political candidates/reps; 4) review primary sources; 5) write chapter six!

*Btw:  I made up the word suprafederal to designate Michaelle Jean; she’s the Governor-General, an appointed representative of all of Canada with no formal place in the legislative, judicial or active executive body.  Historically, her position is to mediate relations between the Crown and the Colony (I think).  Now, …  I’ll have to look that up.

One Response to “Now, it starts.”

  1. mablaa on October 17, 2008 12:15 pm

    Liz, your motivation is inspiring 🙂 Glad to hear that you’re making good progress on several fronts.

    I’m curious about this part of your post: “. . . I know that (in spite of what some people said in interviews) immigrants had a definite impact on the last Quebec referendum on independence.” How do you account for the people who (apparently incorrectly) perceive no immigrant impact on the referendum, and can they factor into your discussion in any significant way?

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