In Abitibi, hundreds of kilometres from the city, thousands of workers go North, as did Jos Montferrand and François Paradis. Working as brush cutters, these 21st-century lumberjacks discover Quebec's boreal forest. Far from their families, they spend 5 or 6 months a year in logging camps that mirror a new Quebec, those of French-Canadian descent and neo-Quebecers from Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia. All have come to earn a living in the forest. Filmmaker Stéphanie Lanthier invites us to spend an entire season inside this northern micro society. Using a direct cinema technique in the style of Pierre Perrault, she documents the lives of the brush cutters.
Ages 16 to 17
Civics/Citizenship - Federal/Provincial Government
Geography - Natural Resources
Discuss the motivation and determination of people who settle in a new country. You can ask students a series of questions. Where do immigrant workers get their strong work ethic? Is there a link between working hard and coming from another country? Despite their dedication to their jobs, are brush clearers always satisfied with work conditions? What do they want from the government and from forestry officials specifically?