Is the passé simple used in spoken French at all in regions other than France, such as in Canada or in Africa? I know that it has largely fallen out of use in speech in France itself, but do these former French colonial areas maintain the use of the passé simple or of other historic grammar constructions?
In Canada, in the province of Québec, we do not use the passé simple in spoken french. We use passé composé instead.
We do however use it in litterature. Even then, we see it as formal and a lot of contemporary novels are written using passé composé. I would even say that it sets the tone of a book.
My wife is from Benin and I've never heard people there use the passé simple in everyday life. I suppose it is also true for most of French-speaking West Africa. West Africans can have more "châtié" French than French people though.