POLB52 – Lecture 6 – February 14 2013.
Nationalism and what it is very much contested. Within Canada there is very different
conception of what a nation is.
Different groups settle in different regions. Canada is next to Australia in scarcity. When you
look at the map of Canada, 90 percent live within 100 miles of the United States. Canada has
massive northern territory on its map. When you look at the map of Canada if you drive from
Toronto to Calgary, it’s a good three day non-stop driving. There are fewer people living in the
Northern part than in tiny little PEI. Population distribution doesn’t align this massive country.
Canada doesn’t really have Canadian sovereignty in the arctic. “If some countries have too much
history, Canada has too much geography and not that much history.” Hon. William Lyon
Mackenzie King 10 Prime Minister of Canada
What is it that separates people in Canada to people in the United States?
In Canada you have people who have different history who perceive Canada in a different way.
Quebec, Aboriginal, etc. had a history but it wasn’t Canadian history.
1867, the country comes to together because of the threat of the United States. Britain couldn’t
help them. The constitution was created to give relations of orders of government, and
provincial relations. They united together to make Quebec to preserve its culture, etc.
Everybody saw what they wanted in the Constitution but nothing was resolved in the
Constitution. There were different views in what Canada is all about. In Quebec they sold
Canada in a way to expand French speakers across the country. In Ontario it’s inspired by English
speaking Protestant who wanted to constrain French speakers and wanted English language to
be the dominant language. They had little sympathy of the French speakers. Then there was a
divide. 1880 there was officially a divide. When Manitoba came into confederation, they wanted
to keep French schools. 1880s, English speakers majority in Manitoba and abolished there
French schools. Overlapping cleavages (language) at this time.
Quebec – Quebec leaders in early 1900s development of a distinct Canadian identity. Canada
developed as its own colony.
o In the early days of confederation, French people were pushing for this.
o English speakers were pushing against it and with a different conception.
o The first Canadian Nationalist was French Canadians and was liberal. West, in the early
days of confederation, Canada was seen by people the central part of Canada as a way
to expand the territory for markets of central Canadian manufacturers.
o Main purpose is to expand the market to central Canadian manufactures.
o The government federal controlled all the railways in Canada, charged western farmers
to ship their products more than the East shipping to West. 1980s – National energy program – Pierre Trudeau – central Canadian could get oil and gas from
Alberta cheaper than internationally, limit foreign investment in the extraction of Alberta oil.
We didn’t have the industrial capacity to do this.
Different economic, language, etc. These create very important regional tension. These tensions
create differences in Public opinion polls in topics, Referendums – important differences. Even
to this day, these differences are reflected in patterns in voting.
How people refer to pop in the United States: Light blue – soda, yellow – pop, coke – purple.
These differences (regional patterns) exist because you and I are similar and you and I are also
not similar. People will find any excuse of any kind to create a group. Regionalism is a central
fact certain of political Canadian Facts and American.
Atlantic Canadians are custom to poverty than the West. The west was the prosperous and was
giving money to the East. The rise of the West: it was a back water hinterland, a periphery. It
had nobody there. Ontario was overwhelming the dominant economic and now it’s declining,
therefore the rise of the We