Poli 101 - Canadian Government Full Notes

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University of British Columbia
Political Science
POLI 101
Allan Craigie

September 2010 Jessica GiangIdentityIn considering who we are we must realize there is always an opposite boygirl whitenonwhiteOur identity helps us decide what is important and what is not and helps us make sense of the worldIt is not always politically relevant or noticeablebecomes noticeable when contrasted with another identityGroupsThere is no universal human identityidentities are formed based on experiences and there is no meaningful identity as just a human beingAll groups are inherently exclusionary although not on purpose as they all imply an opposite ie Women excludes manGeography is important in identity its difficult to feel solidarity with someone who is geographically far away Usually those who are closer overshadow those who are far awayour identities focus on the local daytoday encounters and the nationAs membership in an identity gets bigger the personal value of that identity tends to decreaseIdentity politics in CanadaCanada is seen as a multicultural societycritics wonder if multiculturalism undermines the solidarity necessary for large national projects like redistributionKnown as the progressives dilemma to those on the left but this is a threat to all parties in the LR axis that attempts large national projects Multiculturalism in CanadaCanada as an exceptionOur recognition of diversity and group rights goes back to the 1774 Qubec Act and weve always had many signicant political groups Catholics Protestants FrEng SettlersAboriginals Immigrants from East and South Europe also came instead of just those from North Europe providing more diversityCanada also lacks an external colonial experiencewe never tried to colonize somewhere else instead our immigration policy has slowly let nonwhite people inWe are also extremely isolated with the US as our only neighbourno poor neighbors so no need to worry about illegal immigrantsIdentities and geographiesAs noted above geography affects identity Geography inuences identity byBorders Shapes how we communicate and identity with othersmay attach physical features to our identity mountains oceans forests etcClearly divides us cdns from them AmericansCommunication networksAll human interaction requires communicationcommunications provides pathways in which common identity markers and common political identities ow Identities follow paths of hierarchical metropolises urban areas and rural landsnot from the centre outwardsCommunication is only possible through shared background assumptions and conventionsLanguage is required for a shared identity but not for communication shared knowledge requiredBanality and background noiseOur national identity is reinforced by daily life our currency ag weather mapsCanadas bordersGlobalizationArgued that the internet weakens national identity but it may actually strengthen it ads are matched to your IP address infomarket ads according to where you live enforcing your geographyThe national identity is also very strong and not likely to be surpassedforged over time from history our identity centers around the nationit is what most go to war forNo longer strong focus on religionSeptember 2010 Jessica GiangPurpose of nationsAs the state grows and begins to intervene more in society its needs to legitimize its rule and gain support to carry out large state affairs through the idea of a nation could be an ethnic group who was already there or the state may create an identity amongst the people As it begins to require more things from the people their consent money obedience the people bring about the creation of a democracyPolitical cleavages politics about dividing resources fairlyno agreed upon denition of fair cleavages are the political fault lines which divide people within society things that divide us many cleavages transcend political parties no party to represent woman labour east etc There are parties that contain a broad number of these people but does not represent all the peopleParties cannot say I represent all these people because all those people dont vote for that party not merely divided on a left liberalright conservative axisMajor cleavages in Canadalanguagefederalism regionalism and nationalismethnicity multiculturalism and settlerAboriginalreligion genderclassLanguage Linked most closely with QubecSeen as driving force behind Qubcois nationalismFear of French language dying in North AmericaDebate between Qubec and Cdn government as to who is responsible for protecting French languageFederalismNationalism in Qubec and regionalism in West major forces in Canadian politics someone who grows up in downtown Vancouver or a shing village in nova scotia will have different experiences and different ideas of the Canadian stateDestroyed party system in 1993Created two new forcesBloc Qubcois and reform party of CanadaBased upon different conceptions of role of federal governmentEthnicityMulticulturalism is a fact in Canadian lifepeople from all over come to try to make a homeWhat it means is up for debatealways many tensions between religions how to accommodate certain cultures And accommodate their different viewsAs an immigrant society Canada needs to accommodate new immigrants but do new immigrants need to changeDifferent conceptions between settlers both old and new and Aboriginal Canadians ReligionOnce the key divide in Canadian politicsRoman Catholics historically supported Liberal party reason is not known and was the reason why Liberals dominated in the 20th centuryReligion and language used to be tied togetherCurrent debates over religious accommodationespecially with regard to Islam
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