Royal Visit to Canada

1 07 2011

“Canada, that most stalwart and uncontroversial of Britain’s former colonies, has long been unwavering in its devotion to its Queen.”

Those are the words of Canadian journalist Leah McLaren, writing in the arch-conservative paper The Daily Telegraph. Are they historically accurate? Discuss amongst yourselves…

For more royal visit gossip news please see here.

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2 responses

1 07 2011
jliedl

I’ve heard complaints, grumbles and moans about the monarchy since I first came to Canada in 1985. Count me as a stalwart monarchist, of course, but it’s a question that circulates at least once a year in the media (“Why do we have a Governor General instead of a REAL head of state?” “The queen can’t properly represent Canada!”).

So calling us unwavering is nice and all but I really think that’s only in comparison with Australia and their much louder republican stirrings.

5 07 2011
trevorparsons

Speaking as a conservative, I think monarchism is and has been a cornerstone of Canadian society since the foundation of Quebec in 1608. Republicanism has not made inroads because of the principles that our country was founded on, which were in essence, a reaction against the American revolution and the re-establishment of a high tory society, particularly in Upper Canada

Even the republican stance of the BQ is relatively new. If we look back at the pre-1960’s nationalist movements, they strove to create a pre-conquest society with no overt claims to support a republican Quebec. During the Second World War, most Quebecois supported Marechal Philippe Petain’s “Revolution National.” Early twentieth century French Canadian nationalists were influenced by the writings of the far right philosopher Charles Maurras, an avid monarchist and French nationalist.

I agree with jliedl in that the unwavering comment is in comparison to Australia, who had a republican referendum in 1999. But even that comparison is flawed in that the histories of Canada and Australia very different, in that the first settlers in Canada (by that I mean the Maritimes and Upper Canada) were United Empire Loyalists. Australia has also had to deal with a much earlier “seperatist” movement with the 1930’s referendum for the divison of Australia and the idea to create a seperate dominion in Western Australia, not to mention the importance that modern Australians hold towards the Eureka Stockade in comparison to how the Rebellions of 1837 are remembered in Canada. In my mind the Canada-Australia comparison is like apples and oranges, not to mean any disrespect towards that comment.

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