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Module 33

Reconciling the Two Solitudes? The Debate over Official Languages, 1963-1995

Matthew Hayday

After nearly a century of largely ignoring questions of linguistic duality, in the 1960s and 1970s the Canadian government started crafting new language policies that aimed to foster institutional bilingualism and recognition of two official languages: English and French. At the same time, the government of Quebec was developing policies to promote the use of the French language. This module examines the heated debates that took place across Canada as these policies were being created and implemented, as well as the ongoing scholarly debate about the effectiveness and impact of these policies.

Primary sources:

  1. Document:  A Preliminary Report of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism.  Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism
  2. Document:  The Diary of Andre Laurendeau.  Andre Laurendeau
  3. Document:  The Canadian Reality.  Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism
  4. Cartoon:  Down the Ottawa Chimney.  John Collins
  5. Cartoon:  Christmas Card Season.  John Collins
  6. Document:  Why Are They Forcing French Down Our Throats?  Pierre Elliott Trudeau
  7. Document:  Bilingual Today, French Tomorrow:  Trudeau’s Master Plan and How it Can Be Stopped.  J. V. Andrew
  8. Cartoon:  Solitary in Bill 101.  Aislin (alias Terry Mosher)
  9. Cartoon:  Bilingual Signs.  Aislin (alias Terry Mosher)

Secondary sources:

  1. Kenneth McRoberts.  ‘Official Bilingualism.  Linguistic Equality from Sea to Sea’
  2. C. Michael MacMillan.  ‘Legislating Language Rights in Canada’

Introduction

List of Modules -- 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50