The Sixties: Passion, Politics, and Style Paperback – Apr 1 2008
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The Sixties: Passion, Politics and Style makes a significant contribution to the existing historiography in Canada. The new areas in Canadian history addressed by the authors make this volume especially important. Robert Rutherdale, Algoma University College, Laurentian University
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The first is Kristy A. Holmes essay "Negotiating Citizenship" which explores Trudeau's grand social experiments into bilingualism, multiculturalism, and feminism incorporated into the motto "Reason over Passion." Holmes problematizes the gendered notions of liberal citizenship through its universalizing tendencies and individualistic masculinity.
De Gaulle's "Vivre Le Quebec" speech is given a close contextual analysis by Olivier Courteaux who argues that de Gaulle's vision of a commonwealth of francophonie nations was too utopian and neglected the divergent paths that say Quebec and France had taken in the past 200+ years.
Finally, Krys Verrall's essay "Art and Urban Renewal" compares slum clearances in the U.S. with Canada with close attention to the racialized aspects in Africville in Halifax as they were in Harlem in New York. I could go on, but the other essays on automobiles and masculinity, social control over drug use, the legacy of the Quiet Revolution, and suburbanization are all prominently featured as well.
Ultimately, the over-arching theme is the ambiguous legacy of the 1960s. A time of great contradiction, and as Anastakis' fellow Trent Professor Bryan Palmer argues, great irony. We may never fully explore what the 1960s meant to Canadians, but this book is a good start.