Canadians in the Making: A Social History of Canada

By Arthur R. M. Lower | Go to book overview

10: The first attempt
at living together

WHEN TWO PEOPLES DIFFERENT IN EVERY aspect of their lives are forced to share the same house, it cannot be expected that everything will go smoothly. When the one people has 'muscled in' on the other, the original occupants can hardly be blamed for not accepting its presence with gratitude. In. Canadian history, which is largely the working out of this problem, the wonder is, not that things have gone badly, but that they have gone so well. It was the formative years after the Conquest which largely determined the course they would take.

On the French, the Conquest with its long aftermath has had approximately the same effect as a revolution: a people who had never had to make revaluation of their way of life, now had to pull themselves together and find within themselves the resources to meet a totally new situation. The mere struggle for survival can in itself be of revolutionary effect: join this to learning to work a new set of institutions, and the result must have within it something of that release of energy which marks revolutions.

The thesis must not be exaggerated. After the Conquest religious institutions remained little changed. And changes in the secular institutions did not come all at once, nor did they affect all alike. At first, they must have appeared small, merely the substitution of one monarchy for another. But the eighteenth century was to end in the greatest change of all, representative government, and that was to prove the instrument of something close to revolution itself.

On the morrow of Conquest, two tasks presented themselves to the 'New Subjects': how to remain alive and, for those who thought about such matters, how to remain themselves. The first was to prove the easier, with all hands rallying to it and the conqueror proving unexpectedly helpful. The second has

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Canadians in the Making: A Social History of Canada
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xv
  • Part I: New France xxv
  • 1: France Comes to America 1
  • 2: the First Impact Of the Wilderness 10
  • 3: the Foundation Stones Of New France 18
  • 4: A Community Formed 27
  • 5: the Community Established 40
  • 6: New France And Roman Catholicism 56
  • 7: New France Reaches The Provincial Stage 71
  • 8: the Lilies Come Down! 81
  • Part II- British North America 93
  • 9: Aftermath of Conquest 95
  • 10: the First Attempt At Living Together 116
  • 11: the Private Quarrel Of the English 135
  • 12: the First Wave Of English Settlement 143
  • 113: the War of 1812, Constructive Conflict 173
  • 14: the Great Days of Settlement, 1820-1850 187
  • Notes to Chapter 15. 212
  • 16: Mid-Century 240
  • 17: the Height of Prosperity 259
  • 18: the Period of Confederation 273
  • Part Iii: Canada 287
  • 19: A Nation Begun 289
  • 20: the New Nation 299
  • 21: A Sturdy Yeomanry 327
  • 22: the Birth of Modern Canada 345
  • 23: the Transcontinental Country 358
  • 24: New Canadians 371
  • 25: the Immigrant Stocks In Canada 384
  • 27: Yesterday and To-Day 408
  • 28: New Gods for Old 423
  • Index *
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