Canada

Canada

Canada

Canada

Excerpt

BY EDGAR MC INNIS

IN THE BASIC PATTERN of Canadian life, one of the most pervasive factors is the racial dualism which colours almost every phase of national activity. It is a factor which stems inescapably from the very fact of Canada's existence as an independent community. Geography and history have combined to produce a situation in which the two paramount stocks, British and French, have had no other choice than to live side by side as distinct peoples within a single state. Neither of them has proved strong enough to absorb, or even to impose its outlook and standards and policies on, the other. The price of political unity has been the acceptance of ethnic and cultural diversity, with all that that implies in the way of concessions and compromise.

This situation, so striking to even the casual observer, has frequently obscured the fact that the population of Canada is multi-racial rather than merely bi-racial in its origins. Slightly less than half of her 13,500,000 people are of British stock. The French account for another So per cent. The remainder--one-fifth of the whole--is made up of people drawn from all the diverse races of Europe, with a sprinkling from those of Asia as well.

Looked at from this aspect, the fundamental dualism of the Dominion can be seen to lie in cultural rather than in purely racial divergences. Ethnic differences gain their real significance when they are joined to differences in language and religion, in social customs and historical traditions, which combine to produce differing concepts of the type of society towards which the community should strive. None the less, there is a very real sense in . . .

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