Damn Quebec

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I was in the library today, I took out the DVD “Beloved”, which stars Miss Oprah Winfrey. I was a little annoyed when I saw this big display celebrating the 400th anniversary of Quebec City, and nothing to recognise British Columbia’s 150th birthday.


Yes, I admit, 400 is a lot more impressive than 150 so I naturally expect more attention in the Canadian newspapers and so forth.

But I expect to see more emphasis on British Columbian milestones in the Vancouver Public Library.

I, for one, take great stock in the unique history and culture of this land and think it’s pathetic that Canadian leaders don’t seem to share this view. That big banner, for example, was funded by the Candian government. I know Canada has poured millions into Quebec’s celebrations, but not much into ours.

I feel that the whole concept of “Canadian culture”and “identity” is a crock of shit perpetuated by political and cultural leaders and institutions in places like Toronto. I lived in Ontario for four years and did a degree in Canadian Studies and feel that so much about Canadian culture and history is presented from an Ontario/Quebec centric perspective.

This school of thought argues that Canadian history took place in Central Canada. All the events of historical and cultural consequence took place in Ontario or Quebec.

British Columbia is viewed by many out there as a beautiful, unspoiled hinterland. A destination for exploration, retreat and new beginings. A place where Ontarians and Quebecers can go to start afresh.

Above all, it’s a place with no history or culture.

That’s such bullshit. There’s so much history here, and we need to do a better job of recognising this.

So, I respectfully request that the library throws that Quebec thing into the river and put up a nice British Columbian display.

I am a resident of Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada who has blogged here for 20 years. I like to share my thoughts and feelings on my own online space. From 1998 until 2017 I worked as a journalist and I hope to use this website as an archive for all of my stories.

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  1. Canadians grow up thinking that every country but their own has history worth talking about. The same goes for culture, commerce and just about anything else we can think of. This is why our corporations are owned by everyone else but Canadians (think of our mining and forestry companies, as well as Hudson’s Bay), and why the average person knows more about US presidents than their own Prime Ministers or, more importantly, their provinces Premiers.

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