Quebec Nationalism • Maurice Duplessis • The Quiet Revolution • Pierre Trudeau • Rene Levesque • The Charter of Rights and Freedoms • Robert Bourassa and the Meech Lake Accord St-Jean Baptiste Parade in Montreal The Quiet Revolution • In 1959, Quebec premier Maurice Duplessis dies. • While he was the premier of Quebec, the Roman Catholic church ran the educational system and the health care system Maurice Duplessis The Quiet Revolution • In 1960, Jean Lesage became the premier of Quebec. • He “secularized” Quebec society by having the health care and educational systems reformed. These systems would now be run by the government. • Quebec was becoming a lot more modern. This change was called the “Quiet Revolution”. • Their slogan was “Maitres Chez Nous” or “masters in our own house”. Jean Lesage The Three Wise Men • In the 1960s, support for Quebec independence was increasing. • As a result, the federal government tried to get more Quebecers into the federal government. Their main politician from Quebec was Pierre Elliot Trudeau Trudeau, Marchand and Pelletier Trudeau • Pierre Trudeau was young, bilingual and intelligent (he was a university law professor). • He won the 1968 election and became Prime Minister of Canada. Trudeau was popular! Even John Lennon paid a visit! Trudeau’s Just Society • In order to address the issues that Canada was facing in the late 1960searly 1970s, Trudeau introduced: • Department of Regional Economic Expansion (DREE) to promote economic conditions in Canada’s poorer regions • Foreign Investment Review Agency (FIRA) to limit American control of the Canadian Economy • The Official languages Act (1969): Made Canada an officially bilingual country (French and English). (Used to stop Quebec independence) • Multicultarism Act (1971): Emphasized that all ethnic groups are equal. Trudeau the “Philosopher King” Quebec Independence • Despite Trudeau’s efforts, many Quebecers still felt frustrated with the federal government. They felt that the province of Quebec was the only government that could protect and promote the unique French language and culture in North America. • Many Quebecois felt that the English language was threatening the survival of the French language and culture. They looked to the Quebec government to do this. Their solution? • Quebec Independence Support for Rene Levesque’s Separatist Parti Quebecois and Independence was increasing Rene Levesque • Levesque was very different from Trudeau. Trudeau was wealthy, bilingual, rational and detested ethnic nationalism. Levesque was emotional with numerous imperfections. However, he appealed to the “common man” as was very popular. He endorsed ethnic (French) nationalism through his famous Bill 101 (1977) He was a smoker! Bill 101 Bill 101 (1977): • The law banned the usage of English on outdoor signs. • Restricted access to English schools. • The law was designed to make French the only official language of Quebec. This was a direct challenge to Trudeau’s vision of a bilingual Canada Quebec: A “Distinct” Society The Parti Quebecois The Parti Quebecois was formed By Rene Levesque in the early 1970s. In 1976, they won the Quebec Provincial Election. As a result, Rene Levesque became premier of Quebec. The Parti Quebecois believed that Quebec independence was a necessary step because Canadian federalism could not address and protect the Unique French Language and culture. Rene Levesque wins the 1976 Quebec Election The Parti Quebecois • The Parti Quebecois was committed to achieving Quebec independence. • However, unlike the FLQ, the Parti Quebecois believed that any change in Quebec’s constitutional status should be made democratically through an election (referendum), not through violent means (terrorism). • As a result, a referendum on Quebec Independence was held Trudeau vs Levesque • Pierre Trudeau was head of the federalist forces and fought to keep Quebec in Canada. • Levesque was head of the separatist forces and made a passionate plea to vote for independence. It would be a good fight! Impact on Quebec’s Society Independence: Yes or No? Neighbours, relatives and friends were divided The Result? The Referendum was held on May 20th, 1980: The Result? 60% for the Non 40% for the Oui The Constitution Act (1982) • After Trudeau won the Quebec Referendum, he proceeded to give Canada its own constitution and Charter of Rights. • The Charter of Rights was popular in English Canada but was unpopular in Quebec. • As a result, Quebec to this day remains the only province that has not signed the Canadian Constitution. The Queen Signs the Constitution Act The Constitution Act (1982) Robert Bourassa • When Brian Mulroney (from Baie Comeau, Quebec) became Prime Minister of Canada he sought to gain Quebec’s signature on the Canadian Constitution. • Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa stated that he would only sign the constitution if it was amended with a “distinct society” clause so that Quebec would have the powers to “protect and promote its distinct language and culture” Brian Mulroney and Robert Bourassa What Happened? • The Provinces agreed to sign the Meech Lake Accord in 1987. However, the Accord needed to be ratified within three years by the provinces. There would be elections in New Brunswick and Newfoundland. Manitoba would find issues with the Accord. • Many Aboriginal Canadians were upset with their lack of recognition. Were they not “distinct”? The Meech Lake Accord Meech Lake Accord • Canadians were upset due to the general lack of public consultation • Then the Quebec government passed Bill 178 in 1989 which banned the usage of English on all outdoor signs. • Many Canadians believed that the Meech Lake Accord would be used by future Quebec governments to infringe on linguistic minorities. Meech Lake Accord • The Accord died in June 1990 • MLA Elijah Harper prevented the Manitoba Legislature from ratifying the Accord • Nfld Premier Clyde Wells (a constitutional law expert) did the same. Manitoba MLA Elijah Harper • There were implications for nation unity Nfld Premier Clyde Wells Growth in Quebec Separatism • Support for Quebec Separatism grew as many Quebeckers felt that English Canada did not understand them • Many Quebeckers felt that independence was necessary as a means of protecting the future of the French language and culture. • There is thus a tension between collective and individual rights. St Jean Baptiste Parade Pierre Trudeau • Trudeau felt that Canada’s current constitutional framework from the BNA Act with the division of powers between the provinces and the federal government was enough. • Many Quebekers disagree. What’s your opinion?