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Section Two The Search for a National Identity

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1 Section Two The Search for a National Identity
Chapter Eight Canada Section Two The Search for a National Identity

2 Understanding the Past
Canada’s population is as vast and varied as its land. Most people identify with regional or ethnic groups rather than the nation as a whole. The two largest groups are: British Ancestry 40% French Ancestry 27%

3 The First Canadians The first people to live in what is now Canada were Inuit and Native Americans. These people developed stable societies and adapted to a wide range of environments. In the 1600’s, the rival European empires of England and France began colonizing the region. Soon England and France were battling each other for control of the land.

4 Colonial Rivalries French and English colonists clashed over the fur trade and land claims. Between 1689 and 1763, the English and French fought four wars in North America. The English defeated the French in the Battle of Quebec in 1759. In 1763 France surrendered all of its empire in what is now Canada to the English.

5 Ties to Britain Canada remained under direct British rule until 1867, when it received some control over domestic affairs. In 1931 Canada became an independent country, even though the British monarch is still Canada’s symbolic ruler.

6 Conflict Between Two Cultures
70,000 French colonists lived in Canada when the British took control in 1763. The British government passed laws ensuring that French Canadians would be able to maintain their own language, laws, and culture. Today both English and French are the official languages of Canada. Many French Canadians feel discriminated against by the English speaking majority. In the 1960’s the Quebecois, Quebec’s French speaking citizens, began to embrace the idea of separatism. Separatism- The desire to make Quebec an independent country. In 1974 French became the official language of Quebec. In 1995 a referendum was held on the issue of secession, but failed by a slim vote. Secede- To formally withdraw (in this case from Canada).

7 Welcoming Diversity, Promoting Unity
Many different groups make up Canadian society: British 40% French 27% Other European 20% (Mainly German, Italian, Ukrainian, Scandinavian, Dutch, and Polish) Asian 11.5% Native Canadian 1.5%

8 A Multicultural Society
There are 554,000 Canadians of Native decent in Canada. 41,000 of these are Inuit. Most Native Canadians live in the territories, or northern areas of Newfoundland, Ontario, and Quebec. The largest number of recent immigrants are form Asia, who are settling mostly in British Columbia.

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