50 Years of Official Bilingualism

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Challenges, Analyses and Testimonies
Edited by Richard Clement and Pierre Foucher

50 years of official bilingualism

50 years of official bilingualism

Fifty years ago, the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism published its final report. The result of innovative research and public consultations across the country, this report, replete with data and concepts, sets the stage for a comprehensive policy on official bilingualism, which would profoundly and indelibly change the face of Canada. The resolve to affirm the officially bilingual character of the country was met with the equally fervent determination to make French the common language of Quebecers.
This book provides a critical view of the content and the consequences of the report. It is the outcome of a series of conferences held across the country in 2013, which explored the impact of these two aspects. It combines analyses of the Commission’s activities, its main players, and the specific content of certain volumes of the report. The book is divided into three parts: the first outlines the progress accomplished since the publication of the report and contributors’ views of the challenges which continue to create controversy; the second part provides analyses and studies of topics covered by the Commission, effectively demonstrating how far things have evolved; and the third features testimonials, including a fascinating conversation between the first Commissioner for Official Languages, Keith Spicer, and the Commissioner in office at the time of publication, Graham Fraser.

This political, scholarly and introspective work will captivate all readers who are interested in linguistic debates in Canada and around the world. It is destined to make an original and essential contribution to the study of a defining moment in Canada’s evolution.

The Editors:

Richard Clément is a professor of psychology at the University of Ottawa. He is also the University Research Chair on Bilingualism and Society, and the founder and director of the Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute. His research interests include bilingualism, language acquisition, identity changes and acculturation. Clément is especially interested in the role of inter-group language communication in psychological adjustment and social harmony. He has received numerous national and international awards for his work and is currently a fellow of the Canadian Psychological Association and the American Psychological Association. In 2008, he was elected a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences of the Royal Society of Canada.

Pierre Foucher earned an LL.B. from Université de Montréal in 1977 and an LL.M. in Administrative Law from Queen’s University at Kingston in 1981. He has been a member of the Barreau du Québec since 1978. He has been teaching in the Faculty of Law at the University of Ottawa since 2008, in both the civil law and the common law sections. Before that, Foucher was a professor in the law faculty at Université de Moncton from 1980 to 2008 and associate dean from 1987 to 1992. Specializing in language rights, minority rights and constitutional law, he is regularly invited to national and international conferences and has written extensively on these topics. He is currently a part-time analyst for the Language Rights Support Program and an associate researcher at the Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute.


Preface by Graham Fraser

Progress and challenges

1. Fifty Years Later: The Legacy of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism
Graham Fraser

2. French, the Common Language of Quebec

Pierre Curzi

3. Does Bilingualism Have a Future in Canada?

Stéphane Dion

4. 50 Years After the Laurendeau-Dunton Commission: The Journey of French Ontario

François Boileau

5. A Manitoban Perspective on the B and B Commission

Roger Turenne

6. Bilingualism in Canada: Challenges for the Future

Raymond-M. Hébert

7. Official Bilingualism: Fair Exchange?

Sherry Simon

Studies and specific issues

8. The Legacy of the Laurendeau-Dunton Commission and the Principle of Cultural Equality

Michelle Landry

9. The Impact of Book IV of the Report of the Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism on Fundamental Rights and Multiculturalism in Canada

Ingride Roy

10. Language of Work in the Federal Public Service: What Is the Situation Today?

Matthieu LeBlanc

11. A Look Back at Wage Disparities between Francophone and Anglophone Men in New Brunswick:
What Has Happened Since 1971?

Éric Forgues and Maurice Beaudin

12. A Look Back at Book V of the Report of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism:
What Progress Has Been Made in the Provision of Provincial and Municipal Services in the Federal Capital?

Mark Power, Perri Ravon and Albert Nolette

13. Conversation between Keith Spicer and Graham Fraser

Edited by Richard Clément

14. Bilingualism and the Political Reality in Manitoba in 1983

Andy Anstett

Profiles of the Authors

Quality Paperback with tables, 5½×8½” 119 pg, Publication date: November 2014, ISBN 978-1-927465-18-9: $16.95

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From the same author/editor:
Cities and Languages (in English) Invenire, 2012
Villes et langues (in French) Invenire, 2012

Ebook: You can get “50 years of Bilingualism” in 3 e-book formats (ISBN 978-1-927465-19-6 each $9.99):

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