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Canada in the 20th Century PowerPoint Presentation
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Canada in the 20th Century

Canada in the 20th Century

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Canada in the 20th Century

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  1. Canada in the 20th Century • WW I impacted Canada both on the political and economic levels • the war provided a stimulus to the economy; it also, briefly, eased tensions between Anglo and French Canadians • significant contribution by Canada to the war effort - 60,000 died

  2. division over question of conscription by 1917. Anti-conscription riots in Quebec. But conscription became law • French Canadians alienated by government policies, both in war and on home front - restriction on use of French in Ontario school system • WW I helped to strengthen racial and cultural divisions in Canada

  3. WW I saw the emergenceof a variety of forms of Canadian nationalisms - Anglo, both conservative and liberal - and French • Prime Minister Borden pushed for greater dominion autonomy for Canada and a share in formulating imperial polcy • Imperial War Cabinet was formed in 1917; Dominions participated in Versailles Treaty negotiations

  4. greater recognition for Canada’s international role • economic and political policies following WW I reflected government’s conservative policies - ‘law and order’, free markets • however, to protect private investments, the government created the Canadian National Railways (C.N.R.) as a publicly owned company

  5. unrest among the farming communities reflected a distrust of the business interests inthe eastern cities • a Farmers’ Platform was developed between 1916 and 1918 - populistdemands relating toelections, taxes, and vote for women • call for reform also emanated from Methodist Church in 1918 - criticism of capitalist system

  6. encouraged by growth of British Labour Party and success of Russian Revolution workers sought to achieve long-standing demands for shorter hours, collective bargaining, higher wages and social insurance • government and business interests responded with policies of censorship and repression, similar to the Red Scare of 1919 in U.S.

  7. Winnepig strike of 1919 led to widescale government repression of striking workers - leaders arrested and charged with sedition • however, even though the strike was broken by authorities, a number of strike leaders were elected to office • these years also witnessed the emergence of three major political figures: William Lyon Mackenzie King, Arthur Meighen and J.S. Woodsworth

  8. Mackenzie King - prime minister on a number of occasions; master of compromise, he led Canada through WW II and helped to transform the Commonwealth of Nations • he supported a social welfare state only when pressured from the left • a great Canadian, because he ‘ divided us least’

  9. Arthur Meighen represented the conservative interests; condemned the Winnepeg strikers and their demands for collective bargaining • J.S. Woodsworth - influenced by Fabianism, Christian Socialism and the American social gospel, he supported the Winnepeg strikers; • in 1921 he won a seat in parliament representing the Independent Labor Party; committed pacificist

  10. election of 1921 resulted in victory for Mackenzie King (Liberals); Progressives representing farmers made gains; Meighen’s Conservatives performed poorly • election represented growth of multi-party system in Canada • Mackenzie King gained French-Canadian support for his minority government - appointed Ernest Lapointe to his cabinet

  11. Mackenzie King’s government in the 1920’s guided by a need to remain sensitive to provincial rights; maintain fiscal orthodoxy and support an external policy based on non-commitment to the Empire-Commonwealth and the League of Nations • the government was also reluctant to intervene in provincial labor disputes (Nova Scotia) in support of worker’s rights

  12. a major change in Canada’s relationship to the British Empire came in 1923 at a meeting of the Imperial Conference • Dominions could negotiate their own treaties and pursue their own foreign policies • the 1931 British Statute of Westminister gave complete autonomy to the Dominions

  13. by the mid-twenties Canada’s economy experienced growth, despite problems associated with financial system, levels of unemployment in cities and lack of labor reforms • growing industrialization and urbanization • provinces sought greater powers to meet the increased demand for services; but they not equipped to meet the challenge of an increasingly urban society

  14. Canadian culture in the 1920’s strongly influenced by American fads - Jazz Age - and American movies, magazines, and radio programs • professional ice-hockey emerged as the national sport • search for a uniquely Canadian identity represented by the Group of Seven - painters

  15. in literature English-speaking Canadians emphasized realism; French Canadians sought their identity in a rediscovery of France • the novels of Abbe Groulx helped to build a sense of Quebecois nationalism

  16. Quebec’s economy in the 1920’s was still dominated by English-speaking Canadians • a small concession had been won in 1910 when bilingualism was made compulsory in Quebec’s public service • for many French speakers advancement in the business world was blocked

  17. during the 1920’s changes took place which affected religion, constitutional issues and provincial rights • in 1925a United Church of Canada - influenced the introduction of conservative policies regarding liquor laws - prohibition however, proved to be unworkable • one could spend a week in Toronto on a Sunday

  18. corruption scandal concerning the Customs Department was overshadowed by the ‘constitutional crisis’ of 1926 - the issue: whether the governor-general had the right to decide on the dissolution of parliament • Mackenzie King defeated Meighen in the election which followed. His campaign stood against any infringement of ‘Canadian autonomy’

  19. the ‘constitutional crisis’ also helped to further consolidate the multi-party system • the parliamentary system itself became more responsive to minority opinion • Progressives/leftists increasingly brought pressure on Mackenzie King to introduce social security measures - in 1927 an Old Age Pensions Act became law

  20. regional discontent emerged in 1927 with the Maritime Rights Movement and demands for greater control over natural resources in the prairie provinces and British Columbia • Canada’s ‘federal’ identity was challenged by provincial interests

  21. the stock market collapse of 1929 left Canada in a vulnerable position, dependent as it was on its grain exports • in the 1930’s Canada’s national income and GNP declined • acute impact of depression on specific social classes (workers) and regions (prairies /Maritimes)

  22. conservative government preoccupied with law and order matters; semi-police state • Cooperative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.) formed in 1933 called for an end to capitalism and the creation of a Cooperative Commonwealth • J.S. Woodsworth elected leader • wide support across Canada - exceptions Quebec

  23. by 1933 some 23% of the labor force was unemployed • with the promise of action to deal with the crisis the Conservatives won the election of 1930, under the leadership of R.B. Bennett • the Conservatives program included an emergency relief program and an increase in the tariff - a policy of protectionism

  24. in Quebec the depression’s major result was the formation of the Union Nationale, a combination of Conservative and Liberal politicians • they succeeded in ousting the government of Premier Taschereau in 1936 • new government of Maurice Duplessis proved to be corrupt and repressive

  25. Prime Minister Bennett introduced some reforms which had long term effects - in 1935 the Wheat Board was re-established and the Bank of Canada was fully nationalized in 1938 • Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was established and in 1937 the Trans-Canada Air Lines • most significantly, in 1935 Bennett announced the need to reform the capitalist system - a New Deal for the Canadian people

  26. unemployment and social insurance schemes were introduced; government planning embraced; minimum wages and maximum hours agreed • Mackenzie King questioned the constitutionality of these reforms in preparation for the upcoming election

  27. under the slogan ‘It’s King or Chaos’ the Liberals won the election of 1935 • Mackenzie King’s policies in government were markedly cautious - representing the deep conservatism of the 1930’s and 1940’s • the courts struck down the reform proposals of Bennett’s government - a commission met to review the constitutional issues in question

  28. opposition from the provinces made it impossible to implement any of the commission’s proposals • a new constitutional relationship between the provinces and Ottawa was still not available

  29. the constitutional crisis created by the abdication of Edward VIII in 1936 led to conflict between the government and opposition • Mackenzie King recognized the new monarch George VI, without first allowing parliament to have its say • the prime minister argued that the international situation demanded quick action to underline the unity of the British Empire

  30. in foreign policy Mackenzie King reflected the largely isolationist attitudes of most Canadians in the 1930’s • French Canadians were opposed to providing support for the British Empire • French Canadians also felt some sympathy for Italy and Franco’s Spain • the C.C.F. opposed involvement in any imperialistic war

  31. yet, Mackenzie King’s goal was to bring Canada united into war, should it come • but in the crises of the 1930’s Canada, under Mackenzie King, adopted a hands off approach • preparations for war, however, began in the belief that a British declaration of war would involve Canada

  32. Mackenzie King misread Hitler, even more than Chamberlain • visited Hitler in 1937, was reassured and impressed by Hitler’s achievements • even after Hitler seized Czechoslovakia in 1939 Mackenzie King believed some accomodation could be reached

  33. with the British declaration of war in 1939 the Canadian parliament, having been promised no conscription, voted to support the British • ‘unity’ on the war represented different positions. Most Canadians saw Canada providing economic assistance • Canada drifted into war • King’s win in the federal elections of 1940 provided him with support for his policies

  34. Mackenzie King opposed conscription; French Canadians were also strongly opposed • but by 1944 voluntary enlistment no longer sufficed • conscription finally came in November 1944. The response in Quebec included protests and resignations; in the conscription camps riot and near mutiny

  35. in the post-war election of 1945 the Liberals under Mackenzie King were victorious • the Liberal party would dominate Canadian politics in the subsequent years • the war expanded Canada’s industrial base • Canada had made a significant contribution to the Allied war effort. The war, in turn, strengthened national unity

  36. Mackenzie king retired in 1948 and was succeeded by Louis St Laurent • St. Laurent was conservative in his policies; French Canada could only survive within an independent Federal Canada • a symbol of post-war stability and affluence

  37. the two St Laurent administrations (to 1957) saw the emergence of English-speaking Canadian nationalism, a sustained economic boom, further federal programs of social insurance, regional equalization and educational growth • Newfoundland entered Confederation in 1949 -Canada’s tenth province

  38. in constitutional matters the Canadian parliament was empowered to amend the British North America Act • a Canadian-born governor general was appointed in 1952 - Vincent Massey • Massey encouraged the development of a distinctly Canadian culture - Canada Council • National Film Board became important as a producer of documentary and experimental films