National Identity In Canada

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Canada has a very rich history, despite being a younger country than most. This history constitutes many different methods, good or bad, that Canadians have tried in order to develop a significant national identity. For instance, Canada played an important role in both of the World Wars in attempts to establish a distinct national identity on the global stage. After World War Two, Canada joined the United Nations and began performing peacekeeping missions to provide aid to countries, thus creating a new facet to the Canadian national identity. However, Canada has also used unjust methods, such as establishing residential schools as a way to assimilate the First Nations into the government’s idea of what Canadian national identity should be.…show more content…
These identities existed long before Canada officially became a country, by political standards, 150 years ago. While First Nations are legally considered Canadians, the opinion on their national identity understandably differs between Aboriginals due to the unfair treatment of Aboriginals by the Canadian government. The First Nations’ collective identity has been deeply affected by the long history of violence and assimilation committed against them through genocide, unfair treaties, forcing them onto reservations, and residential schools. Nowadays, most post-secondary institutions offer courses on Aboriginal Studies to spread knowledge about Aboriginal culture as an integral component of Canada. Aboriginals can be considered a nation within Canada, similar to Francophones. Quebec is a very unique part of Canada, as its citizens mostly speak French compared to English. Quebec is such a unique community that it is widely debated on whether it should be its own nation-state or not. Francophones were once, and may still be, considered to be treated unfairly by the Canadian government. Canada made a huge step in equalizing Francophone identities and English-Canadian identities with the Official Languages Act that officially made Canada a bilingual nation-state. The relationship between the French and English languages is a central defining aspect of the Canadian…show more content…
Many Albertans believe that the Canadian government has treated them as more of a source for resources than an equal part of Canada. The government regulation of Alberta’s oil prices was seen as an unfair policy to protect Eastern Canada in spite of Alberta. Moreover, Albertans are upset that Alberta has less political power due to its population size. Nevertheless, Alberta is still an important part of Canada as Canada’s energy province and containing Banff National Park. Immigrants are also an important group to consider when defining Canada’s national identity as a multicultural nation. Canada has been taking immigrants and refugees for hundreds of years and will hopefully continue to do so. Each immigrant has a unique understanding of Canadian national identity as each is incorporated with different foreign cultures. Many immigrants value the freedom, rights, safety, and security that Canada provides them with. The Canadian opinion on migrants is mostly positive as this country was built and strengthened by immigration. My own parents immigrated to Canada in 1998 and my family is incredibly grateful that they did. Canada has offered my family so many opportunities that would not be available had my parents stayed in South Africa. I define Canada’s national identity with ideas like “multiculturalism” and “internationalism”

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