History Essay

Submitted By Alex-Tippett
Words: 1247
Pages: 5

Does Canada Really Have a Unique
Identity by 1967?

Alex Tippett
May 26, 2015

Canada has spent years building itself as a country and creating an its identity, however was it really successful in doing this? In the fifties and sixties, the economy in
Canada relied too heavily on that of the United States to be considered “its own”, and its culture was mostly that which they had adopted from other countries. There were few aspects within these areas that were actually of their own creation. As for politics, the government was split in two very large and significant parts and therefore Canada at the time did not have a single political identity either. By 1967, Canada had acquired several symbols that were unique to the country and Canadians were recognized for their actions in quite a few important world events, however really these factors made
Canada too similar and diverse to have one single definable identity.
First of all, in this era, Canada’s economy was largely dependent upon that of the
United States especially when referring to branch plants.These were stores and plants placed in Canada while the parent firm remained in the United States.1 These branches would provide jobs and more products for canadians,2 therefore improving the economy and the lives of the general population, however now Canada’s economy was no longer independent. If these companies were to shut down in the United States, or the country were to go bankrupt, then it would affect Canada significantly, and the structure that the economy was built upon was not created by them either. Also, canadians were buying more American products than those made in their own country. The government realized this and in an attempt to fix it, put out propaganda promoting the population to
“Buy Canadian”. This didn’t stop the huge amount of merchandise being brought in from

1
2

In class lesson:
1950s and 1960s.
May 14 and 15, 2015. Bolotta, Angelo. “Booming Fifties.” In
Canada; Face of a Nation.
Vancouver. Gage: 2000. Page 206

the United states. 3 Despite the desire to get Canadians to buy more local products, in
1965, the two countries made an agreement to remove taxes from new automotive vehicles coming and going out of Canada.4 This did not help the situation and in fact, only encouraged it. Altogether, the economy of Canada is not its own therefore there is no unique economical identity.
.

Furthermore, all throughout the 1900s, Canadians modeled their lives similarly to

those of their American neighbours. Both countries were so close in terms of trade and geography which made it easy to share a lot of their culture including entertainment. In the early fifties, Canada was introduced to television; a new technology that had captivated the attention and wonder of the entire continent.5 At first, Canada had very few of their own stations, so Canadians watched American shows such as
I Love Lucy and
Roy Rogers, and just as in the United States, they began to model their lifestyles after those presented in the show.6 This absorption of American style and habits left
Canada without its own distinctive ones. As well as television, Canada also adopted the music styles of different countries, embracing Rock­and­Roll and eventually, in the sixties, falling in love with Britain`s Beatles. Rock music captured the attention of the young generation in North America with its quick beat and loud manner, and it was especially popular due to the invention of the portable radio and high­fidelity record player.7 Canada itself did produce some very successful artists, songs and bands,

Bolotta, Angelo. “The Sixties; A Decade of Sweeping Change.” In
Canada; Face of a Nation.
Vancouver.
Gage: 2000. Page 228.
4
Bolotta, Angelo. “The Sixties; A Decade of Sweeping Change.” In
Canada; Face of a Nation.
Vancouver.
Gage: 2000. Page 230.
5
Bolotta, Angelo. “Booming Fifties.” In …