“The English fact in Quebec” examined

By Yarema Kelebay & William Brooks

The following article review was published in the News and Chronicle, Montreal, Thursday, April 24, 1980.

An English edition of “le Fait Anglais au Quebec” by Sheila McLeod Arnopoulos and Dominic Clift was published by McGill-Queens University Press. On the eve of the Parti Quebecois independence referendum the book set out to define the Quebec Anglophone community in terms of its past, present and future perspectives.

According to reports Arnopoulos and Clift were to share the 1979 Governor Generals award for non-fiction in French. In the following review Kelebay and Brooks offer readers a second opinion on the book’s merits.

Under a timely title: “The English Fact in Quebec” Arnopoulos and Clift offer a rather tired thesis to Canadian readers.

Relying on highly tendentious sources, such as Canada’s senior Marxist historian, Stanley Ryerson and Montreal’s clever young iconoclast, Tom Naylor, they direct a steady stream of criticism at what they call “English economic behaviour.” For this read Canadian capitalism. Given sources of this tenor their version of history and economics is somewhat predictable.

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