“Is Canada a nation, simply a country, or a ‘post national’ state’?

With respect to both of the articles assigned, I believe that Canada should be considered a nation. Canada, like any other recognized nation in the world, shares many values and traits such as the acceptance of immigration, the efforts made to include minorities, and celebrating multiple cultures in the name of diversity. We have multiple shared values yet we find ourselves questioning our own identity, mainly because of the mind-boggling capacity for diversity we have – a trait that we are arguably most famous for.

Debates as such arise because “Canada’s particular style of nationalism is fluid and not simple to define”, but our nationalism is also the reason why people “often arrive from dysfunctional regions [to Canada]” (Todd, 2016). To obtain healthy nationalism, a nation must “encourage diverse people to cooperate” (Todd, 2016). We are considering the label of a “post-national state” because of the fear of coming off as an oppressing nation that disregards minority standpoints. I believe that this is not the case as it is a fear based on extreme measures, as “condemning nationalism because it can lead to war is like condemning love because it can lead to murder”(Chesterton, unknown). Canadian identity is indeed influenced by others’ perceptions, yet we as Canadian citizens should have the ultimate decision as to how we are defined. “75 per cent of [Canadian] residents believe there is a “unique Canadian culture.”(Todd, 2016). If the majority of our citizens feel united through a homogeneity, whatever that may be, shouldn’t Canada be considered a nation bound together by that “unique[ly] Canadian” culture? Take Vancouver for instance. Vancouver is a city composed of many cultures yet it functions together as a whole, as “Vancouver”, a microcosm of Canada as a nation. Canada is not a simple country of land mass or the “greatest hotel on earth” (Martel, unknown). Canada is a nation that carries a plethora of cultures that come together to form one singular “Canadian” nation that 75% per cent of us belong in.

 

Sources:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jan/04/the-canada-experiment-is-this-the-worlds-first-postnational-country

http://www.vancouversun.com/opinion/columnists/douglas+todd+dangers+postnational+canada/11779069/story.html