Postnationalism - the Canadian experiment with national identity
Fascinating article on "postnationalism", spinning off Canadian Premier Justin Trudeau's comments (in 2015, to the NY Times) that Canada may be the “first postnational state... There is no core identity, no mainstream in Canada.” An excerpt:
First and foremost, postnationalism is a frame to understand our ongoing experiment in filling a vast yet unified geographic space with the diversity of the world. It is also a half-century old intellectual project, born of the country’s awakening from colonial slumber.
But postnationalism has also been in intermittent practise for centuries, since long before the nation-state of Canada was formalised in 1867. In some sense, we have always been thinking differently about this continent-wide landmass, using ideas borrowed from Indigenous societies. From the moment Europeans began arriving in North America they were made welcome by the locals, taught how to survive and thrive amid multiple identities and allegiances.
That welcome was often betrayed, in particular during the late 19th and 20thcenturies, when settler Canada did profound harm to Indigenous people. But, if the imbalance remains, so too does the influence: the model of another way of belonging.