Seminar: Trudeau, Thatcher and the Fight for Canada's Constitution

The Centre of Canadian Studies is delighted to co-host this seminar to be given by Frédéric Bastien (Dawson College, Montreal) with the Centre on Constitutional Change,.

After the Quebec referendum in 1980, Pierre Elliott Trudeau turned his sights on repatriating the Canadian Constitution from Britain. What should have been a simple process snowballed into a complicated intrigue. Quebec mounted a charm offensive to influence key British MPs. Canada's native leaders, who felt betrayed by the Crown, entered  the fray to secure their own interests. The British Labour Party had a view, which chiefly involved embarrassing Prime Minister Thatcher.

In his new book The Battle of London: Trudeau, Thatcher and the Fight for Canada’s Constitution, historian Frédéric Bastien describes with flair how the maverick Trudeau and the uncompromising Thatcher entered into one of history's most unlikely marriages of convenience in order to repatriate the Canadian Constitution. As the United Kingdom contemplates constitutional changes following the referendum in Scotland, he looks at the lesson for Scotland.

The seminar will take place in Room G.04, David Hume Tower, on 11 December 2014, 12:30 to 2:00 pm