Former Centre Director commemorates 50 Years of Canada's Offical Languages Act

Professor Ged Martin has just published 'French in the Canadian public sphere, 1763-1969' as a tribute to the Act.

Canada is officially a bilingual country, yet the French language has often been inaudible in the public sphere. The fiftieth anniversary of the Official Languages Act of 1969 seems an appropriate moment to explore how far Canadian public life recognised the country's linguistic duality in earlier times. The primary purpose of this paper is to ask which English Canadian public figures could speak French, and were prepared to use French, either in the public, political domain or in private dealings with Francophone colleagues. It may seem a simple and obvious question, but it is one that is not always easy to answer. Read more here.