'A Curse or a Blessing?': Montreal Jews and the Politics of 1960s Quebec

Type of resource
'A Curse or a Blessing?': Montreal Jews and the Politics of 1960s Quebec
The author argues in this revisionist article that the politics of the Quiet Revolution in Quebec in the 1960s invigorated Montreal Jews as a religious and cultural minority rather than marginalizing or alienating them. He contends that while Jewish activists remained critical of the expanding ambitions of the Quebec state and the rise of nationalism in the province, they took the opportunity to advance Jewish claims and adopted a largely positive outlook on their communal future in Quebec. In fact, he points out, Montreal Jews, like their Francophone neighbours, but perhaps unlike the majority of Quebec Anglophones, had motives to share in Quebec’s collective thrill during the 1960s: it created opportunities to discuss and advance cultural continuity. This perspective is crucial to nuance the popular assumption that animosity and reluctance alone characterized Quebec Jews’ reaction to the Quiet Revolution, leading many to find solace in Toronto after the election of the Parti Québécois and in reaction to long-smouldering tensions. By exploring the themes of education, French language, and nationalism in Jewish English-language newspapers and institutional sources from the 1960s, the author reveals more nuanced dynamics between Jews and French Canadians at the time of the Quiet Revolution.
Canadian Historical Review
Vol. 103
no. 3
September 2022
Lacasse, Simon-Pierre. “‘A Curse or a Blessing?’: Montreal Jews and the Politics of 1960s Quebec.” Canadian Historical Review Vol. 103, no. 3 (September 2022): 359–383.
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