WHY WE ACT LIKE CANADIANS: A PERSONAL EXPLORATION OF OUR NATIONAL CHARACTER
Volume 11 Number 4.
Pierre Berton has written a book for all Canadians who know that Canadians are different from United States citizens but can't really place their finger on any concrete examples. In Why We Act Like Canadians Berton does just that: he explains our differences by drawing on interesting facts of our history and the history of the United States. He uses examples to aid his explanations such as the Canadian love of "law, order and good government" in settling the West. In Canada the North West Mounted Police preceded the settlers; while in the U. S., the settlers preceded the law, the untrained lawmen in the U.S. being locally elected people to carry out a somewhat crude form of justice resulting in such events as the Gunfight at OK Corral.
Who is better to write of our differences than Pierre Berton, a Canadian nationalist who has made Canadian history popular with books such as The National Dream, The Last Spike, The Invasion of Canada and Flames Across the Border, to name a few.
The book consists of only six chapters, open letters written to an American friend. It has no index, but then none is necessary. The author's style is interesting and flows easily. Its only minor drawbacks might be that in a few places Berton tends to be somewhat repetitious. Also, some of the vocabulary used may make some of the passages a little difficult reading for the average high school student. Even with the vocabulary, "Why We Act Like Canadians would complement any advanced high school Canadian studies course and would be of more than a passing interest to most Canadians.
Dennis Nosyk, Leduc S. H. S., Leduc, AB.
1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995
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