CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

Pierre Berton.
Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart, 1990.
560pp., cloth, $29.95.
ISBN 0-7710-1270-5. CIP.

Subject Headings:
Canada-Economic conditions-1918-1945.

Grades 11 and up / Ages 16 and up

Reviewed by Donna J. Adrian.

Volume 18 Number 6
1990 November

The Great Depression chronologically covers a distinct time frame, from the stock market crash of 1929 to the entry of Canada into World War 11.

The book, based on interviews, personal reminiscences, political diaries, government reports, newspaper articles, economic studies, etc., is a fast-paced, well-written narrative. Stories are sad and touching, giving insight into a bygone era.

This is an immensely readable and fascinating history-of soup kitchens, enforced deportations, plagues of grasshoppers and dust and drought, strikes and unions, work camps, the rise of the Social Credit, CCF and Union Nationale parties, the fear of communism and inept government. It also reveals the fearful trampling of human rights-civil, economic, social and political-in Canada during that decade. Wonderful characters emerge: Tim Buck, Mitch Hepburn, Bill Aberhart, Maurice Duplessis. The prime ministers, R.B. Bennett and Mackenzie King, emerge as the villains.

Footnotes, a bibliography and an index complete the book.

Recommended for high school and public libraries.

Donna J. Adrian, Laurenval School Board, Rosemere, PQ.
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1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


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