Abstract

This article critically examines three examples of the way in which peacekeeping functions as a mythological sign within the Canadian national imaginary, connoting a distinctly Canadian political ethos and ethics: the 1994 documentary Peacekeeper at War; the image "Remembrance and Peacekeeping" on the ten-dollar bill; and Lloyd Axworthy's 2003 political memoir Navigating a New World. The author argues that these representations of Canada's peacekeeper mythology reflect a nostalgic hunger for national distinction. As such, historical policies and initiatives such as Canada's contribution to the 1991 Persian Gulf War, its military intervention and abuses in Somalia in 1993, and the Canadian mission in Afghanistan's Kandahar province are produced within the narrative of peacekeeping as either acts of responsible action (i.e., bringing peace to the Other) or aberrations in an otherwise continuous narrative of Canada's benevolent action in the world.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 709-727
Launched on MUSE
2009-08-07
Open Access
No
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