We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE

A Nation Beyond Borders

Lionel Groulx on French-Canadian Minorities

Michel Bock

Publication Year: 2014

“The dominant fact about French life in America, during the past century, is without a doubt that it has become dispersed. French Canada can no longer be considered a geographical expression defined by the borders of Québec.” These were the words Lionel Groulx used in 1935 to describe the parameters of the French-Canadian nation.

Intellectual leader of the nationalist school from the 1920s to the 1950s, the priest and historian became one of the chief advocates of solidarity between Québec and the French minorities, his nationalism extending well beyond the borders of la vieille province.
For some fifty years now, the redefinition of nationalist discourse in terms of territory alone has been reflected in the writings of many Québec historians and intellectuals. With a few exceptions, researchers have, in their studies of Groulx, tended to disregard the issue of the French minorities, one that nevertheless constitutes a fundamental element of his thought. Since the 1950s, the Canon has been portrayed, more often than not, as the architect of a “Québecois” nationalism, sometimes a separatist nationalism, essentially seeking greater political autonomy for Québec.
If the recent debates surrounding Lionel Groulx’s thought are any indication of a sustained interest in the man, they also suggest that historians have not nearly exhausted their study of his work.

Published by: University of Ottawa Press

Title Page, Copyright

pdf iconDownload PDF (168.9 KB)
pp. i-iv

Table of Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF (82.0 KB)
pp. v-vii

read more

Translator’s Note

Ferdinanda Van Gennip

pdf iconDownload PDF (45.4 KB)
pp. ix

A few points of clarification regarding the style and terminology used in this book may be useful. While the lack of inclusive language may offend some, it was felt that in a work of historiography such as this, it would be too jarring to translate, for example, les hommes as “men and women...

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (67.6 KB)
pp. xi-xiv

In 2004, when this book was originally published, the historiographical debates surrounding the ideology of Abbé Lionel Groulx (1878–1967) were once again heating up. As French Canada’s most influential nationalist intellectual from the 1920s to the 1950s, the interest Groulx has elicited over...

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (102.4 KB)
pp. 1-11

“The dominant fact about French life in America, during the past century, is without a doubt that it became dispersed. French Canada can no longer be defined as a geographical expression limited by the borders of Québec.”1 Those were the parameters used by Lionel Groulx...

read more

Chapter One. The French Minorities in the Work and Thought of Lionel Groulx: The Blind Spot of Historians of French-Canadian Nationalism

pdf iconDownload PDF (632.3 KB)
pp. 13-50

The French-Canadian national identity issue is one that historians rarely seem to tire of. There is in our historiography—from François-Xavier Garneau to Gérard Bouchard, including Fernand Dumont and, of course, Lionel Groulx—a tradition which, despite different...

read more

Chapter Two. The French Minorities, Remnant of an Empire: French Canada, Its Apostolic Vocation and Founding Mission

pdf iconDownload PDF (745.7 KB)
pp. 51-94

We have observed, in the preceding chapter, that the vast majority of historians of French-Canadian nationalism and of Lionel Groulx’s thought tend to ignore the issue of the French minorities. The theory of “provincialism,” first proposed in the 1950s, has only in the last twenty years...

read more

Chapter Three. Québec and Its Relationship to the French Minorities: The Ties That Bind

pdf iconDownload PDF (746.2 KB)
pp. 95-131

Lionel Groulx regarded the French-Canadian nation as an organic entity or a “being” whose emergence, willed by Providence, dated back to the era of New France. As such, the national organism continued to evolve, grow and develop. Groulx’s view was that the English...

read more

Chapter Four. The Franco-Ontarians and Regulation 17: The Awakening of the Nation The Awakening of the Nation

pdf iconDownload PDF (726.9 KB)
pp. 133-178

The Regulation 17 crisis (1912–1927) is considered even today as a foundational event for the Franco-Ontarian1 identity. In fact, it was during those years of conflict that some of the most important Franco-Ontarian institutions were born, the Association canadienne-française d’éducation...

read more

Chapter Five. The French Minorities and the “French State”: The Indépendantiste Theory During the Interwar Period

pdf iconDownload PDF (619.1 KB)
pp. 179-208

To what extent did Abbé Groulx contribute to pushing the French-Canadian nationalist movement toward indépendantisme or, at least, a more territorial version of nationalism that limited itself to Québec and excluded the French minorities in the other provinces? The minorities, as we have demonstrated...

read more

Chapter Six. From the Second World War to the Quiet Revolution: Lionel Groulx, the French Minorities and Québécois Neo‑Nationalism (1945–1967)

pdf iconDownload PDF (780.8 KB)
pp. 209-250

Historians of French Canada generally consider the postwar years as a period of extraordinary transformation. Impelled by the young intellectuals of the 1940s and 1950s, the nationalist movement sought to “modernize” the French-Canadian nation. It wanted to see the nation reconciled...

read more


pdf iconDownload PDF (87.3 KB)
pp. 251-258

The political and ideological upheavals of the postwar period and the Quiet Revolution in Quebec, provoked a mixed reaction from Lionel Groulx. On the one hand, he applauded the ever-increasing numbers in the French-Canadian political class supporting nationalism (especially...

Selected Bibliography

pdf iconDownload PDF (108.9 KB)
pp. 259-270


pdf iconDownload PDF (576.8 KB)
pp. 271-277

E-ISBN-13: 9780776621579

Page Count: 325
Publication Year: 2014