Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Québec's 400th

I returned from the 400 year celebrations in Québec City recently, holding onto my sanity ever so tenuously. I had traveled into the belly of the nationalist beast and been bombarded for almost two weeks with the quatercentenary celebrations. Museum exhibits, art exhibits, street festivals, films, concerts, rallies, monuments, books and other displays of Québec's long and distinguished history. It was all the eye could see. Stretches of tourists, myself included, taking in the story about Champlain's fateful landing 400 years ago. I had been expecting more debate, more controversy, at least from the so-called Québec sovereigntists, but there was only a whisper among a deafening current of pride and exhilaration.

Luckily I found a few people who wanted to highlight the madness of commemorating the origins of French colonialism. Pace the photo at the top of this entry, courtesy of the anti-colonial contingent at the march I attended with some friends July 3rd.