Tempora Mutantur Et Nos Mutamur In Illis

(Times change and we change with them.)

Something I learned last weekend from several speakers at the Couchiching Conference on “Project Canada” surprised me. In the matter of integrating immigrants, we used to believe that the American pattern was that of the melting pot and the Canadian one, the mosaic. In recent years, we were told, the pattern has reversed. In Canada the rate of social and institutional integration is now smoother than in the States and, in fact, if not in words, the pattern resembles that of the melting pot.

To understand the reasons for this reversal, another conference may be required.


4 responses to “Tempora Mutantur Et Nos Mutamur In Illis

  1. Horace Krever

    But, in fact, in Canada, were mosaic and assimilation ever mutually exclusive or was the belief folklore?

  2. They are not mutually exclusive. The Sikh Canadian embrace of the Toronto Raptors, which engaged a number of African-American players in a cross-cultural learning experience. Then there is Hockey Night in the Punjab…play-by-play of Maple Leaf Games in Punjabi. My favorite is Sugar Sammy, indo-Canadian comic schooled in Bill 101 Quebec, mocking Pure Laine Quebecers and their separatist cause in impeccable street smart local French to sell out audiences and cheers from his targets. The thing about adding a new flavour into the melting pot is that the stew changes too! To mix metaphors, in Canada at least they do not have to lose their distinct flavour at the same time.

  3. Gwen Burrows

    Sly! Looking forward to future discussions.

  4. Horace Krever

    The current Olympic Games brought a fantasy social science experiment to mind:

    1. Suppose soccer matches between, say, Italy vs Canada, Greece vs Canada, and Israel vs Canada. Which teams would Italian-Canadians, Greek-Canadians, and Jewish-Canadians cheer for?

    2. Now substitute American for Canadian.

    Would the results be different?