The Elegant Canadians

Paperback | August 28, 2013

byLuella Creighton

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Opening with the Queen Victoria's arrival in Charlottetown harbor, visitors from the Old World emerge with erroneous expectations: they are constantly surprised that the New World is a place of energy, creativity, and imagination, reflected in exuberant architecture, dress, and culture.Elegance flourishes and society blossoms in gala events where long after midnight "the crinolines swayed, multicoloured and seemingly endowed with independent life of their own." In this lively mix of fact and fiction, Creighton is fascinated by the stuff of culture, here depicted as a distinctiveweave of style, sophistication, and individuality with a unique Canadian character. Her fascination is also with cultural difference. In Canada there is undoubtedly unqualified elegance, but it is an edgier, harder-earned elegance than that of the pompous, baggage-bound Old World.Published in 1967, exactly one hundred years after Confederation, Creighton's book shows a Canada in the best of all possible worlds. Gone is pioneer poverty and environmental hardship, replaced now by thriving sophistication. At the same time, this is a world that still retains some respect forsocial hierarchy, decent manners, and old-fashioned inherited wisdom - the unspoken corollary here is that the Canada of 1967 has grown sloppy, noisy, and vulgar. Lovingly researched and assembled with sixty images, this depiction of Canada in the 1860s reveals much about our own history andmyth-making.

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From the Publisher

Opening with the Queen Victoria's arrival in Charlottetown harbor, visitors from the Old World emerge with erroneous expectations: they are constantly surprised that the New World is a place of energy, creativity, and imagination, reflected in exuberant architecture, dress, and culture.Elegance flourishes and society blossoms in gala e...

Luella Creighton (1901-1996) was born in Stouffville, Ontario. She studied at the University of Toronto under E.J. Pratt and the Sorbonne, and later married esteemed Canadian historian and writer Donald Creighton, with whom she had two children. A writer of fiction, non-fiction, and children's stories, she is best-known for her novel H...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:192 pages, 9.19 × 6.62 × 0.48 inPublished:August 28, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199008523

ISBN - 13:9780199008520

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Table of Contents

Introduction to the Wynford EditionForeword1. Rendezvous at Charlottetown2. The Canadians Entertain3. The Travellers and the Towns4. Christmas in a Village, Canada West, 18665. Winter Time and "The Cone"6. Spacious Days7. The Chatelaine8. The Fashionable Years9. The Sixties and the Simple Faith10. Canadians in Paris, 186711. Concerning the Duty of Women12. Literary Life13. The Sound of Music14. The Glamour of the Garrison15. Summer Time16. Mr. Lawson Comes Home17. Old Grey City18. On the First of July, 1867Notes

Editorial Reviews

"The most engaging and informative work of Canadian social history ever written." --Sandra Gwyn, author of The Private Capital: Ambition and Love in the Age of Macdonald and Laurier