The Hero and the Historians: Historiography and the Uses of Jacques Cartier by Alan GordonThe Hero and the Historians: Historiography and the Uses of Jacques Cartier by Alan Gordon

The Hero and the Historians: Historiography and the Uses of Jacques Cartier

byAlan Gordon

Paperback | July 1, 2010

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Historians have long engaged in passionate debate about collectivememory and the building of national identities. Alan Gordon focuses onone national hero – Jacques Cartier – to explore hownotions about the past have been created and passed on from generationto generation in English- and French-speaking Canada and used topresent particular ideas about the world.

The Hero and the Historians traces the evolution of Cartier’simage – from his exploration of the St. Lawrence in 1534 to themid-twentieth century, when hero worship fell from favour amongprofessional historians – and ties it to changing notions of thepast. Gordon reveals that nineteenth-century celebrations of Cartierreflected a particular understanding of history that accompanied thearrival of modernity in North America. This new sensibility, in turn,shaped the political and cultural currents of identity formation andnation building in Canada. Cartier may have been a point of contactbetween English- and French-Canadian nationalisms, but, as Gordonshows, the nature of that contact had profound limitations.

This important work shows how changing notions of the past haveshaped identity formation in English-speaking Canada and Quebec.

Alan Gordon is an associate professor in the Department of History, University of Guelph.
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Title:The Hero and the Historians: Historiography and the Uses of Jacques CartierFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 9 × 5.99 × 0.64 inPublished:July 1, 2010Publisher:Ubc PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0774817429

ISBN - 13:9780774817424

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction
1 The Sixteenth-Century World and Jacques Cartier
2 Forgetting and Remembering
3 The Invention of a Hero
4 Cartiermania
5 Common Sense
6 The Many Meanings of Jacques Cartier
7 Decline and Dispersal
8 Failure and Forgetting

Notes
Bibliography
Index

Editorial Reviews

Historians have long engaged in passionate debate about collectivememory and national identity. Alan Gordon focuses on one national hero– Jacques Cartier – to explore how notions about the pasthave been passed from generation to generation in English- andFrench-speaking Canada and used to present particular ideas about theworld. Nineteenth-century celebrations of Cartier reflected a newunderstanding of history that accompanied the arrival of modernity inNorth America. This sensibility, in turn, influenced the political andcultural currents of nation building in Canada. Cartier may havebeen a point of contact between English and French Canada, but thenature of that contact, as Gordon shows, had profound limitations.