The surest way to the hearts of a Canadian audience is to inform them that their souls are to be identified with rock, rapids, wilderness, and virgin (but exploitable) forest. This critical statement no longer explains Canada's largely urban culture. Multiculturalism, feminism, postmodernism, and regionalism—these and other vital movements jostle for expression in today's Canada. Wherever there's a centre, a new margin vies for attention. Whenever a new voice catches the country's ear, another appears to challenge it. However styles form, new ways of expression keep shaping themselves. Nation without a narrative? Yes. But in the music, literature, painting, history and popular culture of this country, you can always find a soul.
Dr. Elspeth Cameron is the author of three award-winning biographies: Hugh Maclennan: A Writer's Life, Irving Layton: A Portrait and Earle Birney: A Life. She also published an award-winning memoir in 1997 titled No Previous Experience. Professor Cameron teaches in the English Language and Literature department at Brock University.