History department launches series of lectures to mark Canada’s 150th birthday

By Dale Johnson Posted: January 17, 2017 6:00 a.m.

Christopher Moore is the first speaker in the new Making of Canada Series, to mark the 150th anniversary of confederation.
Christopher Moore is the first speaker in the new Making of Canada Series, to mark the 150th anniversary of confederation. Photo courtesy of Paul Lawrence Photography

Historian Christopher Moore loves Canadian history and he believes most Canadians share his enthusiasm for the country’s past.

To help celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday this year, Moore has been invited to speak at the “Making of Canada” series hosted by the department of history.  

The first guest lecture is being held on Jan. 19, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.

Moore’s topic is: “A Living Tree? Canada’s Constitution 150 years ago – and today.”

“People still say Canadians don't care about Canadian history. But I've been writing about history for Canadians all my life, and I know they do. I'm grateful for every opportunity like this to meet some of them,” says Moore.

He will explore how the Constitution has evolved over the years – and also how it has not changed.

“The text has barely changed at all, except – a big except – for the Charter of Rights. Yet somehow the constitution has been flexible enough, or we read it flexibly enough, that it continues to serve us pretty well,” Moore explains.

He says there are several current issues that make understanding the constitution important.

“Well, we are still arguing about the Senate, aren't we? I will focus on three big issues: Indigenous people and the constitution, which should be the most profound issue today; Quebec and the constitution, which has been an issue all of my adult life; and the monarchy in the constitution, which might be a question for future Canadians.”

Moore says as we pause to reflect during Canada’s Sesquicentennial year, it’s amazing to think of the value of the constitution.

“This 150th anniversary, I find myself a little bit amazed that a document drafted by a handful of men in a pretty small and divided and undeveloped society so long ago, continues to be the constitution for this vastly changed Canada of the 21st century – and can serve us pretty well. That's really what I hope we can explore.”


EVENT:        The Making of Canada Series:  A Living Tree? Canada’s Constitution 150 years ago – and today
VENUE:        Education Building, Room 191
DATE:          January 19, 2017, 7:30 p.m.