British North America Act

Queen Victoria gave royal assent to the British North America Act on this date in 1867, to take effect on July 1st.

Frye in “Criticism and Environment”:

The second stage of cultural development in Canada revolves around the Confederation of 1867, the union of the two Canadas, now Ontario and Quebec, with two Maritime Provinces, and eventually British Columbia. This stage is characterized by a search for a distinctively “Canadian identity,” more particularly in English Canada, and attached to this search are a number of critical fallacies that are important to diagnose. The first and most elementary of these is the fallacy of the exclusive characteristic, or nonexistent essence, the attempt to distinguish something that is, in this case, “truly Canadian,” and is not to be found in other literatures. There are no exclusive or even defining characteristics anywhere in literature: there are only degrees of emphasis, and anyone looking for such characteristics soon gets as confused as a racist looking for pure Aryans. (CW 12, 573-4)

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