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Synopsis

In 2000, Ian McKay, a highly respected historian at Queen's University, published an article in the Canadian Historical Review entitled "The Liberal Order Framework: A Prospectus for a Reconnaissance of Canadian History." Written to address a crisis in Canadian history, this detailed, programmatic, and well-argued article had an immediate impact on the field. Proposing that Canadian history should be mapped through a process of reconnaisance, and that the Canadian state should be understood as a project of liberal rule in North America, the essay prompted debate immediately upon publication. Liberalism and Hegemony assembles some of Canada's finest historians to continue the debate sparked by McKay's essay.

The essays collected here explore the possibilities and limits presented by "The Liberal Order Framework" for various segments of Canadian history, and within them, the paramount influence of liberalism throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries is debated in the context of aboriginal history, environmental history, the history of the family, the development of political thought and ideas, and municipal governance.

Like McKay's "The Liberal Order Framework," which is included in this volume with a response to recent criticism, Liberalism and Hegemony is a fascinating foray into current historical thought and provides the historical community with a book that will act both as a reference and a guide for future research.

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