In a Big Country: Size and Canadian Identity

Like Australia, Canada is known for being big. But whereas there are extensive literatures examining how Northernness, wilderness, and frontier have shaped Canadian national identity, surprisingly little has been written expressly on its size. This paper will explore how size has informed Canada’s development, with an emphasis on the consolidation and articulation of the nation around Confederation in 1867, and its expansion from a country of under one million square kilometres to one of nine million just a decade later.








Alan MacEachern teaches environmental history at the University of Western Ontario and is the founding director of NiCHE: Network in Canadian History & Environment. He has written extensively on the Canadian field, edits the Canadian History & Environment series at University of Calgary Press, and writes “The Associate” column for Canada’s university magazine, University Affairs.

Date & time

Wed 28 May 2014, 4.15–5.30pm


McDonald Room, Menzies Library

Event series


School of History


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