When the members of the 2012 Canadian Studies Capstone Seminar at Carleton University first embarked on this journey, each brought to the table different backgrounds and different life experiences. From our diversity grew a quintessential element that not only shapes our individual identities, but also provides the cornerstone to our sense of Belonging in Canada. We began this journey by participating in a guided tour of the Canadian War Museum and the Museum of Civilization, including the Children’s Museum.
Although we each chose to deal with a separate subject inspired by our trip to the museums, we found that a recurring theme presented itself. We found that during our voyage we were continually required to deal with the tensions between reality and representations. As we began to reconcile with these differences a common theme emerged, that of belonging.
As our journey continued, we began to discover that it was not only who or what belonged, it was also who did not belong that was essential in our attempt to solve problems of identity, race, gender, and nationalism. We began to question who might belong to the nation and whether we have come to terms with our differences. Are we really the inclusive nation that we perceive ourselves to be? In order to deal with some of these challenges we have compiled a series of articles that can be broken down into three categories.
- The relationship between belonging and cultural survival.
- Dominant versus excluded narratives.
- The role of symbols in Canadian myths and identity.
We sincerely hope that you enjoy this latest issue, titled Belonging in Canada: Questions and Challenges— and we hope that it enables you to come to terms with the issues of belonging that continue to be an ongoing dilemma in Canada today.
The 2012 Capstone Seminar Series Journal Editorial Board
From around the table: James Benning, Carly Donaldson, Elaine Radman, Lashia Jones and John-Paul Albelshauser.