A History for the Future

Rewriting Memory and Identity in Quebec

By (author) Jocelyn Létourneau
Categories: History
Publisher: McGill-Queen's University Press
Hardcover : 9780773527249, 176 pages, July 2004


In A History for the Future Jocelyn Létourneau, a leader of the new wave of Quebec intellectuals, examines the hotly debated topics of history and memory in Quebec and Canada. Rather than focus on the past itself, he considers the challenge of turning the past into a narrative that contributes to building a better society, thereby establishing a liberating legacy for that society’s heirs. As relatively new societies whose memories and histories are built on European foundations, the interrelated narratives of Quebec and Canadian history provide a rich body of material for such a far-reaching reflection. By investigating the role Quebec’s historical narrative plays for contemporary Quebecers, Létourneau shows how interpretations of the past affect a society’s future.


"This book that must be read by anyone who wants to understand the historical roots or present condition of Canada and Quebec. It will be integral all future debates on these topics. The book is full of stimulating and well-phrased ideas. " Jean-Jacques Si

"Stunningly intelligent, provocative, perceptive, and at once scholarly and poetic, this is a major book that ranks among significant works dealing with Quebec identity. Completely original . .. it is the work of an eminent intellectual whose profound, sen

"a very subtle and impressive meditation on contemporary Quebec's historical imagination . .. it deserves to become the focus of a wide-ranging discussion on the future of Canadian history. [Létourneau is] one of the subtlest minds to explore the possibility of writing history under conditions of postmodernity. " Ian Mackay, Histoire sociale - Social History