Getting Along in the World with Harper and Trudeau

By (author) Mike Blanchfield
Categories: Political Science
Publisher: McGill-Queen's University Press
Hardcover : 9780773548756, 304 pages, February 2017

How Stephen Harper changed Canadian foreign policy, and how Justin Trudeau is trying to turn it around.


From 2006 to 2015, Stephen Harper charted a new course for Canada’s foreign policy, turning away from multilateralism and refusing to “go along to get along” on the world stage. Justin Trudeau, in only his first few months in power, used his personal celebrity to rebrand Canada as a more sympathetic country in an attempt to swing the pendulum back to something more familiar. Chronicling Canada’s journey under these two prime ministers of the early 21st century, Swingback examines the ways the country’s relationships with the United Nations, Israel, Iran, and Russia changed under Harper’s leadership, and how this has affected the situation the Liberals have inherited.


“Swingback is a lively, provocative analysis of Canadian foreign policy under the Harper government by one of Canada’s leading journalists and will serve as a benchmark for future work by historians and students of Canadian politics. ” Fen Hampson, Carleton University

“In recapitulating this recent history, Swingback is methodical and readable… Throughout, Blanchfield mixes journalistic accounts of news conferences, overseas travel, and reportage from war zones with more traditional scholarly analysis. The result makes for a worthy read. ” Quill & Quire