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Tue Jun 19, 2012, 02:43 PM

War of 1812: Violence, glory and a new Canadian-ness (BBC) {200th Ann'v'sy}

Canada today is seen as a harmonious nation of hockey, mounties and maple leaves, in peaceful contrast to its often fractious and noisy neighbour to the south. But Canadian-ness itself was born amid the blood, gunpowder and glory of the War of 1812, writes Grant Stoddard.

As a British-born newcomer to Canada, I've noticed Canadians see their Canadian-ness as the sum total of their shared values, interests and beliefs.

By contrast, in other places national identity is more typically linked to battles, popular uprisings and improbable triumphs in the face of adversity: the Boston Tea Party, the storming of the Bastille, the October Revolution.

This led me to assume that while Canada is a wonderful place to live, it lacked a rousing origin story.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that the story of the birth of Canadian-ness - which began 200 years ago this week - is as rollicking, bloody, stirring and inspiring as they come.
more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18497113

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