The Pacific Coast


A US Satellite?
Cultural Colony
Economic Integration
Canada in the world today


Canada was the first victim of American mass culture. It was the first country to be touched by American movies, television, radios, songs, magazines, advertising. In 1951, the Massey Report (Vincent Massey, who was the first Canadian ambassador to Washington, was chairman of Royal Commission on National Development in the Arts, Letters, and Sciences) argued that to survive, Canadian culture must receive substantial help from the state. This recommendation was followed with the creation in 1957 of Canada Council, a federal agency whose role was to subsidize arts in Canada. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the National Film Board were reinforced to protect Canadian production in the face of American mass culture.


Those measures only had a limited success. Canada did maintain a cultural production, but could not stop the flood of American cultural products. However, little by little, Canadians came to realize that their situation was not so different from that of the rest of the world. Intellectuals also put forward the idea that mass culture was inevitable in a time of growing democracy and technological improvement. It was only an accident that this mass culture came from the US, and hopefully, in time, it would become more international than American.