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"Transcolonial circuits" : historical fiction and national identities in Ireland, Scotland, and Canada Cabajsky, Andrea 2002

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T R A N S C O L O N I A L CIRCUITS": HISTORICAL FICTION A N D N A T I O N A L IDENTITIES IN IRELAND, SCOTLAND, A N D C A N A D A by ANDREA CABAJSKY B . A . , The University o f Western Ontario, 1994 M . A . , The University o f Western Ontario, 1995 A THESIS SUBMITTED I N PARTIAL F U L F I L L M E N T OF T H E R E Q U I R E M E N T S F O R T H E D E G R E E OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY  in THE F A C U L T Y OF G R A D U A T E STUDIES  We accept thi^f thesis- as conforrnjng to fhe required standard  T H E UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH C O L U M B I A July 2002 © A n d r e a Cabajsky, 2002  In  presenting this  degree at the  thesis in  University of  partial  fulfilment  of  of  department  requirements  British Columbia, I agree that the  freely available for reference and study. I further copying  the  by  his  or  her  representatives.  an advanced  Library shall make it  agree that permission for extensive  this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted or  for  It  is  by the  understood  that  head of copying  my or  publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.  Department of  (f^GjUiSH  The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  Date  DE-6 (2/88)  p e r - ld|o2-  11  Abstract "TPvANSCOLONIAL C I R C U I T S " : H I S T O R I C A L F I C T I O N A N D N A T I O N A L IDENTITIES IN I R E L A N D , S C O T L A N D , A N D  CANADA  by Andrea Cabajsky Supervisor: Professor Eva-Marie Kroller  '"Transcolonial Circuits': Historical Fiction and National Identities in Ireland, Scotland, and Canada" explores the intersections between gender, canon-formation, and literary genre in order to argue that English- and French-Canadian historical fiction was influenced, both in form and content, by the precedent-setting fictions o f Scotland and Ireland in the early nineteenth century. Conceived i n the spirit o f Katie Trumpener's Bardic  Nationalism:  The Romantic  Novel  and the British  Empire  (1997), this dissertation  extends Trumpener's examination o f nineteenth-century British and Canadian romantic fiction by exploring in greater detail the flow o f ideas and literary techniques between Ireland, Scotland, and English and French Canada. It does so in order to revise critical understandings of the formal and thematic origins and development o f Canadian historical fiction from the nineteenth century to the present. Chapter One functions as a series o f literary snapshots that examine historically the critical and popular reception of novels by M a r i a Edgeworth and Sydney Owenson in Ireland, Sir Walter Scott in Scotland, John Richardson, W i l l i a m Kirby, and Jean M c l l w r a i t h i n English Canada, and Philippe Aubert de Gaspe and Napoleon Bourassa in French Canada. I pay particular attention to the issues o f gender and political ideology as  Ill  inseparable from the history of the novel itself. In Chapter T w o , by focussing on the travel trope, I examine in detail how Irish, Scottish, and Canadian writers transformed the investigative journeys o f Samuel Johnson and Arthur Young into journeys o f resistance to the dictates of the metropolis. Chapter Three focuses on the complications o f marriage as a metaphor o f intercultural union. It pays particular attention to the intersections between gender, sexuality, and colonial identity. The Conclusion extends the concerns raised in the thesis about the relationship between historical writing and national identity to the late-twentieth-century Canadian context, by examining the adaptation o f literary and historiographical conventions to the medium o f television in the C B C / S R C television series Canada:  A People's  History,  which aired in 2001-02.  iv  Table of Contents Abstract  ii  Acknowledgements  v  INTRODUCTION  CHAPTER ONE:  Literary Genre, Canon Formation, and National Identity  1  The Authors, Their Books, and Their Reception  20  Maria Edgeworth, Castle Rackrent (1800) Sydney Owenson, The Wild Irish Girl (1806) Sir Walter Scott, Waverley (1814) John Richardson, Wacousta (1832) Philippe Aubert de Gaspe, Les Anciens Canadiens Napoleon Bourassa, Jacques  et Marie  (1863)  (1865)  W i l l i a m Kirby, The Golden Dog (1877) Jean Mcllwraith, A Diana of Quebec (1912) CHAPTER TWO:  Mobile Archives: Travelers Around Britain and the Empire  Envoi Arrivals Go-Betweens and Border Countries Ethnographies Departures CHAPTER THREE:  Failed Marriages, Broken Promises, and Menages a Trois  Mothers and Fathers Courtships Broken Promises Menages a Trois Matrimony The B i g House EPILOGUE:  History for the "Television A g e " : The C B C as National Historian  23 28 32 36 42 45  50 55  66 66 73 81 92 102  116 116 125 130 138 144 147  155  The Series and its Reception A Literary Critic' s Response  155 165  Bibliography  171  Acknowledgements  The roots o f this project on transcultural migrations and cultural translation may be said to lie with my grandfather. Shortly after my parents left Czechoslovakia (as the story goes, with nothing but their Slovak-English dictionaries in their back pockets), my grandfather tried to learn English by reading, o f all things, Walter Scott's Ivanhoe. his copy o f Ivanhoe  I have  on my bookshelf. H i s notes in the margins, so diligent at the  beginning, suddenly disappear around page 20. I'd like to thank my parents, who have been my backbone for all these years, for counting down the days with me, for commiserating with me, and for celebrating, from three thousand kilometres away. To my Supervisor, Eva-Marie Kroller, words cannot express my gratitude for her support, for her help, for instilling confidence in me when my confidence in my abilities waned. Without her, this dissertation could not have been written. Her supervision has been exemplary. I'd like to thank my first and second readers, Miranda Burgess and K e v i n M c N e i l l y , whose expertise has been invaluable to me. Miranda introduced me to nineteenth-century Scottish and Irish literature during my comprehensive exams. The research that I began at that time on the national tale and the historical novel, and which I have pursued, with Miranda's great help, in this dissertation, w i l l have a lasting influence on my scholarship. K e v i n provided excellent commentary on earlier drafts o f the  dissertation, often at very short notice. I've greatly appreciated both his patience and his instruction. I'd like to thank everyone who has been involved i n helping this dissertation come together: Sandra Norris, the Graduate Secretary o f the English Department, has always been kind and gracious in attending to my needs, even to the point o f putting her own work aside to address my concerns. Susanna Egan, former Graduate Chair, has been a wonderful source o f emotional support and encouragement. I'd like to thank Desiree, whose friendship over the years has meant very much to me; Sharon A l k e r and Karen Seleski (the "three amigos" in Seattle), whose help on the conference paper that eventually turned into Chapter 3 has been extremely valuable; Joanna and Bob, for providing a quiet place to housesit and a computer that worked (by contrast to my own); and, last but not least, the staff and my friends at Koerner's Pub, for teaching me that pool and beer do, indeed, recharge the brain cells, and for discussions o f nineteenthcentury Canadian literature, whether they wanted to talk about it or not. A n d for the many times he showed up at my door, bags o f groceries in hand, to cook my meals for me when otherwise I would have sat at my computer and forgotten to eat, for watching innumerable hours o f television while I worked, just so that we could spend some time together, for making me laugh and smile when I thought I was too stressed to do either, for wanting to be a part o f my life when so much o f my life was taken up with researching, writing, revising, and rewriting this dissertation, I'd like to thank Rob, my best friend.  1  Introduction Literary G e n r e , C a n o n F o r m a t i o n , and National Identity  A t the conclusion o f her magisterial study Bardic Nationalism:  The Romantic Novel and  the British Empire (1997), Katie Trumpener speaks o f the "flows [of population, knowledge, tastes, and goods]" as "traversfing] the British Empire . . . not only in straight lines back and forth between periphery and center but also through a large number o f thoroughly transcolonial circuits or conduits, many as old as the fact o f colonial settlement" (281). Beginning with a look at the Irish national tale and the Scottish historical novel, Trumpener's investigation o f such "flows" builds on the recovery work accomplished by other critics, among them Ina Ferris, James Buzard, Ian Duncan, and Anne Mellor, but it also branches into the investigation o f other genres and other national contexts. Neither the national tale nor the historical novel, she stipulates, is "conceivable without the investigative journeys o f the Enlightenment" (101) and the travel narratives to go with them, and she expands the geographical parameters o f her study with a reading o f Canadian historical fiction in the context she has established. A n American o f German extraction and "a child immigrant to Canada from the United States in the late 1960s" (xvii), a Germanist and comparatist, Trumpener brings a background o f personally experienced cultural migration to her work, but she also-by admission-applies to it an American's reservations about Canada's "deeply c o l o n i a l . . . mentality" and "mysterious . . . cultural practices" (xvii). M y own upbringing as the daughter o f inimigrant parents from Slovakia, with strong family ties to their place o f origin, draws on a complicated national and linguistic background, and my education i n  ' 2  Canada has incorporated some o f this country's diversity as well, by including studies in both English and French. In the following, I would like to put my own transcultural experience, both scholarly and personal, to use in order to complement certain aspects o f the work that Trumpener and others have so impressively begun. A s a result, I dwell on the trans-Atlantic origins o f the Canadian historical novel in Irish and Scottish national and historical fiction, and on the overseas links that characters in the Canadian texts maintain with their countries o f origin. In an effort to emphasize national distinctiveness and independence, nationalist projects such as the re-publication o f Canadian "classics" during the 1920s and 1960s/70s used editorial interventions, abridgements foremost among them, to reduce the European links, both literary and historical, o f such books (see Trumpener 278f; Lecker 656-71).' Here, I wish to recover these connections, not in order to initiate a neo-colonial project o f asserting Canada's cultural dependence, but to underline that it is more appropriate to speak o f interdependencies in which the recipient modifies cultural imports as well as being modified by them. This "flow" o f ideas and literary techniques also occurs within Canada itself (and, as we shall see particularly with reference to Wacousta,  within N o r t h America), and my selection o f texts speaks to the  bilingual nature o f Canadian historical fiction and the very different agenda that novels i n English and French have pursued about the same event, such as the Battle o f the Plains o f Abraham. Various narratives have been developed to suggest a reconciliation and harmonious co-existence despite these differences, but sometimes the narrativesabridgements notwithstanding-convey a completely different story from the ones suggested in their nationalist (or would it be more accurate to say, federalist?) packaging. One particularly startling example can be found in the Introduction to the 1969 N C L  edition o f W i l l i a m K i r b y ' s The Golden  Dog (1877), where the editor, Derek Crawley,  suggests that "[a]t a time when the two cultures o f Canada are making an important adjustment one to the other it is fitting that a romance by an English-born Canadian who was warmly sympathetic to French Canada should be republished," while admitting that the romance "lends itself to cutting" because it contains "whole chapters" that have "almost no relevance to the main story lines" (vii). The "main story lines," one is led to assume from Crawley's reading, are those that support the "adjustment" o f the two cultures to each other. While the first half o f this quotation even appears on the cover o f the book, anyone who reads K i r b y ' s novel even in its most abridged version w i l l be able to confirm that any adjustments are made on Britain's terms, and that the implied parallel with 1960s Canada is therefore disquieting, to say the least. This insistence on the interlocking o f European, Canadian, and inter-Canadian influences seems a l l the more appropriate since it not only applies to the nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century texts I w i l l be studying, but also anticipates, and often contrasts with, the ways in which the contemporary arts have incorporated opposing historical views and their expression. Laurie Ricou, for example, has illustrated the very different 2  ways i n which Margaret Laurence's The Diviners Episode  (1974) and Hubert Aquin's  (1965) read Benjamin West's famous painting The Death  of General  Prochain Wolfe  and  confront a crucial episode in Canadian history as they do so. Leandre Bergeron, a member o f the Parti-pris du Quebec  collective and author o f the irreverent Petit manuel  (1970) and the Dictionnaire  de la langue  quebecoise  d'histoire  (1980), offers a comic-  book reading o f the same painting in which the solemnity o f the occasion is debunked by peasant observers stammering out their res$H>nse to " L a C o n - L a c o n - L a Conquete,  4  morbleu!!," making it into an obscenity in the process, and by speech-bubbles suggesting that Wolfe is supine in the arms of his entourage because he has slipped on a banana-peel and accidentally shot himself. In all fairness, it should be added that the corresponding painting of the death of Montcalm receives a similar treatment, with bystanders conjugating the verb "mourir" (as in "je meurs, tu meurs, i l meurt," and so on), and pointing meaningfully at each other while doing so (Bergeron 12). More recently, viewers i n Quebec did not always share the enthusiasm o f English-Canadian viewers for the C B C / S R C series Canada:  A People's  History.  For example, Christian Dufour's  review describes the series as a one-sided representation o f "le cote bienveillant du pouvoir anglais-canadien a regard des Canadiens francais et de leurs descendants quebecois."  3  Recognizing the literary manipulation o f cultural icons like West's painting requires close attention to the texts in which they appear. While my topic by definition requires a broad historical sweep and acknowledgement of the large ideological and literary developments that emerge from a study of texts that, between them, span more than a hundred years, I am interested in developing further what M a r i l y n Butler has called a "particularized historical method" (25) or what Ina Ferris has named "a kind o f concrete microanalysis" (6). It is only through the detailed work that both of these critics have i n mind that the complex interplay o f genre and ideology that characterizes historical novel and national tale (and the many genres subsumed in them) can be understood. Because of the ways in which the majority of the texts I have chosen periodically re-enter the academic canon together with updated ideological agendas, much o f my analysis in the fojlowmgis by necessity influenced by post-colonial theories  5  and cultural studies. However, I emphatically agree with Janet Sorensen that postcolonial theories i n particular are not sufficiently attuned to "a more nuanced reading o f the internal differences within . . . amorphous entities o f Gael, Scot, and Briton" and her assessment holds equally true for Canada (8). Sorensen's approach is based on historical 4  linguistics; my o w n is a close study o f selected literary tropes found i n the texts I have chosen for discussion. If, in the following, readers find my readings sometimes excessively detailed, I ask them to bear with me, because it is this approach that has allowed me to disentangle some o f the complex narrative layering that characterizes these books, and the ideological "adjustments" that go with them. In adapting Sorensen's program for her own investigation o f "the Grammar o f Empire," I too wish to "highlight . . . the contradictions i n the cultural productions o f the British nation and empire and the identities o f the men and women who lived in and under them, [and thus] move analysis beyond a structuralist binary o f self/other" (9). I have chosen to focus on the travel and marriage tropes because they are particularly apt for an analysis o f writing which is preoccupied with unions both personal and political, and with the "footwork" that goes into bringing them about. The investigative journeys o f Arthur Young and Samuel Johnson not only provide structural models from which national tales and historical novels i n Ireland and Scotland were able to derive itineraries attuned to suit their own program best, but also present researchand hint at each author's attitudes towards the cultures he investigated in a printed form that fictional characters can be made to discuss. Because o f the size o f the country, no travel report on Canada exists that would have assumed quite the same encompassing function as Young's and Johnson's, but Haliburton's work comes close, especially as, ironically  6  and symptomatically, he provided the research that allowed both English- and FrenchCanadian novelists to reconstruct events in Maritime history, such as the Deportation o f the Acadians, when other important records had been lost because o f such events. [n.p.]While travel permits an inventory o f the geographical, historical, and cultural territory to be drawn up, the marriage trope alludes to the instance when the conflicting proprietary claims over the territory are being laid to rest, as well as implying that the amalgamation o f disparate ethnic groups in political unions is a legitimate, equable, and affectionate arrangement between consenting adults. A t the same time, however, both journey and marriage also come with a rich repertoire o f potential catastrophes, including abortive, failed or sterile marriages, murders by jealous mistresses or jilted suitors, travelers lost in bogs or breaking through ice, and families torn apart by forced migrations. Indeed, at one point in the writing o f my thesis, I described my weekend reading as preoccupied with "three failed marriages, one fallen woman, and a dead baby named Canada." Such elements bring the subconscious horrors o f the gothic novel into the famously educational narratives o f historical novel and national tale, and the excesses o f gothicism expose the areas where the conciliatory plot is unable to contain the strains pulling against it. The understanding o f what constitutes a "conciliatory" plot or a "strain" is apt to change with different national configurations as well, but the travel and marriage tropes are capable o f accommodating a wide range o f such changes precisely because the concepts they represent and the participants in them are not particularly stable either. Both tropes have insistently provided textual and ideological sites in which models o f imperial cohesiveness can be pieced together and taken apart, and i n which, to push the metaphor a little further, ruin and monument can  7 exist together, and often do. It is not surprising that one o f the persistent motifs linked to both traveler and marriage in the novels under discussion is a structure in the literal sense of the word, namely the "big house," its decline or willful destruction, its restoration to often dubious splendour, the paths leading to, around, and away from it, and its restoration (see Kreilkamp). It would, as a matter o f fact, be very surprising if, i n the books I have chosen for discussion, stability were achieved with anything like ease or confidence. They are inhabited by characters whose ethnic, political, and linguistic identities are often difficult to make out. Repeatedly, individuals initiating a conversation with others have to clear up several misunderstandings first. In Jean M c l l w r a i t h ' s A Diana  of Quebec  (1912), for  example, Captain Mathews, the narrator o f the story, corrects Admiral Nelson by stating that he is not an Englishman but a Scot with httle personal animosity against the French, and Mathews also informs Nelson that General Haldimand is "not French-[but] Swiss, from one o f the French cantons, and a Protestant, therefore detested by a l l good Catholic Canadians" (29). Printed topographical guides prove to be as unreliable as the characters who produce them: maps are o f limited use i n places where trails are often a rumour rather than a certainty, where bogs, ice, and monstrous tides make for treacherous journeys, and where map-makers cannot keep up with the changes in the ownership o f a territory and its place-names. Although surprisingly few o f the books I am looking atv;  feature maps (presumably because of the cost involved i n reproducing them), some describe maps and most track in almost obsessive detail the lay-out of territory, especially the few cities involved, together with a recital of the names o f streets and buildings: The Golden  Dog  and A Diana  of Quebec  in particular come to mind. In the latter, for  8  example, Captain Mathews offers a rather more voluble response than required by the situation to the question which direction M i s s Simpson might have taken: "[sjeveral ways. She may have gone round by the Sault au Matelot, and may be coming up by the Canoterie H i l l . She may be going on further towards Palace Gate; or she may have turned to the right at the foot o f Mountain H i l l with the intention o f climbing the footpath that leads from Champlain Street to the Cove Fields" (14). One function o f this precision is surely to provide a kind o f animated guidebook promoting cities, like Quebec City, that have retained much o f their original design and therefore serve as a kind o f concrete history lesson, but another is to trace, for at least one moment i n history, a mnemonic o f a place that has repeatedly been rendered unstable by competing proprietary claims. One o f the challenges in working on the historical novel is to remain alert to the ways in which the interplay o f historical fiction and historiography regularly creates uncertainties o f its own, especially i f a work is marketed primarily for entertainment or i f it can be safely assumed that certain historical allusions w i l l be understood by a contemporary educated reader without explanatory notes to accompany them. A 1912 reader o f historical fiction published the same year (not to mention one reading i n 1800), however, w i l l be attuned to different information from a reader in 2002. In conducting my research I learnt quickly enough not to ascribe what I perceived as certain excesses, too quickly to literary tropes, as the historical truth frequently turned out to be stranger than the literary conventions developed to contain it. For example, in A Diana  Quebec,  of  the two youngest daughters o f the Riedesel family are called "America" and  "Canada." "Canada" dies in infancy while "America," as we are told through flashforward, thrives into adulthood. Already busy developing an entire theory based on this  9  plot-line and finding the implied allegory a little gauche, I located the following information: Baron Friedrich Adolphus von Riedesel ( 1 7 3 8 - 1 8 0 0 ) was a LieutenantGeneral under the Duke o f Brunswick, who provided George  III  with more than  7000  soldiers to help subdue the American Revolution. H i s wife Frederica, a highly accomplished and spirited woman, accompanied h i m into military action with three young daughters, o f whom the oldest was four. A fourth daughter, "America," was born while the family was in the American colonies, and a fifth, "Canada," when the Riedesels were stationed in Sorel, Quebec. "Canada" survived only a short while, while "America" returned with her parents and siblings to the family's German estates. The confusion continues into contemporary historiography. Currently, American, Canadian, and German history all claim the Riedesels for themselves, and American scholarship even includes the Baron among "famous Americans," a particular stretch o f the imagination considering that his regiment fought the American rebels (see "Baron Friedrich Adolph Riedesel," Famous Americans Home Page). Partly in response to the layered identities that historical circumstances have brought about, the authors o f the novels under discussion have frequently chosen narrative points-of-view that highlight the idiosyncrasies o f the material and that proclaim just how difficult it may be to arrive at any reliable "truth": among these perspectives are Thady Quirk's and Captain Mathews's first-person narratives, both-for different reasons-seriously compromised by their lack o f understanding, Horatio M — ' s letters to an unresponsive friend, and Bourassa's and Aubert de Gaspe's causeries that jarringly exist side-by-side with recitals o f devastating historical events. These highly specific and unreliable voices drawsattention to texts that are every bit as amorphous as  10  the matters they describe. Propped up by prefaces, postfaces, notes, and glossaries, several proclaim even in the subtitle that the main title cannot be relied upon to convey the whole truth. Castle  Rackrent  (1800), for example, is subtitled " A n Hibernian Tale  taken from facts and from the manners of the Irish squires before the year 1782," that is, with a clarification that the text to be expected is a sociological and geographical study o f sorts, and not merely the gothic tale that the main title may suggest. However, although a glossary has been added presumably to strengthen the "scientific" nature of the study, the tone o f some o f the entries is too casual to confirm the impression. Describing a "willaluh" or "lamentation over the dead," the "Editor" indicates that "[a] full account o f the . . . Irish funeral song . . . may be found in the fourth volume of the transactions o f the Royal Irish Academy. For the advantage of lazy readers, who would rather read a page than walk a yard, and from compassion, not to say sympathy, with their infirmity, the Editor transcribes the following passages etc." (Edgeworth 102). Nor does this generic hybridity stop with the way the text is constituted. A s mentioned earlier, several o f these books have been published in abridged versions, to suit specific ideological and/or educational purposes. The resulting textual absences in, for example, The Wild Irish  Girl  (1806), Wacousta  (1832), or The Golden  Dog  have, in  turn, generated new texts, some in the area o f literary and cultural criticism, some in other genres, such as drama, all o f which are meant to fill the gap or "destruction" that the omissions have wrought. A s a result, reading these novels with care, one sometimes wonders what exactly is new i n "historiographic metafiction," a genre that has been posited as an invention o f the recent past (see Hutcheon), with the claim that "[the mimetic connection between art and life] has changed. It no longer operates entirely at  11  the level o f product  alone, that is, at the level o f the representation of a seemingly  unmediated world, but instead functions on the level o f p r o c e s s too" (61). It is not clear from this quotation when this change is supposed to have occurred, but there is ample evidence that the novels included in my study are not finished "products" even now, and that "the discursive context o f the writing and reading o f the text" determines nineteenth and early-twentieth-century historical novels as strongly as it affects contemporary metafictions.  5  Miranda Burgess has pointed out that the romance is "a hybrid or  conglomerate genre [which] sustained internal dynamics and changing angles o f confrontation with political economic intertexts," and she concludes that "the resulting dialectic of recognition and transformation in its relation to its readers . . . make it uniquely capable of conveying more than one conception of nationhood" (British 6).  Fiction  A n equally strong case can be made for the historical novel, which subsumes the  romance with numerous other genres in its capacious textual body. M y intention here is by no means to prove that the nineteenth-century historical novel was post-modernist avant  la lettre  and a forerunner of historiographic metafiction, but to insist that the  innovations that the latter claims for itself in both technique and philosophy are based on an unacceptably simplistic understanding o f the older texts.  6  Reading these books with some care also reminds us that globalism, including the social inequalities that permit it to function, has its origins in imperialism and that the systems o f communication enabling the operation o f the latter predate the systems o f electronic communication that make globalism possible. The trajectories traversed by some of these characters (as well as by some o f their authors) are enormous even by contemporary standards, and communication was developed to a sufficiently  12  sophisticated level even in mid-eighteenth century to necessitate drastic measures when they needed to be disrupted, as in the case o f the deportation and dispersal o f the Acadians. In ,4 Diana of Quebec, Captain Mathews spends much o f his time copying out letters that must be taken to the far corners o f the Empire before the mail dispatched by agents o f a rival nation gets there first: July the 2nd, 1782, was one o f the warmest days o f a warm season, and never had my daily duties seemed more arduous. Since early morning I had sat in the Chateau library, interpreting and replying to documents in cypher, writing duplicates or triplicates o f letters to commanders at different posts, or to Indian agents throughout the country. Every dispatch, whether to England or to H i s Majesty's representative i n N e w York, had to be copied more than once so that different routes might be tried for its delivery, and the danger o f capture lessened, by land or sea. Our difficulties in getting letters were even greater than those we encountered i n the sending o f them, and we were thankful at times for news o f the outside world obtained by'some such windfall as a package o f rebel newspapers hidden in a tree, intended for other hands than ours, you may be sure. (34) The exclusiveness and human cost o f such communication networks are also readily apparent, not only in the story o f Baroness Riedesel, who has to follow her husband across the battle-fields o f North America, three little girls i n tow and a fourth on the way, but also in the work o f the "Indian runners," whose knowledge o f the terrain makes  13  delivery o f the letters possible and who are treated with consistent condescension in o  return for their troubles. It goes without saying the "Indian runners" would have been able to tell a very different tale o f nationhood. Although First Nations people are routinely described as either noble or ignoble savages, these books also convey to the contemporary reader an impressive record of the communications networks that predate the arrival o f the Europeans and which continue to exist alongside them. Trying to rid himself o f Caroline St. Castin, who is part Abenaquis, Bigot ruminates: "[b] ut to send her away into the wilderness was not easy. A matter which in France would excite the gossip and curiosity of a league or two o f neighbourhood would be carried on the tongues o f Indians and voyageurs in the wilds of North America for thousands o f miles" (369). A l l o f these books, however, are remarkable both for the ways in which they resolutely restrict their thinking about nationhood to a very limited set o f contenders and equally resolutely exclude any groups whose own claims might distract from these configurations. The presence, i n Castle Canadiens,  Rackrent,  of the Jewess Jessica Rackrent, and, i n Les  Anciens  of the mulatto girl Lisette, bought by Captain d'Haberville at the age o f four,  underlines the fact that the authors were only too aware of the presence o f such groups. Nevertheless, the difference constituted by this presence is determinedly absorbed into the narrative of two or, at the most, three groups whose claims are perceived as dorninant. If, in the following, I have chosen not to include a detailed discussion o f such figures, I have done so i n order to keep my research manageable, but I remain aware throughout that the study o f "complex and supple responses to cultural domination" (Sorensen 8) that  14  I have begun w i l l in future need to be greatly expanded in order to be complex and supple. L i k e all recent work in this area, my own corrects the literary genealogy established by Georg Lukacs in his influential study The Historical  Novel  (1937), in  which he ascribes to Scott a singular place in literary history: singular, because he was the sole inventor of the historical novel, a genre without literary precedent; and symptomatic, for-in Lukacs's account-Scott single-handedly invented a genre that had a profound influence on the realist tradition of the European novel. Lukacs dismisses "second and third-rate writers," namely A n n Radcliffe and others, "who were supposed to be important forerunners o f [Scott]." A comparison between Scott and his contemporaries, he avers, "brings us not a jot nearer to understanding what was new in Scott's art, that is i n his historical novel" (30). In opposition to Lukacs, I proceed with the assumption that allegedly "second and third-rate authors" like M a r i a Edgeworth and Sydney Owenson have been restored to their rightful places. I discuss Castle  Rackrent  by Edgeworth and The Wild Irish  Girl  by  Owenson because they set fictional standards in describing the recovery o f national identities. Both are novels that have already received extensive critical attention but about which also much remains to be said within the approach I have chosen, especially i f they are discussed in conjunction with English- and French-Canadian texts. Edgeworth and Owenson are followed by Walter Scott's Waverley  (1814) because it focuses on the  '45 and its consequences, events that were to have repercussions throughout the British possessions. Scott's phenomenal success at home, throughout Europe and in the new world was, towards the end of the nmeteeiijii century, followed by almost complete  15  popular and critical neglect. H e is now undergoing a re-assessment, ironically, it seems, in response to the assertive presence o f the women-writers Lukacs so summarily dismissed. Next, I discuss John Richardson's Wacousta,  a novel that takes the  consequences of the Jacobite uprisings to Canada and which has repeatedly re-entered the literary canon, each time under a different ideological flag. The British Conquest of France is at the centre o f Aubert de Gaspe's Les Anciens together with Napoleon Bourassa's Jacques  et Marie  Canadiens  New  (1863) which,  (1865), broadens the discussion into  francophone writing and the very different perspectives it offers on events that are also discussed i n English-Canadian historical novels, such as W i l l i a m K i r b y ' s The Dog  and Jean Mcllwraith's A Diana  of Quebec.  Golden  M y list contains books that at one time  or another were or still are successful, often phenomenally so, but with Bourassa and M c l l w r a i t h it also features works that have received virtually no attention but that I believe are worth another look. The historical events covered by these books extend from the 1715 Rebellion in Scotland to the American War of Independence, and the Canadian response to it. The publication history of these books spans the years 18001912,  but because of the ways in which some of these books have come and gone  alongside developments in nationalist sentiment and academic institutionahzation, their textual and reception history extends into the present. In paying attention to historical fiction written in both English and French, my discussion not only modifies some o f the assumptions that have been made in the discussion o f so-called "historiographic metafiction," but it also continues the work begun in comparative Canadian literature in the 1970s. A t the time, studies like Ronald Sutherland's Second  Image  (1976) and Clement Moisan's L 'Age de la  litterature  16  canadienne (1969) perceived themselves, openly or not, as providing a literary argument in favour o f federalism, but their studies tended to dwell on the similarities between individual works and authors without paying sufficient attention to the historical and cultural specificities that produced them. Research involving literature from both anglophone and francophone Canadian writing remains surprisingly rare. M y study w i l l help to address this imbalance by using a perspective which opens the comparison beyond the bi-cultural model into larger cultural contexts. This approach w i l l also help to fill a lacuna in Trumpener's discussion, which addresses the problems produced by some o f the English translations o f francophone works, but which does not, with any thoroughness, consider the French side o f the equation. Organizing my discussion has proven to be something o f a challenge. Proceeding book by book was not effective, as it produced too many redundancies. A thematic discussion tended to blur the literary and historical chronologies that needed to be kept clear in order to disentangle the sequence o f events on both sides o f the Atlantic and within Canada itself. Finally, a chronological approach raised the question o f exactly what chronology I wanted to highlight as some o f these books came and went with every major nationalist phase in Canadian history. I finally decided to produce an outline which accommodated all o f these forms o f organization, by taking the books through a version o f each i n turn. I therefore begin with a description o f my corpus, arranged i n chronological order o f publication, with special emphasis on the often colourful reception history o f these books. I follow up with a chapter each on the travel and marriage tropes, in which I highlight individual novels rather than striving to canvas them all. Because one o f the purposes o f this study is to illustrate how one group's organic concept o f  nationhood may be based on another group's "derangement," I have also attempted to interweave a narrative that abides by the traditional connectives o f argumentative prose (transitions, introductions, and conclusions) with one that, as one o f my advisors pointed out to me, worked with "vignettes" or "snapshots," in order to underline the disjointed nature o f history and the stories told about it.  Although Lecker has begun an analysis o f the N e w Canadian Library series, much remains to be done in assessing the extraordinary role it has played in the development o f Canadian literature as an academic discipline. See Lecker, "The Canonization o f Canadian Literature," 656-71. Walter Scott's suggestion, in the "Postscript" to Waverley, that a span of "sixty years" is necessary to separate a reading audience from the historical events portrayed is important in this context. When Scott gave his subtitle as 'Tis Sixty Years Since to Waverley, he was drawing attention to the remarkable transformations o f Scottish culture and society since 1745, which rendered Scotland almost unrecognizable from its earlier history: [tjhere is no European nation which, in the course of half a century or little more, has undergone so complete a change as this kingdom o f Scotland. The effects of the insurrection o f 1745 . . . commenced this innovation. The gradual influx o f wealth and extension o f commerce have since united to render the present people o f Scotland a class o f beings as different from their grandfathers as the existing English are from those o f Queen Elizabeth's time. (492) A l o n g with the rapid transformation o f eighteenth-century Scotland, Scott also draws attention to an important dimension of historical perception, namely the temporal distance required to make possible the recuperation (in literature as in society) o f transformative events in history. (For a theorization o f "historical distance" in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries in Britain, namely in works by Scott and the philosopher and historian David Hume, see M a r k Phillips, Society and Sentiment, esp. 33-59). Recently, Canadian author Wayne Johnston (author o f The Colony of Unrequited Dreams [1998]) encountered difficulties in fictionalizing people from recent Canadian history, such as Joe Smallwood, premier of Newfoundland. Revealingly, Johnston encountered no such difficulties in the United States, where Smallwood was simply read as another eccentric character from the exotic land of Newfoundland. See Gessell; Murphy; and Johnston. 1  2  See Dufour, " L a manipulation de n o t r e h i ^ f ^ e : suite et fin." Le Devoir. 31 aout 2001. For the response to Dufour, and for more reason, positive and negative, to the series, see  3  18  the S R C (Station Radio-Canada) website: Revue de presse <http://radio-canada.ca/ histoire/index.html.> Sorensen challenges Trumpener's insistence on the "identification o f origins, influences, and traditions" as "reproduc[ing] rather than abnegat[ing] the imperatives o f national rhetoric formalized in a national canon, a cultural formation w h i c h . . . is closely tied to linguistic and literary pedagogy" (26). There has been no recent, comparative book-length study o f English- and FrenchCanadian historical fiction. The most recent work by an English-Canadian that deals with both literatures is Dennis Duffy's Sounding the Iceberg: An Essay on Canadian Historical Fiction (1986) which, as its title implies, represents a brief overview of some of the major themes that have preoccupied English- and French-Canadian historical novelists from 1832 (the publication-date o f Wacousta) to 1983. The strength of Duffy's book lies in the fact that it avoids the strong ideological biases that characterize much English-Canadian scholarship o f historical fiction from the 1960s and into the 1990s. In particular, I have in mind here Michael Hurley's essay "Wacousta as Trickster" (1991), a comparison o f Wacousta with the Trickster figure from aboriginal mythology through the lens o f Jungian psychoanalysis. Hurley's reading includes citations from Carlos Castaneda, and John Lennon and Y o k o Ono. Wacousta here figures as a synecdoche o f Canadian literature and of the Canadian psyche, both of which stand for "a fundamental engagement with the totality o f life. The darkness must be affirmed as well as the light, energy as well as order" (77). Instead, Duffy argues for the necessity o f examining English- and French-Canadian historical fiction because "[r]emote as the cultures may appear to one another, they share preoccupations common to national literatures . . . [that is,] the imaginative representation o f nationalist ideologies" (v). Duffy's study is limited, however, by its failure to treat the two literatures comparatively, a limitation to which Duffy himself draws attention when he admits that he "do[es] not discuss the unexpected parallels between literatures seemingly so diverse" (v). Carole Gerson's impressive study of nineteenth-century reading in Canada (1989), including the historical novel, deals only with English-Canadian fiction, as does Herb W y i l e ' s recent Speculative Fictions: Contemporary Canadian Novelists and the Writing of History (2002). In French Canada, critics tend to focus on French-Canadian fiction, although, when they do look at nineteenth-century English-Canadian historical novels, they tend to focus on K i r b y ' s The Golden Dog (Lernire, L e Moine, Hayne). The most impressive study of the nineteenthcentury French-Canadian historical novel remains Maurice Lemire's Les Grands Themes nationalistes du roman historique canadien-franqais (1970), a detailed examination o f the roots o f contemporary Quebec nationalism in the nineteenth-century historical novel. There is an infinitely greater range of reference works available in French that examine in detail the intersections between the emergence o f historical fiction and the development of national consciousness, and which demonstrate French Canadians' more staunchly preservationist and historicist approach to literary production. ( M u c h of this work has been overseen by Lemire. See, for example, Lemire, Dictionnaire des oeuvres litteraires du Quebec, vol. 1. Des origines a 1900 [1980] and La Vie litteraire au Quebec [1996]). The pessimistic views o f educators about the public's interest in Canadian history notwithstanding, there has recently been a renewed interest in Canadian historical fiction, apparent in the publication j ^ s c l f e e last decade of, for example, novels by Jack Hodgins,  4  5  6  19  Guy Vanderhaeghe, George Stefiler, Michael Crummey, and Michael Ondaatje. The assessment o f their place in Canadian literature requires, however, that the emergence and evolution o f nineteenth-century historical fiction be assessed first. The extent o f the letter-writing necessary to keep an empire functioning seems to have provided something o f a set-piece. For example, i n The Golden Dog, Governor de la Galissonniere is seen at his desk: [t]he table was loaded with letters, memoranda and bundles o f papers tied up in official style. Despatches o f royal ministers, bearing the broad seal o f France. Reports from officers o f posts far and near in N e w France lay mingled together with silvery strips o f the inner bark o f the birch, painted with hieroglyphics, giving accounts o f war parties on the eastern frontier and in the far west, signed by the totems o f Indian chiefs in alliance with France. There was a newly-arrived parcel o f letters from the bold, enterprising Sieur de Verendrye, who was exploring the distant waters o f the Saskatchewan, and the land o f the Blackfeet, and many a missive from missionaries, giving account o f w i l d regions which remain yet almost a terra incognita to the government which rules over them. (361). 7  O n the depiction o f Native people in the literature o f this period, see, for example, Nancy M . Goslee. 8  20  Chapter One: T h e A u t h o r s , T h e i r Books, and T h e i r Reception  This chapter pays particular attention to the intersections between gender, history, and the critical reception o f historical fiction in Britain and Canada. In aiming to introduce a lesser-known culture to a metropolitan reading audience, all o f the writers that I examine take as their subject matter major historical events that not only allegorize cultural encounter, but also represent history from the perspective o f the colonized. Thus, The Wild Irish Girl asserts the ancient origins and nobility o f Irish culture in order to challenge dominant misconceptions about Ireland as primitive, ridiculous or even dangerous (see Ferris, "Cultural Encounter," 293). A n d Jacques et Marie enacts a kind o f literary revenge on the British by portraying them as the Acadians' moral and social inferiors, thereby attributing the deportation o f the Acadians to British expansionism and, beyond that, to Britain's corrupt national character (see Lemire, Les Grands Themes, 101-06; Duffy 7). O f the novels studied here, most envision the identity o f colonized cultures in terms that we would now identify as cultural nationalist. A s Burgess explains in her account o f Anglo-Irish novelists Edgeworth, Owenson, and Regina Roche, these writers assert that "the nation ' i s ' an organic, prepolitical body, bound together by customs and sentiments and by oral and written traditions that constitute a national culture recognizable by them and preserved by preserving them" ("Violent Translations" 35). Cultural nationalism was put to various ideological purposes (for example, it was evoked to portray intercultural union or to posit its impossibility) and, often within the  21  bounds o f a single novel, like Les Anciens  Canadiens  and Waverley,  arguments for  political quietism are challenged by subtexts o f cultural difference. The instability o f the cultural-nationalist plot extends from the content of the novels themselves to their reception, where cultural encounter between colonizer and colonized plays itself out i n the complex network o f gender and social biases inextricably bound up in the generic history o f the novel itself. A s Ferris explains, in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries in Britain, the "contemporary . . . novel [was] consistently situated in a context o f generic decline from the great (and male) tradition o f the eighteenth century" (see "Waverley"  297; and Achievement,  esp. 79-104). Thus,  because the novel was seen by contemporary critics as largely the domain o f the female authors of popular romances and novels of manners, Scott—when Waverley  was  published—was applauded for having restored "to contemporary fiction something o f the full, broad power o f novelistic representation that the dominance o f female writing and female reading ha[d] threatened" (Ferris, " Waverley,"  298). While Owenson was vilified  by her male (and female) contemporaries for transgressing the bounds o f acceptable womanly behaviour in writing a cultural nationalist text like The Wild Irish  Girl,  Scott, in  turn, was more ideologically acceptable to metropolitan readers, largely because his novel combined romantic nationalism with historical development to posit a pan-British vision o f intercultural harmony. The gendered reception o f the novel carries over into French Canada, where, as Maurice Lemire explains, the novel was considered "par ses detracteurs comme un genre sans regie aucune, done sans valeur reelle, qui ne vise qu'a distraire le lecteur" (La Vie 498). A s a result, in the opinion o f poet Octave Cremazie, the novel is a secondary genre to poetry, and has little social or moral value: "le roman,  22  quelque religieux q u ' i l soit, est toujours un genre secondaire. O n s'en sert, comme du sucre pour couvrir les pilules, lorsqu'on veut faire accepter certaines idees, bonnes ou mauvaises" (Condemine 90). In the post-Durham era, and especially following the publication of Francois-Xavier Garneau's precedent-setting Histoire decouverte  jusqu'a  nos jours  du Canada  depuis  la  (1845-48), the French-Canadian novel became preoccupied  with historiographical revision, to the degree that, in 1866, poet and literary critic HenriRaymond Casgrain declared that the new nationalist "mouvement litteraire en Canada," which derives from this spirit o f revisionism, confirms the existence o f a recognizable French-Canadian nationhood (see Lemire, La Vie, 526). historical discourse lent to a novel like Waverley tradition, where Wacousta,  1  The masculine authority that  has formed English Canada's literary  with its focus on Canadian history from the perspective of the  British military, has been recuperated as an important Canadian novel in almost every nationalist period in Canada's literary and political history, while A Diana  of Quebec,  in  turn, with its more domestic concerns about child-rearing, has fallen almost entirely from critical discussion. This chapter is organized chronologically and geographically. It 2  begins, in order of publication, with the Irish novels o f Edgeworth and Owenson and moves, through Scott and Scotland, to English and French Canada. The chronological organization of the chapter coincides with its larger purpose, to trace the formal and thematic influences on Canadian novelists to the novels o f Scott, Owenson, and Edgeworth.  23  M a r i a E d g e w o r t h , Castle Rackrent: An Hibernian Tale taken from facts and from the manners of the Irish squires before the year 1782 (1800)  Edgeworth's first and most successful novel, Castle  Rackrent,  was published in the year  o f Ireland's legislative Union with Britain. In her memoirs, the author points out that Thady Quirk, the narrator o f the story, is drawn from life; however, in her Preface, she insists that all o f her characters (namely Thady, an "illiterate old steward," and "the drunken Sir Patrick, the litigious Sir Murtagh, the fighting Sir K i t , and the slovenly Sir Condy" whose stories he tells) are stereotypes (4). She reminds readers that whatever might have been realist in 1782, the year when the novel is set, may bear no relation to anything still existing i n 1800. Nevertheless, the book was widely acclaimed as a faithful and groundbreaking portrayal o f a region and its inhabitants. Edgeworth's fictional memoir o f Thady Quirk, the steward to three generations o f the Rackrent family, attracted the favourable attention o f prominent members o f political and literary society. In a letter to his father-in-law, Richard L o v e l l Edgeworth proudly declared that "[w]e hear it from good authority that the king was much pleased with Castle Rack Rent - he rubbed his hands and said what, what - 1 know something now o f my Irish subjects."  3  Walter Scott, in his "Postscript" to Waverley,  acknowledges  Edgeworth's influence on his own portrayal o f the Highlanders: "[i]t has been my object to describe these persons, not by caricatured and exaggerated use o f the national dialect, but by their habits, manners, and feelings; so as in some degree to emulate the admirable Irish portraits drawn by M i s s Edgeworth" (493). Edgeworth visited Scott at Abbotsford in 1823, and he came to see her in Ireland two years later. She was lionized by the  24  literary world o f her day, and on an 1803 visit to London was introduced to Byron, Sydney Smith (who had founded the Edinburgh  Review  with Henry Brougham and  Francis Jeffrey the year before), the Scottish dramatist and poet Joanna Baillie, and Henry Crabb Robinson, famous diarist, letter-writer, correspondent for the Times,  and  founder of both University College London and the Athenaeum Club. Tourists traveled through Ireland, Castle  Rackrent  in hand, and a visit to Edgeworthstown became  something o f a literary pilgrimage.  4  While Edgeworth received enthusiastic praise from contemporary metropolitan critics for her "realist" representations o f the Irish, she was negatively reviewed by nationalist critics who found her understanding o f Irish national character defective. Members of the Irish Revival had little use for her. Padraic C o l u m (1915), for example, compares her to Turgenev (who was an admirer o f Edgeworth's writing) and finds her wanting: "she belongs to the settlers in Ireland, and she has no notion what Irish culture could mean" (Colum 113). Stephen G w y n n echoes Colum's views in 1936 when he accuses her o f not being i n "full national sympathy with Ireland or even with Ireland's rights to be considered a nation" (54). While Edgeworth's work was being expelled from the canon of Irish literature for its "lukewarm" (Colum) response to nationalist issues, it appears, however, to have remained something o f a tourist commodity without much interruption. A recent article in the Irish  Times,  in its coverage o f a conference at the  Royal Irish Academy entitled "Ireland after the Union - A Cultural Desert?" (2001), professes surprise-as newspaper coverage o f academic events tends to do-at the revelation that Ireland, after the Union, was not a cultural desert. Edgeworth and other members o f her famous family are mentioned on the homepage o f Edgeworthstown,  25  where references to Castle  Rackrent  exist cheek-by-jowl with information on pubs and  leisure activities in the area, and which advertises the " M a r i a Edgeworth Literary Weekend" with short-story and poetry workshops. Her name alone is sometimes 5  sufficient to signify an "authentic" and traditional Irish character, as in the Irish Tourist Board's website, which credits her with being the first to deal specifically with "Irish themes."  6  Like the Canadian government, which considers Canadian culture an  important export article (and includes International Canadian Studies in the portfolio o f the Department o f Foreign Affairs and International Trade), the website o f Ireland's Department o f Foreign Affairs features a comprehensive essay on Edgeworth along with Yeats, Joyce, and Beckett. The marketing o f Edgeworth's name even appears on 7  commercial websites, where her writing has been removed from its novelistic context and repackaged as witty anagrams and "creative quotations."  8  Despite her instant success, however, Edgeworth was, from the beginning, beset by the typical difficulties of women writers of the time, and the condescension extended to her because o f her gender becomes frequently linked to her alleged inability to give Irish nationalism a sufficiently assertive voice. Castle  Rackrent  was published  anonymously, as was often the case with women's writing, and later works are careful to acknowledge her father's influence on her work. Throughout her writing career Richard Lovell Edgeworth, who encouraged her enthusiastically in her endeavours, also maintained extensive editorial control over her work. O n his death in 1817, he left a letter requesting her to complete his memoirs. Edgeworth was "morbidly aware o f [his daughter's] ugliness" (Teets 8) and strenuously attempted to find her a suitor. In a tacit arrangement o f mutual dependency, Edgeworth continually provided M a r i a with the  26  necessary confidence to write (although he may have had something to do with her lack of confidence to begin with), and she overcame her insecurities and blinding headaches to act as his intellectual companion and devoted executor. The same split between approval for her accomplishments as a writer and shortcomings as a woman soon enough affected assessment o f her work (see esp. Ferris 65-69). While early critics like John Wilson Croker applauded Edgeworth for purging the novel o f its romantic content, praising her for her "accurate discrimination of the various classes o f Irish society," later 9  commentators faulted her for her detachment. John Ward, writing in the Review  Edinburgh  found, for example, that she assigned too much "to the head and too little to the  heart" (307), an assessment echoed in the London  Magazine,  which criticized her intellect  for being "unaccompanied with any redeeming qualities o f the heart."  10  N o w that  Edgeworth's close collaboration with her father was a known fact, he—rather than "our ingenious and lively authoress"-was criticized for "givfing] his paternal imprimatur . . . to such palpable and dangerous misrepresentations of public character and public principle."  11  Castle  Rackrent  went into five English editions in Edgeworth's lifetime before  being included in the Collected Works, the first appearing in 1832-33, the second in 1893.  But the work received little sustained critical attention until the 1970s, when it  was rediscovered by feminist scholars. Gilbert and Gubar included it in their groundbreaking study The Madwoman Century  Literary  of the Novel:  Imagination  100 Good  Women  in the Attic:  The Woman  Writer  and the  Nineteenth-  (1979). Dale Spender, who published her survey Writers  Before  Jane  Austen  Mothers  (1986), complained that "I  deeply regret the omission of M a r i a Edgeworth in my own literary education. . . . I would  27  dearly love to have a course on Maria Edgeworth's novels, but predictably most o f her work is not in print" (290-91). She declared that "to omit [Edgeworth] from consideration o f the rise o f the novel is to distort the literary records beyond measure" (287). Spender made Edgeworth's books more readily available by overseeing the "Mothers of the N o v e l " reprint series which included Edgeworth's Belinda, and Helen.  Both Belinda  and Patronage  author of the feminist classic Patriarchal Women  Novelists  to 1850  Patronage,  were introduced by E v a Figes, novelist and Attitudes  (1970) and o f Sex and  Subterfuge:  (1982) which, like Spender's study, were efforts to recover  "lost" women authors. When Spender was looking for editions o f Edgeworth's books to teach in her classes, all she could find was the 1976 compound volume of Castle Absentee  Rackrent  and The  (290-91). B y contrast, twenty-five years later, one finds Edgeworth's work  mentioned in dozens of university syllabi from Britain to Ireland, and from North America to Spender's country o f birth, Australia. There are scholarly editions available, including online versions o f Castle  Rackrent  and Belinda  i n the Celebration o f Women  Writers project. If there is any question about Edgeworth's canonical status, the forthcoming Pickering and Chatto edition o f Castle  Rackrent,  part o f a larger series  edited by M a r i l y n Butler, as well as the reissue in 1997 of the Collected  Works,  Pickering and Chatto, puts them to rest. The Pickering and Chatto edition of Rackrent  also by Castle  put, on its jacket cover, Edgeworth's importance i n initiating "the national or  regional novel," and describes the extent of her influence on the formation of the nineteenth-century historical novel and o f contemporary post-colonial fiction. The influential criticism o f Ferris and Trumpener on the historical novel and the national tale  28  has had much to do with removing Edgeworth and others from the place o f obscurity to which George Lukacs had assigned them, and with linking the feminist and nationalist arguments as inseparable from each other.  Sydney Owenson, The Wild Irish Girl: A National Tale (1806)  While Castle Rackrent was acclaimed, when it first appeared, for the realism with which it brought a specific Irish region to life, Sydney Owenson's The Wild Irish Girl concentrated on the ancient nobility o f Irish culture by allegorizing the legislative U n i o n o f Ireland and Britain through the marriage o f a harp-playing Celtic princess, Glorvina o f Inismore, and Horatio M — , the English son o f her absentee landlord. Response to the book exceeded that to Castle Rackrent.  Going through seven editions in two years, The  Wild Irish Girl was a sensation, and instantly spawned a fashion craze. Dublin jewelers and drapers were kept busy meeting the demand for bodkins and mantles " o f native correctness" as worn by Glorvina. A t performances o f Owenson's opera The First Attempt, "the Duchess o f Bedford and her friends . . . appeared with their hair held in place by golden bodkins" (Stevenson 97, 96). Owenson herself became identified with her heroine, and proceeded to play the harp so frequently at gatherings o f polite society that she ended up with a deformed spine. A t the same time, The Wild Irish Girl was found to display the nationalist fervour that Edgeworth, in the eyes o f her critics, lacked, and for years after the publication o f the novel, "the issues o f Irish politics would be argued out in terms o f Sydney Owenson's rhetoric" (Flanagan 124).  13  29  Despite its popular success, The Wild Irish Girl attracted negative critical response from the start, which was mingled with misogyny as in Edgeworth's case, but also had a classist undercurrent by alluding to Owenson's bohemian origins and upstart social progress. Owenson was the daughter o f an itinerant actor and one o f the many unconfirmed stories in her biography suggests that she was born on a boat as her father was taking her English mother to live in his native Ireland. (The place and date o f her birth remain elusive, possibly as a result o f Owenson's efforts to construct a life-story for herself that suited the image she wanted to project to the public. Current criticism prefers to use her maiden name, rather than "Lady Morgan," to underscore her lowly origins as a positive factor, and to avoid the misunderstanding that her outlook was that o f an aristocrat.) After governessing for a number o f years, Owenson was adopted by the Marquis and Marquioness o f Abercorn as a companion, and she finally "made good" by marrying Sir Charles Morgan, the Abercorns' physician. The contemporary criticism o f her work found it as difficult to separate the literary works from the author as the fashionmakers found it impossible to keep Glorvina and Owenson apart. A reviewer in the Monthly Review describes her as "gifted with an ardent mind," but finds that her "active imagination" interferes both in The Wild Irish Girl, which abounds in "high-coloured terms," and in her poem The Lay of an Irish Harp, which illustrates "the language o f feeling carried to excess."  14  This lack o f proportion was also regularly perceived to mar  her personal appearance: "her eyes would be very pretty i f they did not squint a faire dresser les cheveux. Her figure is not the better o f being obtrusively crooked, and her head is ornamented with a frightfully ill-cut crop" (Charlotte Clavering to Susan Ferrier, qtd. in Stevenson 137). Her conduct, according to the arbiters o f polite society, also left  aisance  something to be desired: "her manners are not the most refined, and effect the  and levity o f the fashionable world, which, however, do not sit calmly or naturally upon her" (Prince Puckler-Muskau, qtd. in Stevenson 262). Edgeworth, a member o f a wellestablished land-holding family, responded favourably to The Wild Irish appalled by Florence  Macarthy  Girl,  but was  (1819) for a number o f reasons, including its author's  unbecoming ambition. Edgeworth insists that she herself preferred to "repose on the soft green o f M i s s Austen's sweet and unambitious creations" rather than aligning herself with Owenson's "dazzling brilliancy."  15  The hostility in these comments against a woman who had reached beyond her sphere becomes positively shrill when Owenson tried to defend herself against her attackers. Her most vocal critic, John Wilson Croker, fulminated, [w]hen a woman o f violent irrepressible passions, and inordinate conceit and vanity, has the mortification to receive a severe but just castigation for her broadly-blazoned offences against good taste, correct feeling, and sound morals, it is no more than natural that she should rave and vociferate a little, and that, in the orgasm o f her rabid but impotent fury, she should even rake into the stercoraceous and putrescent puddles o f Billingsgate for filthy missiles to hurl at the head o f her antagonists.  Blackwood's  16  conducted a veritable vendetta against Owenson, calling her "a spindle-  shanked old body, aping the airs o f youth; and in mind a haggard demoniac, who mistakes contortions for activity, rage for force, and the exhibition of the toothless gums for the very act o f biting" (qtd. in Stevenson 240). She was in her mid-forties at the time.  31  Despite its popularity (which may w e l l have increased partly i n response to such hysterical criticism o f Owenson's oeuvre), The Wild Irish  Girl  nearly fell out of print.  L i k e Edgeworth's novels, it attracted the attention o f feminist scholars i n the 1980s and was re-issued as part of Pandora's "Mothers o f the N o v e l " edition. The series, however, reprinted a version that had the opening exchange o f letters between father and son missing, and B r i g i d Brophy, in her Introduction, appears unaware that another version o f the novel exists. Ferris, who knows about its shortcomings, feels that she has to apologize for her use o f the Pandora edition, but points out that (in 1991) it was the one "most easily available to the modern reader" (123 n 2 6 ) . ;  17  The swift disappearance o f  series like this may be linked to the fact that, in the mid-1980s, books like Edgeworth's and Owenson's had not yet been (re-) discovered for the field o f literary nationalism, a subject which, especially when linked with postcolonialism, has become very canonical indeed. Moreover, authors introducing such editions sometimes applied a flippancy to the books that prevented these from being broadly endorsed. Brigid Brophy avers: "[mjany novels are deplorably bad. The Wild Irish delightfully so" ("Introduction" vii).  Girl  is one o f the few to be  Since then, however, The Wild Irish  afforded the same academic recognition as Castle  Rackrent,  Girl  has been  with a Pickering and Chatto  edition in 2000, edited by Claire Connolly and Stephen Copley, and retailing at U S $ 4060.  32  Walter Scott, Waverley; Or, 'Tis Sixty Years Since (1814)  The correlation between cultural nationalism and the literary market, apparent in the metropolitan reception o f The Wild Irish publication o f Waverley.  Like Castle  Unlike the anonymity o f Castle  Girl,  Rackrent,  Rackrent,  becomes even more pronounced with the Waverley  was published anonymously.  however, its title page's being signed only by  the "the Author o f Waverley" helped to turn the disguised author into a popular and critical sensation. Thus, Edgeworth's achievement in writing about the Irish from the unconventional point o f view o f the periphery rather than the metropole (a point o f view adopted by Owenson, as well as by Scott and such other contemporary writers o f historical fiction in Ireland and Scotland as Charles Maturin and Susan Ferrier), was transformed by the "anonymous" author o f Waverley  into what has become a cultural 18  phenomenon with far-reaching effects on Scotland's touristic identity. When Waverley Lay  of the Last  Rokehy  Minstrel  was published in 1814, Scott was already the famous poet o f The (1805), Marmion  (1808), The Lady  of the Lake  (1810), and  (1813). Although the book was published anonymously, many readers, including  Jane Austen, guessed that its author was indeed Scott. In a letter to her niece, Austen complained: "Walter Scott has no business to write novels, especially good ones-It is not fair.-He has Fame and Profit enough as a Poet, and should not be taking the bread out o f other people's mouths.-I do not like him, & do not mean to like Waverley i f I can help it-but I fear I must" (Le Faye 404). Waverley  was a phenomenal success. Scott's  biographer John Gibson Lockhart writes that, within a year o f its publication, "a fifth edition o f 1000 copies appeared in January 1815; a sixth o f 1500 i n June 1816; a seventh  33  of 2000 in October 1817; an eighth o f 2000 in A p r i l 1821" (237). Editions appeared in the United States almost every year from 1814 to 1831. Within Scott's lifetime, Waverley  was translated into French (1818), German (1821-22), Italian (1823),  Hungarian (1823), Swedish (1824-26), Danish (1826), and Russian (1827). Waverley  19  portrays the 1745 Jacobite uprisings and their resolution from the  perspective o f Edward Waverley, an English traveler to Scotland who becomes enamoured o f Highland culture and, through the influence o f a charismatic Highland clan chief and his beautiful sister, is seduced into fighting against the Hanoverians in the '45 before becoming disillusioned with the Young Pretender's cause. From the earliest reviews o f Waverley  to Lukacs's study o f the historical novel (1937), critics saw Scott as  the man who, with his handling o f history and romance, restored respectability to the novel which, after its heydey under Richardson, Fielding and Sterne, was believed to have fallen into decline in the hands o f lady novelists.  20  Shortly before Scott's death in  1832, T. H . Lister declared that, prior to the publication o f Waverley,  the novel was the  form "least respected in the whole circle o f literature"; by contrast, by 1832, the novel had taken "a place among the highest productions o f human intellect" (64). M a n y o f his critics were most impressed with the accuracy o f Scott's descriptions o f the past and the educational and patriotic inspiration arising from them. John Merivale, writing i n the Monthly  Review,  marveled that "almost every variety o f station  and interest, such as it existed at the period under review, is successively brought before the mind o f the reader in colours vivid as the original" (288), and a reviewer for The British  Critic  suggested that "[t]he time which the author has chosen for the historical  part o f his tale, is a period to which no Briton can look back without the strongest  34  emotions, and the most anxious interest."  21  The identification, in his readers' minds, o f  Scott and Scottish history was such that in 1822, Scott was called upon to "handle" history in the pageantry, held in honour o f George I V ' s visit to Edinburgh. B y virtue o f his reputation as an amateur antiquarian and authority on Scotland's history, Scott, a prime organizer o f the event, assisted in the design o f the clan tartans that would be a part o f the pageantry. He was welcomed on board the royal yacht with enthusiasm: "Sir Walter Scott!" the K i n g cried, 'The M a n in Scotland I most wish to see!' and he pledged him a bumper o f whisky" (Buchan 241).  Even today, a traveler to Scotland w i l l find it  difficult to ignore Scott's influence on the country's self-representation. For those who approach the city by train, their introduction to Edinburgh w i l l take place when they disembark at Waverley station. Many o f the stops in Edinburgh are designed to attract North American tourists, specifically the descendants o f Scottish emigrants eager to trace their family trees, to purchase their "traditional" tartans, and to participate in tours, such as the "Rob R o y W a y , " a railway journey whose stops include the town o f Aberfoyle, the meeting-place o f the fictional Rob R o y and Baillie N i c h o l Jarvie in Scott's Rob Roy (1817). In addition to authenticating Scotland's romantic national identity, Waverley  had  a profound effect on similar aspirations in emerging nations both in Europe and in the N e w World. A s the list o f languages into which the book was translated indicates, Scott was read in France, Germany, Italy, Russia, and Hungary, and he provided models for authors ranging from Hugo and Dumas to Manzoni and Tolstoy. The advent o f the historical novel, together with the gothic romance, provided a foundational moment in the creation o f both Canadian and American literatures, and Scott's achievements were such  35 that they applied across party-lines. English and French Canadians both looked to him for guidance and, although he was enthusiastically read all over the United States, Mark Twain blamed h i m for having had a particularly pernicious effect on the chivalric South.  23  In his introduction to the 1971 Penguin edition o f Waverley, published on the occasion o f the bicentenary o f Scott's birth, Andrew Hook asks why, after his unparalleled success throughout the nineteenth century, Scott's reputation suffered a "catastrophic decline" with the end o f the Victorian age, and he comes to the conclusion that "Scott almost disappeared from sight when [the period that had idolized him] came under hostile scrutiny" (12) for its antiquarian passions, conservatism, and romantic patriotism. In restoring such women authors as Edgeworth and Owenson to their rightful place in the creative dialogue that helped to shape the historical novel, however, recent scholars have also initiated a major assessment o f Scott's place in literary history. In their Introduction to the January 2001 issue o f Studies in Romanticism, edited by Ian Duncan, A n n Rowland, and Charles Snodgrass and entitled "Scott, Scotland, and Romantic Nationalism," the editors acknowledge Trumpener's achievement i n recovering to prominence such other literary genres as the national tale, the Gothic novel, and the travel narrative, that influenced the generic form and development o f Waverley.  They  also stipulate, however, that Scott has become a kind o f critical aporia in current scholarship on the early nineteenth-century novel: "[t]he present collection o f essays is conceived i n the spirit o f Trumpener's work, and seeks to extend its critical project—the recovery and reinterpretation o f a lost archive o f national fictions-to Scott himself: whose works still constitute a sublime instance o f the neglected archive" (5).  24  36  J o h n R i c h a r d s o n , Wacousta Or, The Prophecy; A Tale of the Canadas (1832)  Contemporary metropolitan reviewers tended to evaluate Wacousta standard o f Waverley. canonized Wacousta  against the implied  In much the same spirit, nationalist literary critics o f the 1970s as Canada's first novel, for it shares Waverley''s  "plot o f conquest,  historical transformation, and national reconciliation" (Trumpener 270). A t the same time, however, given its representation o f Canada as a site o f cultural dislocation, where metropolitan standards o f cultural evaluation are challenged and transformed, is also the descendant o f the Anglo-Irish national tale (see Trumpener 270-73).  Wacousta Wacousta  is a Gothic romance about a disaffected British officer, Reginald Morton, whose descent into madness shapes the hostile cultural encounter between the British and the Iroquois in Canada. Published five years before the Patriot Uprisings in Lower and Upper Canada (1837-38), and seven years before the legislative U n i o n o f Upper and Lower Canada (1840), Wacousta''s  generically and thematically complex approach to cultural encounter  and reconciliation has proved amenable to a wide range o f nationalist agendas i n Britain, the United States, and Canada. British reviews o f Wacousta  were largely favourable about its historical content,  praising it for providing an account o f "the many exertions, both o f valour and prudence, by which the Canadas were secured to England," a first not only in historical fiction, but in the writing o f history which has "passfed these] over in silence."  25  The format o f the  historical novel also permits a justification o f the imperial project responsible for the extinction o f the conquered people, in this case, the Iroquois, as it alternates between  37  romanticizing and vilifying them. A reviewer in the London United recommends Wacousta  Service  Gazette  to those "who would learn something of the wiliness o f nature,  and subtlety o f argument which distinguish the American Indian," and "the blended cunning and magnanimity o f spirit of this extraordinary and rapidly disappearing people."  26  Richardson himself seemed concerned that he be appreciated as an authority on Canada and a model British imperialist. Eight  Years  in Canada  27  For example, i n his autobiographical novel,  (1848), Richardson advertises himself as Canada's "first and only  author," while celebrating his achievement as the author o f "the only two tales connected with [its] early history" (his sequel to Wacousta,  The Canadian  Brothers  [1840], being  the second of the two tales to which he refers) (107). Richardson also explains that he returned to Canada in 1838 on "a particular and confidential mission . . . that o f furnishing political information to the 'Times' newspaper" i n order to make his "services Times  . . . available i n [Canada's] defence" (3, 5-6). Indeed, Richardson was hired by the  to be its correspondent on the Uprisings in Canada, but he fails to mention that he was fired shortly thereafter because his sympathy towards L o r d Durham did not correspond to the newspaper's editorial policies. Richardson was unsuccessful in garnering further interest in the novel in Canada, despite the efforts o f such prominent Canadian journals as The Literary  Garland  to come to his aid. A reviewer in the Garland  speculates that  Richardson's failure is "only owing to the state o f danger and excitement into which the Provinces have been thrown by the events of the last three m o n t h s . . . . [A]s peace renders the public mind more easy, the plan of republishing Wacousta may be revived."  28  reviewer suggests that social conditions are less than ideal for the publication o f a  This  38  historical novel about Canada, for there is too much resemblance between events in the present and unrest in the past to render the Iroquois uprisings suitable subject matter for a work o f fiction. Thus, the geographical and cultural distance that enables the metropolitan reviewer in the Athenaeum  to posit the imminent extinction of the Natives  exists in sharp contrast to this reviewer's perception of the ongoing threat of renewed violence. Wacousta  went through six editions during its first eight years o f existence, and  was reprinted five further times up to 1967, when the abridged paperback edition appeared. It was first published by Scott's publishers, T. Cadell, London, and W . Blackwood, Edinburgh, in 1832. In 1902, it was serialized in the Toronto Evening  News  as "Wacousta. A C A N A D I A N tale of the time o f P O N T I A C . " In 1906, a deluxe edition appeared, with illustrations and chapter headings by C W . Jeffreys, Canada's foremost historical and popular illustrator. This edition attests to a publisher's confidence in the quality o f the product. Given the novel's action-oriented story and the illustrations by Jeffreys, Wacousta  was able to survive as a "boy's book" (Duffy 114) until the 1920s,  with the efforts o f Riddell and the Makers o f Canada series to assert its scholarly value. Repeatedly, Wacousta  has made its appearance during nationalist periods in  Canada's history. During the 1920s, a period with "almost uncanny similarities" to the nationalist centenary period (Pacey 18), W i l l i a m Renwick Riddell maintained that Major John Richardson showed . . . where the strength o f Canadian poetry, drama, and fiction must lie, namely, not in mere imitation and variation o f Old World themes, but in fresh and vigorous interpretation o f our own life and thought. Only in this way can Canada develop an artistic soul and  39  consciousness, and eventually arrive at that stage o f national independence, co-ordinated and entire, which makes possible a great spiritual contribution in the form o f a national literature. (207-08). In order to establish Richardson as a "maker o f Canada," Riddell focuses on the formal and thematic innovativeness o f Richardson's novel, and locates this innovation at the origins o f an independent Canadian literature. That he does so belies his interest in positing that Canada has a (young) written tradition that constitutes a growing national culture, distinct in its expression from the imperial metropole. Dennis Duffy has rightly argued that Wacousta has become an ideological "battleground for the question o f whether the sweep o f Canadian literature lies towards the renewal o f community or the avoidance o f it" ("John Richardson" 117). Under the influence o f Carl K l i n c k (who wrote about Wacousta in the Literary History of Canada and in the preface to the N C L edition o f the book) and James Reaney, who workshopped plays based on Wacousta and The Canadian Brothers, the book became a conduit for nationalist enthusiasm:  29  [p]ut together, Wacousta and The Canadian Brothers tell the story o f our country from Wolfe at Quebec to Tecumseh at Moraviantown and Brock at Queenston Heights. "Eventually," says James Reaney, "what I'd like to do is find a dramatization o f Aubert de Gaspe's Les Anciens Canadiens which concerns the crucial 1750-70 period in Quebecois [sic] history, then put all three plays together under some such title as The River since all three deal with a series o f civilizations and times along the St. Lawrence and Great Lakes system from MicWllimackinac to Cape Breton to Cape  Breton. But there's a great deal o f work to be done first, work in which scholars, students, actors and friends can take part by clearing up, for example, the history o f our heroic period." (see Reaney; qtd. in Ross 13) If Riddell, in the post World War I emergence o f Canadian cultural independence, had suggested that it was time to move beyond "imitation and variation," then the nationalist critics of the 1970s pitched Canada against the United States, and Wacousta one of the means through which this confrontation could be The 1967 N e w Canadian Library edition o f Wacousta,  became a  filtered.  30  edited by Carl F. K l i n c k ,  has an interesting reception history o f its own. A t K l i n c k ' s request, the novel was abridged to "three-quarters of the original size" (xi) and marketed as an adventure tale. This edition was shortly followed by the canonization o f Wacousta  as Canada's first  novel. Given the serious scholarly efforts to "nationalize" the novel, the jacket cover's description o f Wacousta  is worth quoting from at length: "Wacousta is a rousing tale o f  treachery, adventure, romance, and revenge on Canada's turbulent frontier in the 1760s. It is dominated by the mysterious Wacousta, a white man 'turned Indian,' who gave invaluable advice to the great Ottawa chief, Pontiac, in his brilliant campaign to capture Fort Detroit and Fort Michilimackinac [sic] from the British." Ironically, despite efforts to market the novel as quintessentially Canadian, this summary makes Wacousta  sound  more like a novel by James Fenimore Cooper than by John Richardson. Thus,  Wacousta  becomes an adventure romance about Wacousta, a hero o f Canadian history, against the villains, the British. In their efforts to establish indigenous criteria for the evaluation o f Canada's national literature, critics from this period resort to an American literary model (which is ironic given the strong anti-American sentiment tmderpinning much o f the  41  nationalist criticism o f this period). It is no coincidence, then, that the version used for the 1967 N C L edition derives from the American Waldie edition (see Cronk xxxi). Robin Mathews, i n Canadian  Literature:  Surrender  or Revolution  (1978),  subjected the novel to a Marxist reading and declared the main character a "romantic anarchist" (17) and an individualist, and therefore a prototype o f Americanism. A n d Douglas Cronk, author o f a 1977 M . A . thesis on "The Editorial Destruction o f Canadian Literature: A Textual Study of Major John Richardson's Wacousta;  Or, The  Prophecy,"  presented his findings on the severely edited 1833 American Waldie edition as part o f an anti-American agenda as well. B y the time Cronk's C E E C T (Centre for Editing Early Canadian Texts) edition o f Wacousta The  Wacousta  Syndrome:  Explorations  appeared in 1987 and Gaile M c G r e g o r published in the Canadian  Langscape  nationalist fervour of the 1970s and with it the "Wacousta  in 1985,  however, the  syndrome" was more or less  passe. In the midst of these critical debates, Richardson himself has emerged as a kind o f commodity. Wacousta  has, in recent decades, proven to be a scholarly phenomenon, not  least because critics have proven to be fascinated with Richardson's personality and background. Richardson's Jacobite heritage (his grandparents migrated from Scotland to Ireland after the '45), and his Native and francophone heritage from his maternal side, figure in almost every critical essay and book on Wacousta  as furnishing Richardson with  the credentials to write a novel that captures the psychological effects o f living in Canada. They thus break away from the tendency o f early British critics to see the novel as emblematic o f Empire, and choose instead to see it as emblematic o f Canada's geographically and psychologically fractured identity. A s Duffy has stated, the "century  42  and a half of critical and public attention paid to Wacousta  ...  has made o f Richardson's  imagination a powerful force to be dealt with when outlining the shape o f our literary experience" (117).  31  In this respect, Richardson himself has become a synecdoche o f  Canada's cultural identity.  Philippe A u b e r t de Gaspe pere, Les Anciens Canadiens (1863)  If Wacousta  was, as Richardson himself declared, the first Canadian novel to take  Canadian history for its subject, then Les Anciens  Canadiens  appears to have been the  first French-Canadian novel to describe the Battle on the Plains o f Abraham and its consequences. L i k e Wacousta,  as well, Les Anciens  Canadiens  exhibits features from  both the historical novel and the national tale, in its conciliatory theme (Jules d'Haberville's marriage to an Englishwoman) and its focus on intercultural union from the perspective of the colonized (namely, in the failed romance between Blanche d'Haberville and the Scottish traveller, Archibald Cameron o f Locheill). Indeed, Trumpener has described Les Anciens o f Waverley  Canadiens  as a "thematic and formal" derivation  which "opens as a French Canadian national tale" (260). A s I hope to  demonstrate, however, the formal and thematic resemblances between Aubert de Gaspe's novel and the national tale extend beyond the opening of Les Anciens  Canadiens  and  inform its complicated representation of cultural encounter. Translated into English and adapted to the theatre almost immediately, the novel was avidly received by the French- and English-Canadian public alike. Within a year o f  43  its first appearance in 1863, a second edition, revised and corrected by the author, became necessary, with further editions in 1877, 1886, and 1899. In fact, the book never seems to have been out o f print since it first appeared, and is currently available in the 1993 French-language edition, published in Montreal by Les Editions Fides, and edited by Maurice Lemire, and i n the 1996 English-language translation by Jane Brierley, published in Montreal by Vehicule Press. Early reviews were immensely favourable. Alluding to the stagnancy o f French-Canadian culture following the Conquest, the poet and critic Abbe Henri-Raymond Casgrain compared the book to the spring break-up o f a river and praised Aubert de Gaspe for his prodigious research which had resulted in "cette conception, si savante et a la fois si simple, qui en est sortie tout-a-coup complete et toute vetue, comme la Minerve antique" (117). The book, in other words, was immediately recognized as the imaginative counterpart o f Francois-Xavier Garneau's Histoire  du Canada  depuis  la decouverte  jusqu'a  nos jours  (1845-48), which rewrote the  Conquest into a story o f French-Canadian perseverance and, with its vivid, impassioned writing, inspired generations o f writers, historians, and politicians. L i k e the Histoire, Anciens  Canadiens  brought the past so successfully back to life that both the average  reader and the specialist were enchanted with it. The Bulletin Canada  Les  du parler  frangais  au  thought that "les levres et le verbe des ai'eux . . . se raniment dans ces pages,"  complemented by "toutes les choses du passe . . . les fetes populaires . . . les fetes intimes de la famille, pleines de gaiete tranche et de chansons" (Charron 374). L i k e several o f the other books under discussion, the reception o f Les Canadiens  Anciens  has changed in tandem with larger nationalist issues. During Quebec's Quiet  Revolution, for example, Aubert de Gaspe was attacked for his elitism, most scathingly  44  by Nicole Deschamps (1968), who dismissed Les Anciens  Canadiens  as a limited and  biased portrayal o f French Canada's landed gentry during the Ancien Regime: "[1]'image que Philippe Aubert de Gaspe donne de la societe du temps dans son roman lui est done personnelle et ne correspond pas necessairement aux faits" (15). Deschamps is echoed by Rainier Grutman (1997), who suggests that the author catered to the perspective of the English-Canadian ruling class rather than reflecting a French-Canadian point of view, and offers Aubert de Gaspe's wide-ranging reading in British authors and his open debt to Walter Scott as particularly damning evidence. Finally, Roger L e Moine (1994) suspects that the book's initial success derived from its complicity with the values o f the religious elite, and that it unduly eclipsed other novels o f the period, Pierre J. O. Chauveau's novel o f manners, Charles  Guerin  (1853), among them.  Grutman also has a great deal to say about the English translations of Les Canadiens.  Georgiana M . Pennee's The Canadians  of Old  Anciens  appeared as early as 1864,  followed by Confederation poet Charles G . D . Roberts's 1890 translation which was reissued in 1905 under the title Cameron  of Lochiel.  In his Translator's Introduction,  Roberts states: "[i]n Canada, there is settling into shape a nation of two races; there is springing into existence, at the same time, a literature in two languages."  32  Grutman  accuses Roberts of upholding what w i l l come to be known as a "two solitudes" concept of Canadian nationhood and concludes that Roberts's decision and that o f his publishers to omit the Notes (later restored in the N C L edition), "bien que ceux-ci constituent une mine d'informations sur la population q u ' i l se propose a etudier," reveals his unwillingness to delve into the special character o f French-Canadians (see Grutman 111). L i k e The Golden  Dog, Les Anciens  Canadiens  has been called upon to help proclaim the  45  principle o f bi-culturalism, once again, one on English-Canadian terms, as titles such as Norman Penner's Keeping Tradition  Canada  Together  (1978) or Robert M c D o u g a l l ' s Our  Living  (1959), with its ambivalent use o f the possessive pronoun, indicate. L i k e the names o f Edgeworth and Scott, the name o f Aubert de Gaspe has become  synonymous with a region. Several websites for the town o f Saint-Jean-Port-Joli proudly proclaim that "[t]he village earned its reputation through Philippe Aubert de Gaspe, last lord o f the territory and author o f the first French-Canadian novel" (see " A Summer o f Festivities"). The town has a museum called the Musee des Anciens Canadiens, "the most prestigious wood carving museum in N o r t h America" (See Musee des Anciens Canadiens Home Page). In Quebec City, Aubert de Gaspe's former home is now the site of an expensive restaurant, " A u x Anciens Canadiens," whose home page features a server clothed in the traditional dress o f an "habitante," with the cap, apron, and skirt, holding what look to be home-made baked goods i n a basket, in arms that she extends to the viewer (see " A u coeur du Vieux Quebec").  Napoleon Bourassa,  Jacques et Marie: Souvenir d'un peuple disperse (1865-66)  B y the time Bourassa published Jacques  et Marie,  he was already a well-established  painter. During his travels in France and Italy, he had become acquainted with the work of Hippolyte Flandrin and the German Nazarenes whose simple religious mysticism he found deeply appealing. Flandrin's and the Nazarenes's work had a strong public and educational component, and Bourassa drew from them important inspiration for the  46  frescoes he was to paint in several Quebec churches. His mural L 'Apotheose Christophe  Colomb  de  gained international exposure when it was exhibited at the 1863  Exposition universelle in Paris. Conceived i n the spirit of the Nazarenes, a school o f German romantic painters who attempted to recover the style and spirit o f medieval religious art (and who were to influence the Pre-Raphaelites in England), the mural celebrates the religious and scientific progress o f Western culture and features such famous scientists and explorers as Galileo and Columbus, as w e l l as the figure o f FrenchCanadian federalist and Canadian founder, Georges-Etienne Cartier, to conclude the lineup. Within this progression, then, the foundation o f Canada features as the culmination of scientific progress, and the achievement o f a divinely-sanctioned (imperially-realized) destiny. Bourassa's daughter and biographer, Adine Bourassa, explains the ideological and political significance of the mural: Son Apotheose  de Christophe  Colomb  ne represente pas autre chose que la  progression indefinie, a travers les siecles de l'idee scientifique et religieuse du decouverte de l ' A m e r i q u e . . . . Ce magnifique ensemble se terrnine a la figure de Sir Georges-Etienne Cartier, indiquant dans l'espace, le projet d'une ligne de communication entre les provinces de la Confederation naissante, realisant ainsi le reve de Christophe Colomb et de beaucoup d'autres explorateurs: un passage vers la Chine, un trait d'union entre les deux oceans. (304) There is an apparent ideological contrast between the celebration of pan-Canadian and imperial union depicted in L 'Apotheose Jacques  et Marie.  and the near-violent anti-expansionism o f  This contrast is reconciled, however, by the ideological anti-  47  industrialism and anti-materialism o f the Nazarenes, whose values are clear in Bourassa's representation of the Acadians' rural, agrarian way o f life and Catholic values. Bourassa's paintings o f large religious and historical panoramas also influenced the organization o f his novel on the deportation o f the Acadians, which conceives o f each of the four sections as a carefully composed panel in a historical narrative. Framed by a broad historical sketch o f the various stages of the deportation, each section focuses on the lives o f the collective and o f representative individuals. Frequently, Bourassa uses painterly language to bring a scene to life ("la mer avait pris une teinte profonde d'indigo, sur laquelle la barque laissait un long sillon d'argent comme un trait de burin sur un metal bruni" [146]) or he draws on a specific painter to set a scene, as on the occasion when Gordon dreams o f painting Marie in one o f the "poses de ces pastourelles poudrees" favoured by rococo painter Francois Boucher (89). The palette that Bourassa permits himself in his word-paintings is rather more vivid than that which characterizes his murals, which, in an effort to emphasize the spirituality o f the subject matter, tend to be pale and ethereal. However, there is no doubt whatsoever about the ideology underlying both his painting and his writing, namely his strong ultramontanist convictions, according to which his Acadians sing "saintes harmonies de l'Eglise militante" as they are being deported (261). Jacques  et Marie  was serialized i n La Revue  Canadienne  between 1865-66 in  order to keep the publication, of which Bourassa was the editor, afloat (see L e Moine 99). Although Bourassa's motivations were apparently more financial than creative, the novel attracted enough favourable attention to be serialized again in Le Canadien L 'Opinion  Publique  (1880-81) and  (1895), followed by further serialized versions i n Quebec i n 1912-13  48 and 1915. A s serializations were often used to lock in subscribers, the fact that the novel continued to appear in this form even when bound versions were available (published in 1866 and 1886) indicates that it must have had considerable popular and educational appeal. The 1912-13 serialization coincided with plans by L a librairie Beauchemin to publish an edition o f the novel for use in schools, but the project did not come to fruition. One o f five novels, (Les Exploits immortelle,  Jacques  et Marie,  d'Iberville,  and Les Anciens  Frangois  Canadiens)  de Bienville,  La  Seve  which address the trauma o f  Conquest by providing "[des] exemple[s] de revanche psychologique" (Lemire 169), Jacques  et Marie  itself appears to have generated a series of novels with the Deportation  as a theme—among them Charles Guise's Le Cap au Diable Taschereau-Fortier's Les Orphelins Blomidon  de Grand-Pre  (1931), L ' A b b e G r o u l x ' s ^ w Cap  (1932), Antoine-J. Leger's Elle et lui, idylle  and Une Fleure Laurent's Epopee  d'Acadie, tragique  un episode  du Grand  (1859), M m e Alexandre  tragique  Derangement  (1956) (see Lemire, Les Grands  dupeuple  acadien  (1940)  (1946), and Albert Themes,  169). Albert  Laurent's novel, according to Lemire, directly responds to Bourassa's book and criticizes its depiction o f the deportees as passively accepting their fate. In one of the few sustained readings of Jacques  et Marie  (the criticism on which seems to have largely  been the somewhat repetitive domain o f one scholar, Roger L e Moine), Rainier Grutman analyses the role o f Latin in the book as guaranteeing not "la redemption dans l'ici-bas, mais la vengeance dans l'au-dela" (159). Otherworldly retribution no longer seemed enough when Laurent was writing his version o f the Deportation. I f 1960s critics took issue with the perceived elitism o f Aubert de Gaspe's world and bitterly distanced themselves from its ideology, recent fictionalizations o f the Deportation pay homage to  49 nineteenth-century authors by imitating them while, at the same time, challenging their world view. In this spirit, Laurent modifies Bourassa's novel for, in the mtervening century between the publication o f the two novels, attitudes toward Acadian history had changed, with a very determined turning away, from the mid-1950s onwards, from the patriotic conservationism that had long dominated the cultural production o f the region. Maurice Lemire suggests that "[a] force d'insister sur la soumission, la loyaute et la resignation des Acadiens, des romanciers comme Bourassa et Antoine Leger ont accredite l'idee d'une race veule que les Anglais ont maltraitee a loisir sans aucune resistance. Albert Laurent reprend le theme mais en glorifiant, cette fois-ci, la revoke et en condamnant la soumission" (114). Laurent's version of the Deportation anticipates even more radical rewritings in the work of Antonine Maillet. Her first book, Aux-Coques,  Pointe-  appeared in 1958, and, like most of her oeuvre, draws on the rollicking  story-telling o f Rabelais to bestow energy and imagination on her characters. The anticlerical force o f Rabelais sustains the movement away from the conservative, ultramontanist understanding of Acadian nationhood that we find in Bourassa. Unlike Les Anciens  Canadiens,  Jacques  et Marie  has not maintained its hold on  the popular imagination. Neither Bourassa himself nor the novel is well-known enough to serve as a tourist draw. The website o f L ' A c a d i e where he was born lists the chanteuse Angele Arsenault (who also sings about the Deportation) as a famous citizen, but not Bourassa; likewise, tourist information on Grand-Pre has much to say about the Deportation, but nothing about Jacques  et  Marie.  Bourassa may have fallen out o f critical discussion because o f the very political and religious ideologies that made him popular in the nineteenth century, namely those  50 implied by his ultramontanism. From the post-Duplessis era, onwards, the backlash against traditional associations o f an authentic French-Canadian identity with an agrarian and Catholic society resulted, in the realm o f literary criticism, in a shift in focus onto issues o f class and social transformation.  W i l l i a m K i r b y , The Golden Dog (1877)  The publication history o f The Golden Dog and its readings reflect the changing preoccupations o f Canadian literary culture and education. In the late nineteenth century, K i r b y was hailed by George Moore Fairchild, a wealthy businessman and man o f letters, as the Canadian Scott. Commenting on K i r b y ' s place in Canadian literature, Fairchild asserted that " W i l l i a m K i r b y w i l l be remembered as the Walter Scott o f Canada" because The Golden Dog "is the greatest o f all our Canadian romances." Fairchild concluded his comments on Kirby with a lament that Kirby had not produced more historical novels apart from the one: "I could wish that Kirby had done more on the lines he so auspiciously commenced. The material was, and is, profuse for the writer o f Canadian romance" (Fairchild to L e Moine, 1 Jan. 1903, Lome Pierce Collection, Queen's University, B o x 41. Quoted in Gerson 68). Fairchild's commentary, as we w i l l see, stands out among English-Canadian criticism o f K i r b y ' s novel, for later critics w i l l come to dismiss K i r b y ' s historical romance as either ideologically motivated (Kirby was a staunch Loyalist) or escapist.  51  K i r b y ' s work has remained, from its publication to the present, the subject o f critical approval in French Canada. It is the only English-Canadian novel to have received sustained ( i f somewhat sparse) attention by French-Canadian critics. In the French press, K i r b y ' s friend Benjamin Suite reviewed the novel in L 'Opinion  Publique:  "[sjaluons un Anglais qui a etudie l'historie de la Nouvelle-France. Saluons l ' u n des meilleurs romans canadiens qui aient ete ecrits en langue anglaise" (Suite 208). Suite also compares K i r b y favourably with the historian Parkman: " L a partie [des] recits qui ressort de 1'imagination pure et simple contribuera a populariser le Chien d'or,  ceci  n'arrivera pas pour M r Parkman, car du moment que l ' o n traite l'histoire pour l'histoire, on ne se fait connaitre que d'une classe de la societe" (208). Suite praises K i r b y ' s novel precisely because it does what history proper cannot do: make history available to a wide reading audience. K i r b y ' s achievement as a historian and novelist, although widely acknowledged in English and French Canada in the late nineteenth century, became somewhat controversial in the twentieth. The differences in the reception o f The Golden Dog by English- and French-Canadian critics demonstrate indeed that the cultural encounter envisioned in K i r b y ' s novel goes beyond its content to its reception history, as is the case as well with Les Anciens  Canadiens.  The title page o f the M a c M i l l a n edition o f The Golden Dog (1944) stipulates that the novel has been "shortened, with introduction and glossary by E . C . Woodley, M . A . , " and that the novel has been "Authorized by the Ministers o f Education for British Columbia, Quebec and N o v a Scotia," presumably for use i n the classroom. The glossary includes the biographies o f the real-historical figures on w h o m the characters are modelled, as well as a list o f place-names. Like that o f other historical novelists, then,  52  K i r b y ' s work has been used for educational purposes and any lasciviousness or violence not suitable for young readers was easily removed by abridging the book. The M a c M i l l a n version was one i n a series o f editions before the 1940s and after, which, through their abridgements and marketing, responded to various educational and nationalist agendas. The post World War I era, preoccupied with consolidating the identity o f Canadian culture, saw the publication o f Canadian "classics" like Wacousta, Roughing It In the Bush (1854), and The Golden Dog, as well as o f such series as L o m e Pierce's "Makers o f Canadian Literature" and the "Master Works o f Canadian Authors," a project initiated by the Radisson Society in 1925, and o f monographs on notable writers such as Haliburton, Lampman, Carman, and Kirby (see Pacey 19). Three notable writers and critics are involved in renewing scholarly interest i n K i r b y during this period: W i l l i a m Renwick Riddell, a judge and legal historian, wrote a biography on him in the "Makers o f Canada" series, (1923), T . G . Marquis produced the Introduction to The Golden Dog (1925 edition), and L o m e Pierce published a biography on K i r b y in 1929. A s is typical for Canadian literary critics o f the time, these three authors are most interested in establishing indigenous criteria for evaluating Canadian literature, and i n demonstrating what makes K i r b y ' s The Golden Dog uniquely Canadian, both in form and content. For Marquis, this entails eliminating excessive traces o f Scott's influence on K i r b y by providing a heavily abridged edition o f the novel. H i s Introduction to the book comprises one short paragraph, and is worth quoting from at length: [i]n issuing a new edition o f The Golden Dog it has been thought necessary to give the book thorough revision. Many errors, especially in the spelling o f proper names, were found, and these have been corrected?  53  The author gathered together a vast amount o f information bearing on the period of his story and of his characters. He saw fit, after the manner o f Sir Walter Scott, to incorporate this into his novel. A s a result, The Golden  Dog,  as originally published, contains patches o f general and  scientific information that mar the flow of the story and weary the reader. M u c h of this has been judiciously cut out, but nothing has been omitted that is essential to the narrative, (vii) Thus, this introduction implies that it is more important to focus on the "story" o f the novel than on its literary antecedents. Riddell's biography contains, on its title page, the following description of the aims o f the "Makers o f Canada" series: the series is "dedicated to the writers o f Canadapast and present-the real Master-builders and Interpreters of our great Dominion." In the first line of the book, Riddell stipulates that he does not "propose to say anything of the political writings o f K i r b y " but wants to focus instead on The Golden  Dog  which, he  says, is "a romance and not a historical novel." A historical novel, " i n the ultimate analysis, is history and psychology moulded into the form o f fiction." Romance, and in particular The Golden  Dog,  "makes use of historical names and personages, but does not  use the facts of history. . . . [I]n 'The Golden Dog,' nothing turns upon historical fact and the denouement and catastrophe are wholly imaginary" (129-30). Riddell then proceeds to "tell the story" o f what inspired Kirby to write the novel. L i k e Marquis, Riddell does not emphasize K i r b y ' s literary influences, but rather foregrounds the legend of the Golden D o g in Quebec, and in James L e Moine's The Maple  Leaves  (1863).  54  In the 1960s, the period that Pacey compares to the 1920s, the N C L edition o f the novel was also abridged. The jacket cover stipulates that "Derek Crawley has cut The Golden Dog to half its original (and somewhat alarming) length o f 678 pages, without losing any o f its essential tempo and colour." Thus, the novel persists as an adventure romance, "an enthralling tale o f love and murder, woven into an authentic historical background," but-as mentioned in my Introduction—it is also marketed as a bi-cultural allegory. However, K i r b y ' s rediscovery as forerunner o f bi-cultural policy was shortlived, and in a parallel to the criticism, in the 1960s and beyond, o f Aubert de Gaspe as elitist and conservative, Margot Northey blamed him for being "a Tory Loyalist-at a time when liberal ideas were increasingly popular" (89). Thus, in his politics, he does not reflect what was going on in Canada in his own time, and he certainly isn't a model for contemporary Canada. N o r does he have an accurate idea o f what was going on in Britain at the time: "[l]ike so many other colonials, he sought to maintain the ideals and way o f life he associated with the motherland at a time when the motherland was herself changing" (Northey 91). However, he is still a forerunner o f sorts, namely for the cultural pessimism o f George Grant, Dennis Lee, and Scott Symons, all writers who "feel the need to warn o f [the] loss" o f Canada's national identity and who thus "lament for a nation" (101). One o f the few critical pieces to pursue K i r b y ' s alleged bi-culturalism, John Robert Sorfleet's essay on K i r b y (1989) is remarkable for defending K i r b y ' s historical vision and deep understanding o f French Canada's complicated history: " K i r b y emphasized a strong Pan-Canadian-English and French-element in imperial relations. He understood the needs and aspirations o f Quebec and he valued the contribution she  55  could make to Canadian self-realization. It is no platitude when the Quebec nationalist Maurice Lemire states, "[d]e tous les romanciers canadiens-anglais, i l est seul a penetrer aussi profondement la mentalite carradiemie-francaise" (Lemire 142). Sorfleet is the only critic who seems aware o f the French-Canadian criticism on Kirby. While English-Canadian critics were busy reading K i r b y as a prototype o f various contemporary nationalist ideologies, francophone criticism evaluated the book as a historical novel, bringing to the debate a sophisticated knowledge o f the genre. David M . Hayne's entry on Kirby in the Dictionnaire des oeuvres litteraires du Quebec is also very positive. He praises K i r b y ' s adaptability as a writer: "[lj'oeuvre litteraire de K i r b y est abondante et variee: elle embrasse tous les genres" (115). Bilingual and an expert on the Canadian historical novel, Hayne is the only critic, apart from Lemire, to call The Golden Dog a historical novel, and he stipulates that it is "le meilleur exemple du genre dans la literature anglo-canadienne du X I X e siecle" (115). While English-Canadian writers like Rosanna Leprohon used French Canada as a historical background for their novels, K i r b y was the first English-Canadian writer to understand French Canada's history, capturing "l'atmosphere du Regime Francais" (116).  Jean Mcllwraith, A Diana of Quebec (1912)  I f K i r b y successfully captures the spirit and "atmosphere" o f N e w France, then he does so because his cultural nationalism is expressed in the romantic terms standardized, in the discipline o f history, by Garneau, and in the genre o f the historical novel, by Scott. A  56  Diana of Quebec, however, is remarkable i n this context for its refusal to allegorize historical process. More than any other novel studied here, it presents two competing, even contradictory, aims: to portray the long-term effects on both colonizer and colonized o f imperial encounter, so that cultural rapprochement appears almost impossible; and to posit Canada as a colony capable, in the long run, o f neutralizing political discontent. Thus, it is only with the passage o f time that historical wounds can be healed and social order be tentatively restored. Significantly, this temporal distance is mirrored in the novel's narrative mode, the fictional memoir o f Mathews, who recalls his tenure in French Canada from a distance o f thirty years, and from the geographical distance o f Britain. Information on Jean M c l l w r a i t h is sparse, and the biographical sketch in The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature (1997) is brief enough to bear quoting in full: B o r n in Hamilton, Canada West (Ontario) [in 1859], she was educated at the Ladies' College, Hamilton, and through the correspondence program in modern literature offered by Queen Margaret College, Glasgow University, Scotland. From 1902 to 1919 she worked as a publisher's reader in N e w Y o r k while establishing herself as a writer o f literary criticism, biography, and fiction. She returned to Canada in 1922 and died in Burlington, Ontario [in 1938]. (Benson 701) M c l l w r a i t h was writing historical romances during the first decades o f the twentieth century, at a time when the interest in such work was dropping off sharply, although the history o f N e w France remained an attractive subject to such prolific writers as Charles G . D . Roberts, Theodore Goodridge Roberts, and Gilbert Parker. Numerous authors o f  57  historical fiction also wrote for the lucrative market o f educational books, and, in addition to writing books specifically for this purpose (see Huyck), Mcllwraith's novels are often written for an audience that includes children. A s an author o f textbooks like The Children's Study (1899), M c l l w r a i t h unequivocally depicted the kind o f Canada educational authorities wanted to be taught in school. In this book, for example, she describes Canada as a desirable place for Loyalists to go to because, in addition to being a welcoming place, it offers the refugees a "greater part o f the M o h a w k nation" (qtd. i n Coates 168). In her historical novels, however, M c l l w r a i t h abandons this straightforward didacticism for a complexity o f voice that appears to be unique in Canadian historical fiction.  A Diana of Quebec (1912) is set in the years immediately following the  American Revolution, and deals with the political antagonism between the British and the French Canadians from the perspective o f the imperial administrators, for whom Canada's value as a member o f the British Empire is threatened by the French Canadians' refusal to honour their oath o f allegiance to the British crown. A Diana of Quebec thus implicitly speaks back to such novels as Jacques et Marie, where French Canadians' virtue and loyalty are inextricably linked to the religious ideals w h i c h organize their daily lives, and to Les Anciens Canadiens, which insists that loyalty to legitimist monarchy (whether French or British) is an integral trait o f French-Canadian national character. M c l l w r a i t h is the author o f four historical novels for adults, as well as short stories and books for children, including two biographies, A Book About Shakespeare (1898) and A Book About Longfellow (1900), as well as her book on Canadian history for children, simply titled Canada (1899). Apart from being an author o f political and  58  literary histories for children, she is also the author o f three works for theatre, and a biography for the "Makers o f Canada" series, Sir Frederick Haldimand (1904), the same series that w i l l , two decades later, publish biographies on K i r b y and Richardson. Thus, by the turn o f the twentieth century, three years after the publication o f her first book, M c l l w r a i t h had established enough o f a literary reputation to have contributed to a prominent series devoted to enshrining Canada's literary and political figures. In the year o f its publication, A Diana of Quebec was deemed a valuable work o f British historical fiction, and warranted mention in the Guide to British Historical Fiction (1912), published in London as a guide to school teachers o f history. The book opens with a Foreword which stipulates that the Guide was conceived in response to the needs o f "teachers o f History" who rarely have "sufficient time to read or to search for suitable novels to recommend to their pupils" (v). Thus, its authors, two British county school administrators, published the Guide, which comprises a representative list o f historical novels "illustrating every phase o f British History" (v) from the Norman Conquest to the late Victorian era. The school curriculum firmly i n mind, the Foreword begins with a class- and gender-based metaphor o f subservience to posit historical fiction as secondary in seriousness to history proper, but useful in drawing students into a study o f the real thing: "[n]o attempt need be made to demonstrate the value o f historical fiction as a handmaiden to history proper" (v). The ancillary purpose o f these novels is reflected in the emphasis on qualities that may be considered an educational draw, for example their "picturesque" landscapes and their "graphic" and "thrilling" plots.  34  Included in this Guide to British Historical Fiction are historical novels published by Canadians, South Africans, and Australians, thus indicating that British fiction is  59  broadly defined here as fictions o f the English-speaking British E m p i r e .  35  A Diana of  Quebec appears in the section devoted to fictions about the "American War o f Independence" and is admired as an "accurate and suggestive" account o f Quebec at the end o f the American Revolution. N o t surprisingly, given the British bias o f the Guide, the highlight o f Mcllwraith's novel is identified as the "authentic character portrait" o f L o r d Nelson " i n the earlier days o f his career" (137). Ironically, while M c l l w r a i t h participated i n educating school children o f the early twentieth century in the officially sanctioned image o f Canada, her own work became a victim o f a similar process. Her virtual disappearance from Canadian literary history must be seen as a reflection o f contemporary literary historians' conceptions o f what a Canadian literature should look like. A Diana of Quebec, which combines historical fact with conventions borrowed from romance and children's literature, is not preoccupied with bloody warfare as is Wacousta. Instead, it introduces the subject o f historical conflict through the various conversations o f its main characters and in doing so achieves a nuanced, often ambivalent picture o f the conflicting interests at stake in forging a national identity. Nevertheless, like Wacousta, A Diana of Quebec ultimately justifies the British conquest o f French Canada from the perspective o f the British. While Mcllwraith's narrator and the author presumably share a faith in the superiority o f the British, this is one o f the books where the story-telling seems at war with the required ideology. If Jacques et Marie and Les Anciens Canadiens provide their characters and their readers with a psychological revenge to make up for a historical one, it would be interesting to speculate whether in the ambivalence o f her fiction M c l l w r a i t h compensated for the party-line required in the school textbooks.  60  Mcllwraith's books have fallen out of print, and she is rarely discussed in critical literature. Her first historical novel, co-written with W i l l i a m McLennan, entitled The Span  O' Life: A Tale of Louisbourg  in Acadia; in her second, The Curious  and  Quebec (1899), deals with the fall o f Louisbourg  Career  of Roderick  Campbell  (1901), she writes  about the members o f three Scottish families who support Charles Edward Stuart in 1745 and meet again, as exiles, in North America during the Seven Years' War. A Diana  of  Quebec, in turn, portrays the attempts by its narrator, Mathews, to investigate the causes o f social unrest in French Canada, and to locate and arrest the perpetrators o f unrest. The book resembles detective fiction in its compilation o f leads, hunting down of resources, and follow-ups on hunches that often lead nowhere. The main character is a reader o f "clues" with which he attempts to restore social order, but he is often an unobservant reader. In some ways, Mcllwraith's novel provides a suitable plot for my o w n work as a literary historian. In my attempts to hunt down and compile information on Mcllwraith, I have felt as though I were engaging in detective work o f my own. Dennis Duffy has located Anne Hebert's Kamouraska  (1970) at the origins of "a  rebirth of the historical novel in Canada," where novelists begin "to handle historical material in new and complex ways" (Sounding yields to no easy moralizing" (75). Yet A Diana  54) portraying a "complex reality that of  Quebec easily falls under Duffy's  criteria, as do the earlier fictions, which demonstrate clearly that there is nothing "easy" about their moral messages, which are the products o f extended explorations o f historical, ideological, and social conflict. (Duffy's comment is reminiscent o f L e M o i n e ' s criticism of Jacques  et Marie  as a novel whose heavy moral tone diminishes its historical value.  See L e Moine, Napoleon  Bourassa,  esp. 106). If Kamouraska  represents a formal and  61  thematic transformation in the Canadian historical novel, then that transformation may be said to have its roots in such books as A Diana  of Quebec.  Mcllwraith's novel offers the  familiar love plot of popular romance and the journey motif o f travel narrative; however, her lovers abandon the new world, whose society is torn apart by the effects o f history, in favour o f a return to Britain, where history and society evolve with reassuring and predictable order. With its focus on the domestic and political spheres as highly fraught sites o f an equally fraught nationhood, as well as its portrayal o f the emptiness o f national character and the fragility o f nations in historical time, A Diana  of Quebec  is an important  Canadian novel about the ideological future o f moments of historical and cultural change.  In the nationalist period of the 1860s to the 1880s, French-Canadian novelists justified novel-writing as part o f a larger didactic project, involving the description o f local manners and customs and the popularization o f history, so that religion, cultural values, and historical identity became inextricably linked. The gendering o f literary genre and of the canonization o f Canadian texts is particularly remarkable in the case o f Wacousta. Richardson was canonized in the 1970s as Canada's first novelist, thereby revealing literary critics' bias against equally valid "contenders" such as Frances Brooke, whose History of Emily Montague was published in 1769, and Julia Catherine Beckwith Hart, whose Saint Ursula's Convent, Or, The Nun of Canada, was published in 1824. Hart's novel has received a great deal o f critical attention recently, and was published in 1991 in a C E E C T edition (the publishers o f Douglas Cronk's authoritative edition o f Wacousta), edited by Douglas Lochhead. In June 1998, the National Library o f Canada issued a release, by its Rare B o o k Librarian, M i c h e l Brisebois, which states that "Saint Ursula's Convent is the earliest recorded novel written by a native-born Canadian and published in book form in Canada" (see Brisebois). G i v e n Beckwith Hart's Canadian birth, and the publication date o f her novel, which predates that o f Wacousta, Saint Ursula's Convent challenges the literary critics' choice in Richardson o f a "first novelist." It also reveals their masculinist bias, however, for Beckwith Hart's novel deals with the symbolic union of the British and the French Canadians by focussing, from within the domestic sphere, on the social and religious ties o f the two families involved. The jacket cover of the C E E C T edition stops just short o f declaring Saint Ursula's Convent Canada's first novel: "[i]n 1824, when the novel was issued in Kingston, Upper Canada, it became not only the first work o f fiction written by 1  2  62  a native-born Canadian and published in what is now Canada, but also a significant early attempt by a Canadian o f English and French heritage to articulate a vision o f a N o r t h American nation that linked through family, social and religious ties, the best o f Great Britain and France." Richard L o v e l l Edgeworth to Daniel Augustus Beaufort, 26 Apr. 1800. Qtd. in Butler 359. See, especially, H a l l 12-16. See "The M a r i a Edgeworth Literary Weekend," Edgeworthstown Home Page. See "Overview on Arts and Culture," Irish Tourist Board Home Page. See "Literature in Irish," Department o f Foreign Affairs Home Page. See "Famous Creative Women: M a r i a Edgeworth," Famous Creative Women Home Page. See Croker, " O n the Female Literature of the Present Age," 274. See " O n N o v e l Reading: W i t h Observations on the L i v i n g Novelists," 495. 3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  See British  Critic,  n. s., 1 (1814): 164.  See Maria Edgeworth. Tales and Novels, 18 vols. London: Baldwin, 1832-33; and The Novels of Maria Edgeworth, 12 vols. London: J . M . Dent, 1893. A n interesting note about the reception history o f Owenson's novel: in his entry on The Wild Irish Girl in the Cambridge Guide to Women's Writing in English (1999), Victor Sage writes that "Charles Robert Maturin's The Wild Irish Boy (1808) satirized the vogue for Celtic kitsch amongst the aristocracy" (667). However, I found myself wondering whether Sage had, indeed, read Maturin's book for I found little i f any trace of the kind o f satire that he describes. Instead of producing a satire, Maturin (who haunted the Morgans' parties "with his long melancholy nose and raven wig, his corsets and his mincing step" [Stevenson 244]) in fact tried to cash in o n Owenson's popularity by producing a male version o f the book and then having remarkable success with it. Stevenson confirms this impression. He writes that the "fame o f The Wild Irish Girl prompted [Maturin] to bring out a novel with the title The Wild Irish Boy (1808), i n which a prominent character is a proud old chieftain, maintaining the ancient glory o f Ireland, and served by a devoted chaplain" (97). The influence o n Maturin o f Owenson's precedent-setting novel is also apparent in the influence o f The Wild Irish Girl on Maturin's next novel, The Milesian Chief (1811), which, "though less imitative in title, took even more o f its theme from M i s s Owenson's book" (Stevenson 97). 13  1 4  See the Monthly  Review,  n. s., 57 (1808): 382, 380, 383, 375.  See Edgeworth, New Monthly Magazine 13 [1820]: 637. See Quarterly Review 1 (1809): 52. See "Some Titles That Elude M e " at the CoquetteNet Home Page for a reader's account of how she tried to track down the fate o f the series, a project o f Routledge and Methuen. She was informed after a lengthy odyssey that copyright had reverted to the author(!). For more on the challenges to metropolitan perspectives provided by the national tale, see Ferris's discussion o f The Wild Irish Girl as a novel that "relocates the scene o f cultural encounter, confounding the distinction between 'over here' and 'over there'" so that "familiar [metropolitan] categories come under pressure" ("Cultural Encounter" 288). For her discussion of the intersections between the development o f the national tale 15  16  17  63  and o f a sentimentalist cultural nationalism in Ireland, both made possible by the "emergence o f Ireland as a cultural truism" in the late eighteenth century, see Burgess, "Violent Translations," esp. 33-36. For her summary o f Waverley's reception, publication, and translation history, see Claire Lamont's edition o f Waverley. This view remained influential w e l l into the twentieth century, and informs Ian Watt's discussion of the rise of the novel as a new literary genre in the social context o f eighteenth-century England, and with particular focus on Fielding, Richardson, and Sterne. See Watt, esp. 35-60. For his response to Watt's argument, and his impressive re-evaluation of the connections between the rise of the novel and the social context o f eighteenth-century England, see M c K e o n , esp. 1-22. See Rev. o f Waverley. The British Critic, n.s. i i (1814): 190. This pageant has a complex reception history o f its o w n that reflects Scottish critics' changing attitudes towards Scott and towards Scottish nationhood. Hugh Trevor-Roper evaluates Scott's orchestration of the visit to Edinburgh as an example o f Scott's willingness to forge (in both senses of the term) Scotland's monarchical national identity. A comparison between Buchan's celebratory description of the visit and Trevor-Roper's considerably more sardonic version is revealing. Trevor-Roper states: The [visit] was a bizarre travesty o f Scottish history, Scottish reality. Imprisoned by his fanatical Celtic friends, carried away by his own romantic Celtic fantasies, Scott was determined to forget historic Scotland, his own Lowland Scotland, altogether.... Thus was the capital o f Scotland 'tartanized' to receive its king, who himself came in the same costume, played his part in the Celtic pageant, and at the climax of the visit solemnly invited the assembled dignitaries to drink a toast not to the actual or historic elite but to 'the chieftains and clans o f Scotland.' (2931) For Trevor-Roper, Scott's contribution to Scotland's "tartanized" collective identity represents a falsification o f its true national identity and a fictionalization o f the past analogous to Scott's novel-writing. For another account of this event, see Pittock; for alternative accounts of the history and role of the tartan, see Cheape; for her alternative understanding of the use of the tartan and pageantry, in Scott's The Antiquary (1820), as tools in the marketing o f Scotland's traditional past in a modern commercial Britain, see Burgess, "Scott, History, and the Augustan Public Sphere." For more on Scott's influence on Canadian historical novelists, see Winnifred M . Bogaards, "Walter Scott's Influence on Nineteenth-Century Canadian Historians and Historical Novelists.;" see also Eva-Marie Kroller, "Walter Scott in America, English Canada, and Quebec;" Carole Gerson's A Purer Taste; and Gwendolyn Davies, Studies in 19  2 0  2 1  2 2  2 3  Maritime  Literary  History.  In this respect, the editors attribute to Trumpener the almost single-handed transformation of the fields o f Genre Studies and British Romanticism, thereby defining Trumpener herself as a literary critical phenomenon with her own quickly expanding reception history. The questions that the editors raise about the need to re-examine Scott's corpus centre, broadly speaking, on the question o f Scott's contribution to the discourse o f Scottish cultural nationalism and the various forms that it took in the private 2 4  64  and public sphere, comprising romantic and familial relationships, as well as public displays o f pageantry. They thus aim to revise E d w i n M u i r ' s account, in Scott and Scotland: The Predicament of the Scottish Writer (1936), of Scott as the instigator of a backward-looking and inauthentic nationalism in order to examine his role in defining romantic nationalism as a particularly modern response to cultural and political changes taking place in Scotland and around Europe in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. See Review o f Wacousta, Athenaeum 29 Dec. 1832: 837. See Review o f Wacousta, The United Service Gazette 13 A p r . 1833: 8. Throughout his lifetime, Richardson himself proved to be the novel's most devoted publicist, as well as his own. B y contrast to Edgeworth, who learned from an unidentified outside source that the K i n g had read Castle Rackrent, Richardson himself sent an unsolicited copy o f Wacousta to W i l l i a m I V , and then used the fact that the K i n g had read the novel to help solicit subscriptions for subsequent editions. "Wacousta,—Or The Prophecy," The Literary Garland 1 (1838-39): 144. The novel's action-packed story-line contributed to its quick adaptation to the stage. "Wacousta, or The Curse" was performed in N e w Y o r k City in 1833, 1834, 1836, 1849, 1851, and periodically until 1865. It was staged in Detroit in 1837 and in Boston in 1851. For more on the adaptation o f Wacousta to the stage, see Odell. George Grant and Margaret Atwood are among the critics famous for their formative contributions to the Canadian literary nationalist scene from the 1960s to the 1980s. In a Lament for a Nation (1965), Grant bemoans the imminent demise of Canadian nationhood. H i s argument focuses on the disruptive influence o f an individualistic and technologically-oriented American-style nationalism on a country like Canada, which he conceived o f as essentially conservative and anti-modern in spirit and history, because as derived from its British cultural and political history. L i k e Grant, Frye and A t w o o d locate the greatest threat to Canada's economic and cultural sovereignty in the U.S. Their arguments implicitly naturalize Canada's British heritage as formative of, not threatening to, Canada. A t w o o d is best known for her aphorism, in the Afterword to the Journals of Susanna Moodie (1970), that i f the United States' national illness is megalomania, then Canada's is schizophrenia, caused by Canadians' self-conscious relationship to Americans. See Atwood, 62-64. 2 5  2 7  2 8  2 9  3 0  31  A s with Owenson, critics o f Richardson have enjoyed dwelling on his physical appearance. Ray Palmer Baker describes Richardson in the following terms: "[h]is French blood, which shows in the contour o f his face, always gave a picturesque turn to his actions." Baker then mentions Richardson's "pistols, his horses, and his pet deer" as evidence o f such "picturesque turns," not to mention his "[d]rinking, quarrelling, [and] duelling" (25). See Grutman, esp. 111. 3 2  33  *  L o m e Pierce's William Kirby: The Portrait of a Tory Loyalist contains, on its title page, a photograph o f Kirby, a Victorian gentleman, looking larger-than-life. The reader is looking up at K i r b y who appears to be a broad-chested man, a large scarf wrapped around his right shoulder, his eyes staring piercingly ahead o f him. In other words, he comes across looking like one o f the "Makers o f Canada." This is one of the few instances in these books where the appearance o f a male author is an issue, but the  65  semiotics o f the photo are vastly different from the descriptions we have o f Owenson and Edgeworth. See, for example, the entry on Waverley, as the story o f "a young English gentleman [who] visits the Highlands" and whose "intimacy" with the "fiery" Highlanders is depicted with a "picturesque truth" (120-21). The authors also indicate that, in "the case o f events which might be termed historical landmarks, a wider range o f choice has been presented" (v). Thus, the fall o f Quebec contains almost as many entries as the Jacobite uprisings o f 1745-46, and includes such Canadian titles as Gilbert Parker's bestseller The Seats of the Mighty (1896) and Herbert Strang's comically-titled Bob the Ranger (1897), a "graphic story o f the struggle in North American . . . [at] the time o f Montcalm and Wolfe" (128).  3 4  3 5  66  Chapter Two Mobile Archives: Travelers Around Britain and the Empire  Envoi  A l l o f the books under discussion feature a great deal o f travel; indeed, the act o f travel, its various purposes, and the different ways that have been developed to write about them constitute an integral feature o f the political and aesthetic program pursued in these novels. Thus, Thady Quirk's absentee masters spend as much time away from their Irish estate as possible, with the result that Sir K i t Rackrent "know[s] no more about the land than the child unborn" (14). When he arrives with his new wife, Lady Rackrent looks upon the Allyballycarricko'shaughlin bog outside her window as would a tourist who is used to picturesque prospects, and she wonders "what's a l l that black swamp out yonder" and "[wjhere are the trees?" (17). Having proven that she is a less accommodating heiress than her husband had hoped, she is, shortly thereafter, locked into her room for seven years and has little time to find out more about her new environment, but Sydney Owenson's Horatio M — does, and quickly becomes attuned to the beauties o f both Glorvina, the Celtic princess, and o f western Ireland where "the ocean, calm and unruffled, expand[s] its awful waters almost to apparent infinitude" (65). Reginald Morton, alias Wacousta, first spies Clara Beverly i n the isolation o f the Highlands, after an arduous climb over massive rocks barricading the way to her "oasis," where she sits among "roses and honey-suckles . . . dressing the wounded shoulder o f a stag"  67  (Richardson 454), and he journeys all the way to Canada in pursuit o f revenge when his friend steals her from him. Edward Waverley, on his way north to Scotland in 1745 to j o i n his regiment, travels into civil war as he makes the acquaintance, i n turn, o f the Bradwardines, o f Donald Bean Lean, and o f Fergus Mac-Ivor. Orphaned and in danger after the Battle o f Culloden because o f his Jacobite affiliations, Archibald de Locheill finds safety in Quebec. During his years as a student at the seminary, he frequently makes the journey downriver to spend his vacation with the d'Habervilles before he and Jules d'Haberville leave for Europe to join the British and French armies respectively, with the result that they find themselves on opposing sides during the Battle o f the Plains o f Abraham. In The Golden Dog, famous traveler and botanist Peter K a l m arrives in Quebec and admires the view from the river onto Cape Diamant, while L a Salle checks in with Talon at Beaumanoir before setting out to explore the Mississippi and the Great Lakes. The administrators in A Diana of Quebec so frequently travel back and forth on diplomatic business that it is difficult to keep track o f them and their whereabouts: it is fitting that, to her surprise, the reader finds at the end that the narrator has been telling his story from retirement in London. Finally, there are the victims o f political and military strategizing gone horribly wrong: the Deportation o f the Acadians, an enforced and tragic journey, is preceded by some Acadians' efforts to relocate while they have some choice in the matter, and it results in numerous other forays in search o f their families and a new home. A s this list illustrates, travel serves a broad range o f purposes in these novels. It may ostensibly be undertaken for personal enjoyment as it is in Archie and Jules's sleighride along the St. Lawrence in the company o f the d'Habervilles' talkative servant Jose,  68 or in Horatio's sketching trips on the west coast o f Ireland for want o f anything better to do in the early days o f his stay there, or in a picnic near the Montmorenci Falls in A Diana  of  Quebec. More often, however, travel is performed in the service o f larger  interests, and even such leisure activities often become inseparable from military, scientific, and educational ones. Even in the thick o f action, Edward Waverley likes "to ride a little apart from the main body, to look at any object o f curiosity which occurred on the march," and when a building or scenery strikes his fancy, he "[leaves] the squadron for half-an-hour, to take a survey and slight sketch o f it" (395). When the Riedesels prepare for a hasty departure from Quebec with the approach o f military action, M c l l w r a i t h appeals to the children she typically included in her readership by offering leisurely details about the preparations necessary for an eighteenth-century Atlantic crossing, dwelling on the cow and chickens brought on board to provide milk and eggs, and on the lettuce seeded in crates so that the passengers could be kept healthy and the children amused while they watched it grow. In other words, in these travels it is difficult and not always particularly useful to separate between travel as "business" on the one hand or leisure activity on the other because the discourses are often found to have the same root. This, to a degree, is even true with the third kind of travel addressed in this chapter. Closest to the original meaning o f travel as "travail," the enforced migration of the Acadians made it necessary that they draw on the practical knowledge o f the sea they had acquired as fishermen and dyke-builders in more peaceful times, and that Acadia's memory be kept alive by telling its story on the road: the more famous heir to Bourassa's Jacques Maillet's Prbc-Goncourt-winning Pelagie-la-Charrette  et Marie,  Antonine  (1979) tells the story of a group  69  of storytelling Acadians who make their way back from the southern United States to their homeland in a journey that takes them a decade to complete.  1  These combined purposes of travel are also to be found in two travel reports that, more than any other, have influenced the nationalist writing o f Ireland and Scotland. One of these is Arthur Young's nine hundred-page A Tour in Ireland, Observations 1778  on the Present  State  of That Kingdom:  Made  With  in the Years  General 1776, 1777, and  (1780), the work of an agricultural economist and editor o f The Annals  Agriculture.  of  Trumpener criticizes Young's book for paying insufficient attention to the  exploitation of tenants by landowners (see 39f), but the wealth o f detail he presents is such that, to his contemporaries, it refuted long-held prejudices against the Irish apparently without requiring much interpretive commentary from the author. Edgeworth was greatly impressed with the scrupulousness o f Young's observations, as was Owenson. Indeed, the priest in The Wild Irish  Girl  calls A Tour  in Ireland  the work o f  "an intelligent and liberal countryman o f [Horatio's]," before he cites a passage which, by observing Irish peasants at work "procuring lime for manure," effectively dispels the stereotype o f "idleness [as] the chief vice laid to the account o f [Irish] peasantry" (188) that Horatio has imprudently reiterated. Despite its obvious shortcomings as a popular narrative (and its failure-in keeping, it should be added, with the time in which it was produced—to analyze classrelations with any thoroughness), Young's work fared considerably better in public opinion than Samuel Johnson's much maligned A Journey Scotland  to the Western  Islands  (1775), which angered Scottish nationalists because o f its unsentimental  depiction o f Highland life, its dismissal o f oral tradition as a mainstay o f cultural  of  70  survival, and its advocacy o f English ways as the measure o f all things. A s an imperial ethnography, the book commits an error very similar to Young's, but it does so for the opposite reason: while Young becomes so mired in materialist detail that he cannot conceptualize the larger implications o f his observations, Johnson is "[s]elf-immured in literary language, [and therefore] incapable o f comprehending the material bases o f Scottish culture" (Trumpener 87). Johnson's alleged failure is all the more ironic because bis and Boswell's journey was undertaken in the Enlightenment spirit o f testing his readings against the factual evidence (see Korshin 238f). Too often for his critics, however, it was the evidence that had to measure up to the previous reading. A l l o f the travelers I discuss retrace in physical terms a particular ideology against which they evaluate the local landscape and culture. Very often (as in Morton's journeys to the Highlands in Wacousta), these criteria for evaluation, and the ideologies to which they are attached, have been influenced by literary precedents. Johnson's journey, for example, was itself a literary palimpsest: at Boswell's instigation, their itinerary copied part o f B e n Jonson's in 1619 and, more influentially, it duplicated the travels James Macpherson had made in 1760-61 in search o f the alleged Ossian manuscripts. Johnson was determined to expose these as fraudulent and the evidence he found (or, rather, the lack thereof) confirmed h i m in his opinion. In keeping with his method o f inquiry (namely, a field trip), he captures the result o f his investigations in terms o f an expedition: "[b]ut this is the age in which those who could not read, have been supposed to write; in which the giants o f antiquated romance have been exhibited as realities. I f we know little o f the ancient Highlanders, let us not fill the vacuity with Ossian. I f we have not searched the Magellanick regions, let us however forbear to people them with  71  Paragons" (119). O n one o f the many occasions when the Prince o f Inismore and the priest instruct Owenson's hapless Horatio in Irish lore, they draw the young man's attention to the instances where Macpherson gives the Scots undue precedence over the Irish. In order to lend scholarly authority to his own conviction that the Irish have a considerably older civilization than the Scots, the priest quotes at some length a passage from Johnson which describes his futile search for documents that would support Macpherson's assertions that the Ossian poems are based on an ancient original in Erse. However, at the end o f this particular lesson, Macpherson still wins the day because Glorvina, diplomatically conceding that "Ossian was an Irishman," waxes lyrical over the poetry because she "experience[s] in its perusal a similar sensation, as when, in the stillness o f an autumnal evening, I expose my harp to the influence o f the passing breeze, which, faintly breathing on the chords, seems to call forth its o w n requiem as it expires" (107). In other words, the scientific spirit o f Johnson's enterprise is marshaled as long as it serves the purpose o f Owenson's nationalist enterprise, but it is dismissed when its coldness threatens to displace the lyricism that her book endorses as a characteristic distinguishing the Irish from the English. The parallels drawn between Ireland and Scotland in Johnson's book and discussed in Owenson's novel became something o f a staple in subsequent British travel writings about Ireland, but more often than not they were used to point out that, depending on the author's point o f view, one country had more to complain about its position in the British Empire than the other. One thought, for example, that "[t]here was no fatality in the position o f Ireland at a l l . . . She was in the position o f a country destined, by her very geographical situation, to be absorbed into the body-politic o f a  72  greater country beside her" (Leitch Ritchie, qtd. in Hooper 58). Another queried, "[w]ho ever hears o f Scotch grievances? Nobody. Why? Because they have none of which to complain" (J. Grant, qtd. in Hooper 75). The size o f Canada and the multitude o f interests involved in governing it preclude the existence o f a travel report resembling Young's or Johnson's that could have influenced all four o f the Canadian books in my discussion. Cronk cites Alexander Henry's Travels 1760-1776 Concise  and Adventures  in Canada  and the Indian  Territories,  Between  the Years  (1809) as a likely source for Richardson, as well as Robert Rogers's A Account  of North  America  (1765), but Richardson's own extensive travels in  North America and Europe probably provided him with a great deal o f firsthand knowledge of the geographies he described. Kirby cites Peter K a l m ' s Travels America,  in  North  originally published in Swedish in 1749-50, with an English translation  available in 1770-71. The work closest to those o f Young and Johnson in scientific spirit and patriotic effect is Thomas Chandler Haliburton's An Historical Account  of Nova  Scotia  and  Statistical  (1829), a work for which the author conducted a massive amount  o f research during his travels throughout the Maritimes as a judge. Haliburton was opposed to the union of the Maritimes with the Canadas, and his attention to the history and economy o f N o v a Scotia was, among other things, motivated by his wish to illustrate the cultural distinctiveness of the region. The Account  and its depiction o f the life and  deportation of the Acadians became the source for Longfellow's Evangeline, also frequently cited in Bourassa's Jacques  et  Marie.  and it is  2  Even i f Johnson's journey was more often than not a model to contradict, his and Young's journeys became foundational models o f sorts for the investigative journeys that  73  are at the centre o f many nineteenth-century British national tales and historical novels: Walter Scott, in Waverley, uses a practical means o f transport, the "humble English postchaise, drawn upon four wheels, and keeping his Majesty's highway" to alert his readers that they are to expect "heavy roads, steep hills, sloughs, and other terrestrial retardations" in the shape o f thorough instruction in the political, social, and cultural underpinnings o f the story before they arrive at "a more picturesque and romantic country" (63). A s these concessions indicate, however, the investigative journey did by no means replace other and often older models o f travel such as the voyage initiatique o f courtly romance, the picaresque novel, the grand tour, the sentimental journey (as in Sterne's famous book, A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy [1768]), and travel as satire (as in Tobias Smollett's ill-tempered Travels Through France and Italy [1765]). O n the contrary: all o f these can be found in the books to be discussed, sometimes to counterpoint the scientific impulse o f investigation, sometimes to j o i n forces with it.  Arrivals  The Wild Irish Girl introduces the young Englishman Horatio M — . O f extravagant habits and artistic ambitions, he is not inclined to follow the career as a lawyer and parliamentarian that his father envisages for him. L o r d M — dispatches his son to the family's Irish estates to mend his ways, a decision greatly resented by his offspring who complains to a friend that he has long associated the place with the barren land o f the  74  "Esquimaux" (33). Still, he duly sets off, fully expecting to find his sojourn there an insufferable "exile" (31) away from the refined enjoyments o f the metropolis. Even as the ship approaches the Irish coast, there are indications that the young man's experiences on the island w i l l be momentous. A s the coastline appears on the horizon; an unnamed fellow traveler on the steamship approaching Dublin "comparefs] the view to that which the bay o f Naples affords" (38). A t a time when Romantic taste had elevated Italian scenery to a standard o f beauty (and Owenson later published a book celebrating Italy's charms), this analogy is high praise indeed, and it regularly appears in contexts in which a location gains in legitimacy by the association: W i l l i a m K i r b y too understood the dynamic when he has Peter K a l m exclaim at the beginning o f The Golden Dog: "See Naples and then die!" adding "See Quebec and live forever!" (1). The very use o f an analogy is, however, also an indication that, although Horatio is willing to concede that "the bay o f D u b l i n " is "one o f the most splendid spectacles in the scene o f picturesque creation I had ever beheld, or indeed even conceived" (39), Ireland is also sufficiently "other" to require a comparison, and a rather muddled one at that. Pedantically he comments that " i f the scenic beauties o f the Irish bay are exceeded by those o f the Neapolitan, my fancy falls short in a just conception o f its charms" (39), and the lack o f clarity in the reference o f the possessive pronoun, not to mention his convoluted way o f expressing himself, create enough ambiguity to allow for two opposing readings: it could be either Italy or Ireland that sets the standard o f beauty. The panorama he sees from the deck provides h i m with a version o f the encompassing view that M a r y Louise Pratt, in her study o f travel as imperial enterprise, calls the perspective o f the "monarch-of-all-I-survey" (92), but his privileged outlook is suddenly obscured by  75 "a contrary wind": "the weather suddenly changed, the rain poured in torrents, a storm arose, and the beautiful prospect which had fascinated our gaze, vanished in mists o f impenetrable obscurity" (38). The resulting disorientation ushers h i m into the first o f several initiatory experiences that gradually draw h i m deeper into the true Ireland: out o f the mist, a boat approaches to receive the mail and convey the passengers to shore. The six oarsmen remind h i m o f "the once formidable race o f Irish giants," despite the tattered clothing that alludes to their present destitution and suggests that they may be only "the lingering progeny" o f their powerful ancestors. Horatio is sufficiently enthralled by the sight o f "these sea monsters" (40) that he too draws on Mediterranean culture to evoke their powerful presence, although he turns to ancient mythology rather than to contemporary Italy when he admiringly assesses their "sinewy contexture o f forms, which might have individually afforded a model to sculpture, for the colossal statue o f an Hercules" (40). Despite his appreciation o f their athletic bodies, however, Horatio treats the oarsmen with the condescension a squire might extend to the laborers on his estate. These giants are diminished and rendered harmless by their docility and quaintness, and Horatio rewards them with a handsome tip, as i f they had just provided h i m with a splendid theatrical performance. Little does he know that these oarsmen anticipate his encounter, not so easily managed, with the Prince o f Inismore who, despite his advancing years, has "a form almost gigantic in stature [with] limbs o f Herculean mould" (144). In keeping with Horatio's extraordinary decision, at the end o f the book, to remain in Ireland, Owenson takes her time to introduce h i m gradually and thoroughly to Ireland's magic and thus to prolong his "arrival" w e l l into the book. In so doing, she uses a number o f interrelated literary techniques that help her to juxtapose the Anglo-Saxon  76 mentality which has produced her protagonist with the Celtic culture to which he becomes acculturated. The Wild Irish Girl is an epistolary novel, mostly consisting o f Horatio's letters to his friend " J . D . Esq.," but also, early on, o f missives by L o r d M — which explain his decision to send his son to Ireland. With its emphasis on dates and names, the epistolary novel famously mimics the truth claims o f investigative reporting, and Owenson further underlines the veracity o f her text by abbreviating, in the manner o f the novelists o f her day, the names o f places and people as i f to protect them from identification. The epistolary novel lends itself to providing blow-by-blow accounts o f dramatic events or crises (such as Horatio's banishment), made all the more suspenseful by the letter-writer's personal involvement in them, but it is equally suited to conveying the tedium o f days with nothing much to do (such as Horatio's rambles in the neighbourhood o f his father's estate, and his sketching). A s a counterpoint to the chronological mode sustained by the epistolary mode, Owenson introduces older literary forms such as the romance and the idyll in which time is eternal and imagination rules over reason. Through "its narratives o f encounter," Ferris explains, "the Irish national tale sought to place certain forms o f metropolitan reason under pressure and loosen their configuration" ("Cultural Encounter" 302). Thus, Horatio's encounter with Glorvina is preceded by three rites o f passage typical o f the romance: his state o f disorientation escalates from obscured vision during the landing in Dublin, through speechlessness when he encounters a group o f singing women who do not speak English, to a moment o f unconsciousness when he eavesdrops on Glorvina, falls from his perch outside her window, and has to be taken to the Inismores' rooms to recover.  77  Glorvina's family, the dispossessed Irish royalty, who were ousted from thenlands by Horatio's's great-grandfather during the Cromwellian war, live in a ruined castle. In its dilapidation, it has gradually become part o f its natural environment, as Horatio admiringly observes when he comes upon the chapel during a mass commemorating "the anniversary o f the day on which [Horatio's] ancestors took the life o f [the] venerable prince [of the Castle o f Inismore]": "Nearly one half o f the chapel o f Inismore has fallen into decay, and the ocean breeze, as it rushed through the fractured roof, wafted the torn banners of the family which hung along its dismantled walls" (14243).  The overgrown ruin seems taken straight out o f W i l l i a m G i l p i n ' s reflections on the  picturesque (in Three  Essays:  Sketching  [1792]), a connection that Horatio highlights with great enthusiasm,  Landscape  On Picturesque  Beauty,  On Picturesque  but it also evokes the enchanted castle in fairy-tales like Sleeping  Travel,  Beauty,  and On  with the added  complication that he himself temporarily turns into a "Sleeping Beauty" who must be revived from his swoon. Romance and idyll also make their way into the text through Horatio's sketching, and here too Owenson carefully sets the scene. A s an aspiring artist, Horatio is quick to cite painters and sculptors when describing the Irish scenery to his correspondent. He mentions a l l the standard aesthetic categories, together with the painters who best represent them. A picturesque scene conjures up Claude Lorrain (1600-82), whose idyllic landscapes evoked visions o f lost pastoral splendour, while w i l d and rugged, and therefore sublime, mountain scenery is seen through the eyes o f Salvator Rosa (1615-73), a Neapolitan painter whose eccentric work and personality later inspired Owenson to  78  write The Life and Times of Salvator Rosa (1824) under her married name Lady Morgan. A t the foot o f a mountain, for example, Horatio exclaims: [mjountain rising over mountain, swelled like an amphitheatre to those clouds which, faintly tinged with the sun's preclusive beams, and rising from the earthly summits where they had reposed, incorporated with the kindling aether o f a purer atmosphere. A l l was silent and solitary-a tranquillity tinged with terror, a sort o f 'delightful horror,' breathed on every side~I was alone, and felt like the presiding genius o f desolation! (54-55) Dramatic light effects and grandiose isolation cloak the presence o f the divine; they also become an operatic celebration o f the next best thing to the divine, namely the national spirit, an association that Owenson is careful to underline throughout, by showing the Prince o f Inismore as working i n tandem with the priest. More often than not, however, Horatio uses Lorrain and Rosa as little more than the guidebook cliches both had become at a time when tourists stumbled through the Lake District, a Claude glass firmly clamped to their eye.  3  Even when he talks about the  thing that supposedly separates h i m most from his commonsensical father—his art— Horatio uses language that is suspiciously similar to his father's, clogged with abstracts, convoluted syntax, and priggish citations from a multitude o f learned authorities. In other words, Horatio uses his language-like his sketching—to control an unfamiliar environment. Quite often, however, he achieves the opposite and his way o f expressing himself reads like a linguistic performance that has detached itself from the situation that produced it. His curiously ambiguous comment about the beauty o f the bay o f Dublin is  79  one such occasion; another occurs when he travels towards his father's estate. After trying to proceed in an "Irish post-chaise," Horatio complains that he was "[ujnable . . . to sit tamely during the 'penalty o f A d a m , the season's change,' or to sustain any longer the 'hair-breadth scapes,' which the most dismantled o f vehicles afforded me, together with delays and stoppages o f every species to be found in the catalogue o f procrastination and mischance" (41). In other words, the post-chaise may be an extremely decrepit vehicle, but Horatio's rhetoric is not. It outperforms the situation, although his frustration erupts in the spluttering sibilants and thereby undermines its pedantic splendour. When Horatio observes the Inismores from his dangerous perch outside their window, however, he is rendered speechless by Glorvina's beauty, or at least as speechless as the chief correspondent o f an epistolary novel can be permitted to be: "[b]ut how cold—how inanimate—how imperfect this description! O h ! could I but seize the touching features—could I but realize the v i v i d tints o f this enchanting picture, as they then glowed on my fancy!" (74). The tell-tale dashes and exclamation marks, together with the anaphoric sentences loosely held together by coordinates, are a considerable departure from the magisterial entanglements o f his earlier writing, although here too he cannot, hilariously, refrain from composing a picture in his mind: "[t]he grotesque figure o f her antiquated nurse. O ! the precious contrast. A n d yet it heightened, it finished the picture" (74). O n his approach to Dublin, Horatio is surprised when he first hears the giant oarsmen speak. Although they use "an accent and voice that made me startle," they "address . . . me in English at least as pure as a Thames boatman would use" (34). H e then corrects the condescension implied i n this comparison by alluding to their language as "curiously expressive and original" (34). The oarsmen's musical idiom prepares h i m  80 for Glorvina's singing and harp-playing, both o f which insinuate themselves into his metropolitan speech, whose cadence and diction herald what Grant A l l e n calls "the hardheaded organization" o f the Saxon, or "Teuton" (268).  4  In order to explain Horatio's receptiveness to Glorvina and the Irish tradition that she represents, Owenson introduces h i m from the beginning as a somewhat untypical specimen o f Englishness. A s suggested above, he is more his father's son than he admits, but he is also a dandy whose aestheticism primes h i m for his eventual surrender to "the lightness, airiness, imagination, wonder, the sense o f beauty and o f mystery, the sadness, the sweetness" (Allen 268) o f Celticism, even i f he must soon enough trade his foppishness for genuine enthusiasm and dedication. A scene preceding his arrival in the Inismores' castle illustrates the transition. Horatio is attracted to a ruined barn by the sound o f a chorus o f women. He finds a spinning circle o f young women led by an old woman (another fairy-tale motif very much in keeping with the story o f Sleeping  Beauty),  and listens to their song until the women abruptly stop when they perceive his presence. He reports that "the old woman addressed me sans ceremonie, and i n a language I now heard for the first time." The younger women greet his words with repressed laughter while the older woman makes what he takes to be a gesture o f contempt. In this encounter, he is no longer able to maintain the feeling o f superiority that he was able to muster towards the giant oarsmen who, after all, obliged h i m by speaking quaint, but comprehensible English. With these women, Horatio has to confess that he never felt himself "less invested with the dignity o f [a man] than while [he] stood twirling [his] stick and 'biding the encounter o f the eyes' and smiles o f these 'spinners in the sun'" (6163). Horatio attempts self-irony here by stylizing the encounter into a small literary  81  satire, but the "twirling stick"—a dandyesque accessory which the reader finds, postFreud, difficult to countenance with the appropriate composure—indicates that he is uncomfortable in the situation. Here, and in other situations, Horatio is not easily 5  subsumed under the stereotypical headings o f either "hysterical Celt" or "manly AngloSaxon" (see Alderson 119). Ferris suggests that "[i]n its tactics o f displacement the national tale founded by [Owenson] in The Wild Irish GirF attempts to destabilize imperial narratives ("Cultural Encounter," 303). These "tactics o f displacement" w i l l , in turn, be taken up by Canadian novelists, whose attempts to revise imperial narratives o f colonial encounter w i l l be written in the terms provided by Owenson.  Go-Betweens and B o r d e r Countries  Horatio M — is the prototype o f a number o f similar characters i n these books whose dispositions allow them to become mediators between two cultures in need o f reconciliation. George Gordon, in Jacques et Marie, could easily be Horatio's twin: dispatched to N o v a Scotia by his family because he has committed a number o f indiscretions, he decorates his room with portraits o f women, each picture suspended by a different-coloured lock o f hair (the narrator superfluously comments, "[c]e n'etaient pas des portraits de famille" [67]), and he dreams o f adding a sketch o f Marie, drawn rococostyle a la Francois Boucher, with "un o u deux genoux" (89) showing. Marie's innocence converts h i m soon enough to a nobility that tries to match hers and to her religion because in his heart he has always known himself to be Catholic. In other words, as a libertine  82 and an artist, Gordon—like Horatio—is already outside the pale o f his class, but he is also young and impressionable enough to be swayed from his rakish life towards the culture to which he has been exiled, when the right woman comes along. In each case, the hero's attraction to an alien nation, Ireland or Acadia, is captured in a heterosexual romance, but one in which the gender roles have been temporarily reversed in order to make the male characters' education in a culture they initially despise plausible. Impressionable and romantic, Gordon and Horatio also become unnaturally good listeners to please the women they love, thus acquiring qualities typically associated with female characters and preparing them for instruction i n the culture to which their beloved belongs. However, Gordon's and Horatio's femininity are not matched by corresponding masculinity in Glorvina and Marie, both o f w h o m are paragons o f womanliness, but displaced, in The Wild Irish Girl, onto the young woman's father (in conjunction with the priest who keeps a close eye on the Prince's pagan impulses), and, in Jacques et Marie, onto the father and-in a rather drastic extension o f the configuration-onto Jacques, the Acadian fiance. In other words, in loving Glorvina and Marie, Horatio and Gordon must court the present and future patriarchs o f the family as well. A s a result Horatio seems to spend much more time being instructed in Celticism by Glorvina's father and the priest than he spends with Glorvina herself. Indeed, he finds out that not only has he in reality been courting the men and the culture they stand for but he has been standing in for his own father who, it turns out, is also in love with Glorvina and intends to marry her. Once Horatio's education has been completed, however, the male decoys can be safely removed: his father withdraws from the competition, and Glorvina's father dies. A t this point, the allusions to Sleeping Beauty as a myth about the  83  rites o f adolescence can be safely abandoned because Horatio has been awakened from his ignorance and inducted into the duties o f adulthood. Having absorbed enough "feminine" qualities from Celticism to improve the not always praiseworthy ones he had to begin with, and to enhance his education as a responsible and empathetic landholder, he can now also stop being a "woman" and take the place o f not one, but two, patriarchs. For the most part, the gender switching in Owenson's and Bourassa's novels is little more than a narrative device that allows the "lesson" to proceed, but in Scott's Waverley novels such ambiguities appear to have a broader function. In her reading o f the Waverley novels, Judith Wilt suggests that in these books both men and women "must journey through the experience o f the other, the outlawed, gender, before either one can choose and re-fix the male or female identity appropriate to the new age" (117), and Ferris shows how, in Scott, preoccupation with romance, debilitating enough in a woman but at least restricted to the domestic sphere, becomes dangerously irresponsible in a man: "[Waverley] risks the life o f the men on his estate, as well as his o w n life, and he threatens the order o f the state" (102). Indeed, Edward Waverley, w h o m his creator uncharitably described as "a sneaking imbecile" (qtd. in Hook 11), is so enthralled with the romance o f the Highlands that he barely notices how he is being drawn into the Jacobite insurgents' inner circle. Unlike the narrator o f the novel who insists on traveling in a prosaic "post-chaise" (63), Waverley prefers—as it were—conveyance by flying carpet, thus earning himself mockery and censure throughout his adventures. Waverley's preference for French and Italian authors makes h i m suspect both to Flora ("Yes . . . he can admire the moon, and quote a stanza from Tasso" [370]) and to his author. Scott excused Flora's theatrical appearance in "a sylvan amphitheatre," where  84  she proceeds to perform "a w i l d and peculiar tone" on her harp, the "use o f which had been taught to [her] by Rory D a l l , one o f the last harpers o f the Western Highlands" (175-78), by referring "to her French education, i n which point and striking effect always make a considerable object" (502, n.O), but he is clearly not prepared to extend similar leniency to Waverley who gawks at her as i f she were "a fair enchantress o f Boiardo or Ariosto" (177). This fascination with flamboyance is also largely responsible for Waverley's dangerous infatuation with Flora's brother and the Y o u n g Pretender who, as Jacobites, have strong connections to France. However, while the overblown scene in which Waverley first spies Flora contains all the ingredients that explain his shortcomings, it also proclaims that these w i l l be overcome. Before he even lays eyes on her, he comes upon the two brooks that form the river whose course he has been following: "[t]he larger was placid and even sullen in its course, wheeling i n deep eddies, or sleeping in dark blue pools; but the motions o f the lesser brook were rapid and furious, issuing from between precipices, like a maniac from his confinement, all foam and uproar" (174-75). Ascending into Flora's "amphitheatre," he follows this unruly stream, but its-and his-fate have already been determined: both w i l l soon enough merge into a larger and calmer stream, in which the "sullenness" o f one brook cancels out the "mania" o f the other, and vice versa. It is clear that this pay sage moralise also has something to say about the kind o f state Scott has in mind once Scotland has been merged with England. Such reconciliations are not as easily brought about when the character is himself the descendant o f two cultures, as in Archibald de Locheill's case in Aubert de Gaspe's novel. Arche has been erroneously described as simply one o f the many stereotypical  85 British characters who populate nineteenth-century French-Canadian novels (see Hathorn 17). However, as a Jacobite, Archibald is Roman Catholic and speaks French, both factors that make him highly acceptable to the d'Haberville family (see Kroner, "Jacobites," 169). Moreover, the defeat of the Young Pretender's followers in the Battle of Culloden resembled that of the French on the Plains of Abraham, the more so since Murray and Wolfe were present at both battles. There was an unsubstantiated rumour that Bonnie Prince Charlie had escaped to Nova Scotia, and Flora MacDonald ("a name," as Dr. Johnson pointed out, when he met her during his travels, "that will be mentioned in history, and if courage and fidelity be virtues, mentioned with honour" [67]) emigrated to North Carolina until she returned to Scotland via Halifax after the American revolution. The complicated allegiances of the Stuarts and their multilingualism created some startling encounters on the Plains where a group of Highlanders found themselves addressed, in Gaelic, by a "gigantic French officer" who, to them, seemed "his Satanic Majesty in person" (Gibbon 78). Jean Mcllwraith wrote several historical novels using the chameleon-like adaptability of Jacobite characters to give an unusual twist to stories that, by the early 1900s, had already been told several times over. In The Campbell  Curious  Career  of  Roderick  (1901), Roderick allies himself with "with every imaginable faction in the Old  World and the New" (Kroller, "Jacobites," 171), while Captain Mathews, the narrator of A Diana  of Quebec,  proclaims that he has "no personal feeling against the French  whatsoever.... They were the ancient allies of my forebears, and stood by us in our wars with England" (9). However, Mathews, who, as military secretary to the Governor of Quebec, is responsible for locating and arresting French-Canadian and American rebels,  86  is suspicious o f M a r y Simpson whose father was Provost-Marshal in Wolfe's army and died on the Plains o f Abraham. She loves Jacobite "ditties," shows open sympathy with the French Canadians, and demonstrates an unwomanly interest in political and military affairs. In other words, she may be the spy for whom Mathews has been looking. (In an abrupt turn o f events, Mathews proves her innocence and discovers that he is in love with her.) In The Span O' Life: A Tale of Louisbourg and Quebec (1899), the book M c l l w r a i t h co-authored with W i l l i a m McLennan, one o f the characters is modeled on the historical Chevalier de Johnstone, whose testimony on Charles Edward's alleged cowardice during the Battle o f Culloden is summarily dismissed by Scott i n his Notes to Waverley. L i k e Wolfe and Murray, Johnstone fought at Culloden and on the Plains o f Abraham, commenting o n both battles in his memoirs and keeping such distinguished Canadian historians as James L e Moine and P . B . Casgrain busy for years with speculations about his mother tongue (see Kroller, "Jacobites," 172). During his final dinner with the d'Habervilles before the British invasion (in which he w i l l participate), de Locheill warns the d'Habervilles, and with them a l l FrenchCanadians, o f Great-Britain's selfishness: II sied peu a un jeune homme comme m o i . . . de se meler a vos graves debats; mais, a defaut d'experience, l'histoire viendra a mon aide. Defiezvous des Anglais, defiez-vous d'un gouvernement qui a toujours les yeux ouverts sur les interets de l'Empire britannique; defiez-vous d'une nation qui a la tenacite du bull-dog.  S i la conquete du Canada lui est necessaire,  elle ne perdra jamais cet objet de vue, n'importe a quels sacrifices: temoin ma malheureuse patrie. (203)  87 Having made his peace with the British government in order to gain access to his estate, however, he returns to Quebec as lieutenant o f a Highland regiment whose members he has personally chosen from his clan. H i s officer, General Montgomery, orders h i m to set fire to the d'Haberville manor and, indeed, to all property owned by French Canadians that may lie in the path o f the troops that he is leading along the south shore o f the St. Lawrence. In this way, Montgomery, who is aware o f de Locheill's sympathy for the plight o f the French Canadians, tests the young man's loyalty to the British crown and insists that he is not trustworthy because o f his "predilection pour nos ennemis" (220). The French Canadians mistake de Locheill, in his military uniform, for an "Anglais" and fear for their lives (one young woman pleads with h i m to show mercy with her elderly father: "[mjonsieur 1'Anglais, ne tuez pas mon pauvre vieux pere; n'abregez pas ses jours: i l n'a pas longtemps a vivre" [220]), and it takes even his friend Jules considerable time to recognize h i m on the Plains. However, Aubert de Gaspe continues to emphasize de Locheill's Scottish heritage, as well as drawing attention to the ways in which Archibald shows nobility i n even the most adverse situations (he warns the d'Habervilles that he has to burn their house down), but relationships between Archibald and his adopted family become understandably strained. De Locheill sells his estate in Scotland in order to be able to offer Blanche a comfortable life, but she turns h i m down, and she and Archibald spend the remainder o f their lives competing i n celibacy. While. Aubert de Gaspe does his best to explain the switches in Archibald's loyalties, some aspects remain baffling i n light o f his earlier proclamations o f hostility toward Britain (see, for example, Lemire, Grutman, Deschamps). (In these apparent contradictions, de Locheill matches Flora MacDonald who became strongly involved in the Loyalist cause  88 while she lived i n North Carolina, a surprising course o f action perhaps i n a woman who had openly supported the Stuarts and, by implication, opposed the Hanoverians who now found themselves dealing with a rebellious colony. However, virtually any monarchy appeared better to people of MacDonald's background than republicanism.) John Lennox is right to suggest that de Locheill "is the creation of history, an idealized model adapted by de Gaspe from Scott" (131), but as we have seen, the "idealized model" is a complicated one. In Les Anciens  Canadiens  and in Mcllwraith's novels, the inconsistencies brought  on by a character's multiple alliances are "solved" by romance, o r - i n de Locheill and Blanche d'Haberville's case-a celibate version of that plot. In Wacousta,  however, no  such reconciliations are possible. This book too uses Jacobite characters to portray a range o f conflicting allegiances. Lieutenant Johnstone tries to make up for his family's Stuart past by showing exceptional valour, and it could be argued that his efforts are meant to counterbalance the excesses o f Wacousta, whose own life-story closely resembles that of the Chevalier de Johnstone. When Lieutenant Leslie admonishes Johnstone that "a too close adherence to that motto [i.e. 'following wherever my gallant captain leads'] has been, to some degree, fatal to [his] family," Johnstone warmly responds: "[t]hough the winged spur no longer adorn the booted heel o f an Earl o f Annandale, the time may not be far distant when some liberal and popular monarch o f England shall restore a title forfeited neither through cowardice nor dishonour, but from an erroneous sense o f duty" (116). But the Johnstone plot is too slight to make the kind of a difference required to blot out Wacousta's unethical behaviour, and the abridged versions of the book tend to excise it as superfluous.  89 The origins o f Wacousta's vendetta against the de Haldimar family are i n Britain, in the Scottish highlands to be precise, where he first falls in love with Clara Beverly. A s Clara's father has withdrawn from society i n protest against the Jacobites' defeat in 1715 and created a secluded home for himself, his daughter, and their maid. Reginald Morton finds her there and entrusts her to his friend de Haldimar. In order to get his rival out o f the way, de Haldimar convinces his superiors to have Morton court-martialed and discharged from the military, and he marries Clara himself. Seeking revenge, Morton follows de Haldimar to Culloden, to the Battle o f the Plains, and to Detroit. Here he fights o n the side o f the Jacobites, the French Canadians, and the Iroquois, in the hope o f settling the score with both de Haldimar and the British military who, he believes, have unjustly discharged him. In other words, the high civic purpose that motivates Archibald de Locheill (all inconsistencies in his conduct notwithstanding) have here been replaced by personal goals, and fighting on one side or another is strictly a question o f the kinds o f opportunities they offer to those ends. While the very landscape proclaims a peaceful resolution o f Edward Waverley's infatuation with Flora, scenery in Wacousta does the opposite. Morton's invasion o f Clara Beverly's well-hidden Highland retreat is described i n terms that make it resemble rape: progressing "like . . . a crawling reptile," his "toes worm [ing] themselves into the tortuous fibres o f [the roots]," he gains access to the aperture in the rocks: I was compelled to drop my whole weight, suspended by one vigorous arm, while with the other I separated the bushes that concealed the opening. A violent exertion o f every muscle now impelled me upward, until at length I had so far succeeded as to introduce my head and  90  shoulders through the aperture, after which final success was no longer doubtful. (453) (Startlingly, this violent scene has its origin i n a similar one i n a work by Scott, the very popular narrative poem The Lady  of the Lake  [1810], see MacLaren 49.) This description  of Morton and Clara Beverly's first meeting occurs towards the end o f book and can therefore not be read as the sort o f allegorical premonition that the junction o f the two streams provides in Waverley.  Instead, the scene resembles the projection of the  subconscious onto the natural (and architectural) environment typical o f the gothic novel. [n.p.]Richardson's geographical border countries, i n which formal boundaries are far from established (see Duffy Tale 23), are psychological ones as well (see Macpherson, 63-66). B y the time he reaches the English garrison at Detroit, Morton has become so savage in his manner and appearance that the soldiers are startled to hear him speak " i n the purest English accent" (264), and Frederick de Haldimar, seeking "to reconcile the contradiction between [Wacousta's] dress and features and the purity o f the English he had just spoken," accuses Morton of belonging to no nation: "[t]here is no country in the world that would willingly claim you for its subject. Nay, even the savage race . . . would, i f apprised o f your true nature, spurn you as a thing unworthy to herd even with their wolf-dogs" (266). Although he shares numerous features with Aubert de Gaspe's de Locheill and with Mcllwraith's Jacobite picaros,  then, Wacousta's  unpredictable allegiances say at least as much about his neuroses as they do about the politics that make these connections possible. Unlike the reading of Les Anciens  Canadiens  and A Diana  of Quebec,  that o f  Richardson's novel is furthermore complicated by the overlap between the author's life  91  and his fiction. Reading the remarkable papers o f the 1977 conference on Richardson at the University o f Western Ontario (where, under the tutelage o f Carl F. K l i n c k and James Reaney, the Wacousta  industry appears to have had its inception), one finds numerous  efforts to match biographical facts with fictional ones. K l i n c k ' s paper presents a detailed biographical account o f Norton (with w h o m Richardson had an active posting in 1816) only to conclude that "there is no shred o f proof for [the] claim" that Norton inspired the character o f Wacousta (Klinck "John Norton" 21). David Beasley concedes that Richardson's shortcomings - his "penchant for gambling, his occasional lies, his disdain for office seekers at the very time when he was himself seeking office, his vanity, and his aggressiveness" were "allowed to come out i n the biography" (28). Morton's restless movements between the old world and the new and within North America are easily matched by Richardson's o w n wanderings from Queenston to Detroit, from England to Barbadoes, from Spain to Kingston, Montreal, and N e w Y o r k , an itinerary which led one prospective editor to conclude that "it would be impossible to write a biography o f a man who had traveled to as many countries as Richardson had," because "[f]he atmosphere and the relationships necessary to build up a unity to support the protagonist would be either discontinuous or lacking" (Beasley 26). Richardson's biography displays so many features o f the transnationalism that paradoxically characterizes many o f the historical novels written to promote various nationalisms that it deserves to be treated as a "fiction" in its o w n right.  92  Ethnographies  Edgeworth, Owenson, Scott, and Aubert de Gaspe by no means found themselves in identical political situations, but all o f them faced, in some way, the challenge o f embedding their "antiquarian" research in a narrative that proclaimed reconciliation and thus became publishable. Even so, it is important to underline that the very presence o f the research is an act o f rebellion. In fact, it could be argued that the alacrity with which some o f the authors' findings were turned into fashion items and tourist commodities signals among other things the quickly perceived need to render them politically harmless (see Trevor-Roper). Les Anciens Canadiens, published almost a decade after the abolition o f the seigneurial system in 1854, describes a form o f society that no longer exists. A t the same time, however, it sets out to record in painstaking detail the customs and mores o f an earlier era in order to preserve its memory and, with it, the dignity and respect associated with it. When Jules d'Haberville and Archibald de Locheill leave the seminary for the d'Habervilles' manor downstream, their dress is described in painstaking detail. L i k e twins, they are dressed identically, "en habit de voyage," which, during the final weeks o f winter, comprises "capot de couverte avec capuchon, mitasses escarlates bordees de rubans verts, jarretiers de laine bleue tricotees, large ceinture aux couleurs vives et varies ornee de rassades, souliers de caribou pusses a l'iroquoise, avec hausses brodees en poreepic, et enfin, chapeaux de vrai castor" (10). This passage uses the hyper-detailed language o f nineteenth-century fashion magazines i n which description had to compensate for images (expensive to produce and lacking in colour and other features),  93  but it describes in fact a small compendium o f imperial history. For example, although Native people wore castor gras pelts long before before they were traded, the under fur, or duvet, also became an important export article for the European fashion industry where beaver hats were worn until silk hats replaced them in the 1830. Beaver, in fact, was so much in demand that it became the object o f intense English-French rivalry. The young men also sport the colourful sashes that had become the trademark accessory o f the habitant costume as it was popularized in Cornelius KrieghofFs genre paintings o f Quebec rural life, including his work commissioned for the new Quebec Legislative Assembly. Finally, their boots are adapted from Iroquois-style moccasins, footwear better suited to the rigours o f a Canadian winter than fashionable European boots and particularly useful in combination with snowshoes. The colourful idiosyncrasy o f the young men's clothing and the casual harmony with which it combines several different ethnic and social traditions provides a sharp contrast to the military uniforms both w i l l shortly be obliged to wear, as does the fact that they are dressed alike, for, as military officers, they w i l l wear the colours o f opposite camps. Archie and Jules, in other words, are like mobile archives o f textile. The detailed description o f their clothing nostalgically harks back to an idealized time o f mutual understanding and tolerance, but it also looks forward by providing the means o f reproducing at least the accessories that went with this golden age when all else is lost.  6  A similar effect is achieved by the descriptions o f the "foodways" that Jules and Archie encounter during the times they enjoy elaborate hospitality on their way to the seigneurie and at the manor house itself. The first three pages o f chapter six, " U n souper chez un seigneur canadien," are taken up with an extremely detailed description o f the  94.  furnishings o f the dining room, the china, cutlery, table settings, and table manners. A paragraph must suffice to illustrate how Aubert de Gaspe turns these passages into another compact narrative o f French Canadian history, by drawing attention to idiosyncratic customs, materials, and origins: [l]e convert etait dresse pour huit personnes. Une cuillere et une fourchette d'argent, enveloppees dans une serviette, etaient placees a gauche de chaque assiette, et une bouteille de v i n leger a droite. Point de couteau sur la table pendant le service des viandes: chacun etait muni de cet utile instrument, dont les Orientaux savent seuls se passer. S i le couteau etait a ressort, i l se portait dans la poche, si c'etait, au contraire, un couteau-poignard, i l etait suspendu au cou dans une gaine de marocain, de soie, ou meme d'ecorce de bouleau, artistement travaillee et ornee par les aborigenes. Les manches etaient generalement d'ivoire, avec des rivets d'argent, et meme en nacre de perles pour les dames. (77) Throughout, Aubert de Gaspe's attention to the implements and customs o f consuming food by far exceeds the one he pays to the food itself, thus underlining the high level o f sophistication that characterizes the seigneurie and the culture it represents. In this particular chapter, the loving inventory furthermore documents the terrible loss that w i l l be sustained when Archie burns down the manor, while providing the information necessary to reconstruct all o f the items, and the right way to use them, i f necessary. Coarse table manners indicate a society that may require the tutelage o f a more civilized one. Thus, in Waverley, Scott describes a Highland Feast that closely echoes Johnson's description o f the Scots before "the U n i o n made them acquainted with English  95  manners": "Their domestick life [was] unformed; their tables were as coarse as the feasts of the Eskimeaux, and their houses as filthy as the cottages o f Hottentots" (Johnson 28). Finally, in Jacques  et Marie,  Bourassa contrasts a neatly set table in Marie's house with  the disarray in the dining-room where the English celebrate the deportation o f her village, with Stilton cheese and celery ("ce legume predestine de l'Angleterre" [277]) as particular evidence o f their barbarity. Aubert de Gaspe's narratorial stance in Les Anciens leisurely raconteur  Canadiens  is that of a  with little literary ambition: "je n'ai pas assez d'amour-propre pour  tenir le moins du monde a mes productions litteraires. Consigner quelques episodes du bon vieux temps, quelques souvenirs d'une jeunesse, helas! bien eloignee, voila toute mon ambition" (16). However, this casual approach to his work does not prevent h i m from great vigilance when it comes to possible misuse o f his ethnography as a work o f merely folkloric interest, and from counterbalancing the ostentatiously careless presentation o f these "quelques episodes du bon vieux temps" with extensive Notes that provide the entire work with a scholarly air, and that are a feature in most of the novels under discussion. The Notes contain autobiographical information and anecdotes; they transcribe oral tales and local legends. Most remarkable, however, is the violence to which they frequently allude. In so doing, the Notes provide a sharp contrast to the highly stylized (and heroicized) representation o f conflict in the narrative itself. In the first Note, Aubert de Gaspe recounts the public execution, by the ruling British, o f a Scotsman, David M c L a n e , for high treason. Gaspe, a child at the time, was carried on the shoulders o f an older schoolmate in order to see above the crowd assembled to witness the execution and how he watched with his schoolmate how M c L a n e was hung,  96  disemboweled, and decapitated. According to Aubert de Gaspe's note, the reason for this cruelty was that the British were not convinced of the French Canadians' loyalty to the British crown, despite historical evidence to the contrary: "[l]e gouvernement, peu confiant dans la loyaute dont les Canadiens francais avaient fait preuve pendant la guerre de 1775, voulut frapper le peuple de stupeur par les apprets du supplice" (372). Aubert de Gaspe's frank expressions o f loyalty to the French-Canadian people on the one hand and his unveiled resentment against the British on the other are a far cry from the sometimes strained allegorical formality with which Anglo-French conflicts are resolved in the story o f de Locheill and the d'Habervilles. The Notes work to add a rebellious subtext to the conciliatory politics o f the main narrative. For example, when Jules d'Haberville's English wife offers the faithful servant Jose a cup of tea as he lies dying, the Note informs us that "[l]es anciens Canadiens detestaient le the," and that Aubert de Gaspe's mother, who tried to introduce tea into her husband's family, was suspected o f taking "cette drogue pour faire l'Anglaise" (356). The decision of English translators of Les Anciens  Canadiens  and their publishers  to eliminate the Notes may be read as a concession to the popular market, but—like the decision, in 1905, to re-issue Charles G . D . Roberts's 1890 translation under the title o f Cameron  of Lochiel—it  may also be seen as a measure to repress the rebellious subtext o f  the book (the 1974 N C L edition finally did include the Notes). Although the anglicization o f Les Anciens  Canadiens  has been well-established (see Brierley 163-84),  it should be pointed out that the dramatized version of the novel, Archibald Locheill,  ou un episode  de la Guerre  de Sept Ans  Cameron  of  (adapted by Joseph-Camille Caisse and  Pierre-Arcade Laporte for the college stage, first performed in 1865, and popular "well  97  into the twentieth century" [Doucette 26]), also by necessity simplifies or even eliminates the various subtexts o f the book.  7  Aubert de Gaspe, in offering a passionate work o f scholarship as well as a historical novel leisurely told, may have wished to prevent his inventory from becoming a collection o f mere local exotica (a very legitimate concern, as the later commodification o f the book as a tourist fetish o f sorts indicates). He may also have wanted to lend additional dignity to the plight o f the French-Canadians by placing it within the context o f international literature, and prefacing individual chapters with epigraphs taken from a wide range o f literary sources, among them Horace, V i r g i l , Cervantes, Chateaubriand, Chamfort, Chenedolle, Bernardin de St. Pierre, Young, Shakespeare, Sterne, Burns, Gibbon, Tennyson, Byron, Scott, Goethe, and Heine. The strong presence o f British authors, generally cited in the original English, has led Rainier Grutman to suspect that Aubert de Gaspe's declared loyalty towards French-Canadian culture is disingenuous and that his preference for Scott, Tennyson, and others, confirms not only that books in English were more easily available and more widely distributed than those i n French, but that his political convictions were as "surannes" as his reading (Grutman 123). Grutman argues that even the classical authors cited in the epigraphs (and throughout the novel) are evidence o f Aubert de Gaspe's anglophile cultural preferences, because "sans etre immediatement associe avec la tradition francaise, 1'epopee romaine parait plutot coloree par l'usage qui en a ete fait dans les lettres anglaises, ou elle est percue comme une schema explicateur de la saga ecossaise" (121). Grutman omits, however, the considerable impact o f some British authors, such as Scott and Cooper, not to mention Shakespeare, on nineteenth-century French authors. If the classical allusions i n Les  Anciens Canadiens indeed confirm British influence on the book (a questionable assumption to begin with), it could just as easily be argued that British authors had been "colores" by their absorption into French and French-Canadian literature before Aubert de Gaspe even used them. Indeed, Grutman is implicitly conflating English-language texts with a political preference for "les Anglais," but a Scot (as is clearly the case with the character Archibald de Locheill) and an American as literary models do not automatically run contrary to a French-Canadian agenda. The sociology o f reading underlying Grutman's argument, although thought-provoking, is not sufficiently attuned to the full range o f "heterolinguisme" available in nineteenth-century French-Canadian historical fiction in general and in Aubert de Gaspe's novel in particular. In a book preoccupied with characters whose allegiances are not easily classified and with political programs that are at war with each other even while proclaiming peace, it seems important to apply the same caution in "reading" the author. In keeping with a nineteenth-century woman writer's need to legitimize her enterprise by drawing on other, usually male, authorities (see Stevenson 65; Ferris 126), Owenson's annotations tend to be more deferential than Aubert de Gaspe's. Aubert de Gaspe cites himself more frequently as a source on historical and other matters related to his book. B y contrast, Owenson generally draws on written sources and experts such as Joseph Cooper Walker, "the leading authority on the Irish bards and ancient Irish costume" (Stevenson 71), to whom she had obtained an introduction through A l i c i a Lefanu, sister o f the dramatist Richard Brinsley Sheridan. Owenson promptly earned censure for her troubles, much o f it distinctly misogynist. In her memoirs, she relates how at a soiree organized by the Dowager Countess o f Cork and Orrery she sat "the  99  lioness o f the night! Exhibited and shown off like 'the beautiful hyena that never was tamed,' . . . looking almost as wild, and feeling quite as savage!" only to find herself addressed by one o f the illustrious guests in the following manner: "Little girl, why did you write such nonsense? A n d where did you get all these damned hard words?" Owenson responded that "[she] wrote as well as [she] could, and . . . got the hard words out o f Dr. Johnson's dictionary" (quoted in Stevenson 105, 107). In retrospect, she may have been able to muster the irony that she describes here, but her biography is full o f incidents in which she spends great amounts o f energy proving to her critics that, despite her intellectual pursuits, she is "every inch a woman" (quoted i n Stevenson 58) and no slovenly blue-stocking, but an author who receives her guests in a "drawing-room perfumed by a jar din o f fresh flowers" (quoted in Stevenson 242). The Wild Irish Girl applies the same caution to Glorvina whose bookishness initially alarms Horatio ("I fear however that this girl is already spoiled by the species o f education she has received. The priest has more than once spoken o f her erudition. Erudition!  The pedantry o f a  schoolboy o f the third class, I suppose. H o w much must a woman lose, and how little can she gain, by that commutation which gives her our acquirements for her o w n graces! For my part, you know I have always kept clear o f the bas-bleus; and would prefer one playful charm o f a Ninon, to all the classic lore o f a Dacier" [56]), before he is presented with plenty o f evidence that, in discussions with her elders, she defers to them as he clearly thinks she should, besotted though he is with her. L i k e Aubert de Gaspe, Owenson too attempts to counterbalance the restrictions o f the narrative mode she has chosen for The Wild Irish Girl, namely the epistolary novel, by providing a plethora o f painstakingly documented historical, social, and aesthetic  100  information. Her description o f the clothes worn by the Prince o f Inismore, for example, bristles with the italicized terminology that signals ethnographic precision: [t]he drapery which covered this striking figure was singularly appropriate, and, as I have since been told, strictly conformable to the ancient costume o f the Irish nobles. The only part o f the under garment visible, was the ancient Irish truis, which closely adhering to the limbs from the waist to the ancle [sic], includes the pantaloon and hose, and terminates in a kind o f buskin, not dissimilar to the Roman perones.  (145)  This description comes with the Note that "[t]he Irish mantle, with the fringed or shagged borders sewed down the edges o f it, was not always made o f frize and such coarse materials, which was the dress o f the lower sort o f people, but, according to the rank and quality o f the wearer, was sometimes made o f the finest cloth, bordered with silken fringe o f scarlet, and various colours" (145). Ferris has suggested that the presence o f these Notes splits Owenson's novel into two irreconcileable texts, one preoccupied with "the private world o f sensibility," and the other with the author's "cultural and political ambitions" (125). However, the discourses o f these two texts are in fact intertwined throughout, and the "ambitions" o f the Notes (their "program" would be a better term) shift into the main narrative, while the "private world o f sensibility" is on occasion transferred into the Notes where it acquires a "public dimension" (125). For example, Horatio is employed by the Prince to teach Glorvina sketching. Instead, she begins to teach him Gaelic, and both the Prince and the priest provide him with thorough instruction in the history and culture o f Ireland. N o r do they indulge in sentimental nostalgia, but consistently draw his attention to the political interests that make  101  documents disappear and folksongs vanish. When, on cue, Horatio asks how Ireland can lay claim to antiquity when few records are available to support such aspirations, the priest informs him in language that would not be out of place in a contemporary text o f post-colonial criticism: "[mjanuscripts, annals, and records, are not the treasures o f a colonized or a conquered c o u n t r y f ; ] . . . it is always the policy o f the conqueror (or the invader) to destroy these mementos o f ancient national splendour which keep alive the spirit of the conquered or the invaded" (172). In addition to the teaching relationships that cross over between the Notes and the main text, the epistolary format also helps to expand the horizons of the book. Both Ferris and Brophy find that Owenson does little to put the technical possibilities of the epistolary novel to the test, and it is certainly true that The Wild Irish sophistication of Clarissa,  Les Liaisons  dangereuses,  Girl  lacks the  or Charles Maturin's The Wild  Irish  Boy in which the voices of numerous letter-writers interweave to produce complex points-of-view. The book, however, is not merely "a ribbon o f first-person narrative chopped into letter lengths" (Brophy viii) either. When he settles in with the Inismores, Horatio observes that for people who live in some isolation, the Prince and his small entourage write and receive an astonishing amount o f mail. Part of this information is linked to a complication in the romantic plot (Glorvina receives letters from Lord M — who, unbeknownst to his son, is competing for her affections), but there is also an implication that Inismore and the priest may be in communication with supporters both in Ireland and abroad. (In his lecture about the significance o f archives as part o f a people's collective memory, the priest suggests that papers have been stored for safekeeping as far away as Denmark, France and the Vatican.)  102  Furthermore, as Horatio addresses his letters to "J.D. Esq. M . P . , " it may be argued that, as an ensemble, they function as documents that pass on the results o f his own instruction in Celtic history and lore to an individual who is in a position to translate it into political action. In other words, these are public letters with an educational intention, and technical sophistication i n handling the epistolary format would only muddy the issue. Tellingly, at least two editions (the Pandora edition and the [unidentified] edition from which it is reprinted) omit the opening exchange o f letters between Horatio and L o r d M — , and Horatio and his friend, which-among other things-draw attention to " J . D.s" political office. Like the omission o f the Notes in English translations o f Les Anciens Canadiens, the result o f this abridgement is to make the novel less o f a public statement than it was intended to be. It is particularly disturbing that this lacuna should appear in the feminist Pandora edition, and that Dale Spender, the editor o f the series, and Brigid Brophy, the author o f the introduction to this edition, apparently were not even aware that the crucial early section had been eliminated.  Departures  Many o f the historical events discussed i n these novels unleashed migrations, both voluntary and involuntary, o f large numbers o f people. The penal laws o f 1655 and 1699 restricted the Irish export o f cattle, milk, butter, cheese and woolen goods, thus limiting crucial sources o f income. Although the 1798 uprisings do not appear to have accelerated emigration, half a million Irish made their way to North America by the  103  1850s, particularly in the wake of the Great Famine of the 1840s. The effects o f Culloden were equally dramatic: the abolishment of the clan system left Highlanders deprived of the social systems they were used to, but also freed them to seek new places in which to start afresh, especially since rent increases made it impossible for many o f them to make a living in their homeland. Emigration became a necessity even for the better situated among them. Indeed, the trauma o f some o f these departures lingers in recent Canadian literature, including in the phenomenally successful work of Alistair M c L e o d , especially his novel No Great every  living  thing  C B C ' s Canada:  Mischief  (2000), and the memoir the desire  of  (1999) by D o n Gillmor (who, incidentally, also collaborated on the A People's  History,  as I w i l l discuss i n my Conclusion).  Departure to the N e w World did not protect emigrants from finding themselves at the mercy o f imperialist conflicts o f interest. " L e grand derangement," the Deportation of the Acadians from what is now N o v a Scotia and N e w Brunswick, was the result o f extended English-French hostility in both the old and the new world. In Bourassa's Jacques  et Marie,  the individual episodes in this power struggle are painstakingly  documented at the beginning o f each section. Bourassa quotes from French historian Edme Rameau de Saint-Pere's work La France  aux colonies  discussion of Acadian history, and from Garneau's Histoire  (1859), which includes a du Canada.  Indeed,  Bourassa's novel may be understood as part o f an increasingly systematic effort, from the 1830s onwards, to record the history o f the Acadians and to assert their presence in a way that would make such events as the Deportation difficult to repeat. Thus, Acadians elected members to the legislatures of N o v a Scotia, N e w Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island in the 1840s and 50s; the Saint-Thomas seminary, the first francophone institution  104  of higher learning in the area, was opened i n 1854, and in 1867 a newspaper, Le Acadien,  Moniteur  was founded in Shediac, N e w Brunswick. Bourassa, however, also emphatically relies on historical works in English, such  as Thomas Chandler Haliburton's studies, especially the two-volume An Historical Statistical  Account  of Nova  Joseph Bouchette's British Documents  Relative  Scotia  (1823), John McGregor's British  Dominions  to the Colonial  in North History  America  of the State  America  and  (1832),  (1832), and J.R. Brodhead's of New  York  (1853-1857).  Publishing his novel shortly before Confederation, Bourassa claims i n his Prologue that he is not interested in "fabriquer des machines de discorde" (30). Yet his insistence on historical sources in English is clearly strategic and designed to allow the other side to hang themselves by their own ropes. Adopting the suspiciously modest pose that also characterizes Aubert de Gaspe's introduction to Les Anciens  Canadiens,  Bourassa avers:  "je ne dirai rien de plus que ce qui a ete dit par Haliburton et les ecrivains de la NouvelleAngleterre: ce livre sera un episode historique, rien de plus" (30). For the most part, in the introductory sections providing an overview o f the historical events unfolding i n individual sections of the novel, Bourassa maintains a studied objectivity, enhanced by the supporting evidence in his Notes, and expressions o f emotion are largely reserved for the fictional episodes involving his two protagonists, Jacques and Marie. Occasionally, however, the situation that he relates becomes too outrageous to maintain this separation of discourses, and scholarly documentation erupts into the fictional narrative as i f to forestall the reader's disbelief. Describing the cattle's return to a deserted and burning village, for example, Bourassa comments that "Haliburton dit qu'elles resterent ainsi,  105  pendant plusieurs jours, clouees sur ces chores mines, sans songer a retoumer au paturage ou a l'abreuvoir" (268). In discussing some o f the ways in which Bourassa translates historical "departures" into fiction, I would like to take a cue from his book and begin with a brief synopsis o f the events leading up to the Deportation in order to illustrate just how extensively the fate o f the Acadian colonists was bound up with decisions made, in sometimes dizzying sequence, on the other side o f the Atlantic, frequently with inadequate consultation between the "home-office" and its overseas representations.  The  Treaty o f Utrecht, which ended the War o f the Spanish Succession (1701-13), ceded the territory to the English, but France attempted to protect its interests by concentrating on the He Saint-Jean (Prince Edward Island) and the He Royale (Cape Breton) and constructing the fortress o f Louisbourg. Acadians attempted to accommodate themselves to the situation by agreeing to an oath o f neutrality rather than an oath o f unconditional loyalty, an arrangement o f which Governor Richard Philips appears not to have properly informed his government, thus contributing through carelessness to the tragic developments that ensued. Louisbourg fell into the hands o f the English in 1745, but was returned to France following the Treaty o f Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748. In order to strengthen their strategic presence, the English moved the capital o f the N o v a Scotian territories from Annapolis Royal to Halifax and thus closer to both Europe and Boston, as well as settling approximately 7000 British colonists in the area in order to counterbalance the presence o f the Acadians. The English and French competed in building forts that would protect crucial lines o f communication: the construction, by the French, o f Fort Beausejour in 1750 was followed by the erection o f Fort Lawrence, by  106  the English, in the same year. Both were meant to protect the Baie de Chignectou, an important connective between strategically sensitive areas. B y 1755, however, more drastic measures seemed to be required to prevent what the English perceived as a fifth column, and a renewed refusal o f the Acadians to swear an oath o f unconditional allegiance was used as a pretext first to declare the entire population prisoners and then to deport them, a process which continued into 1762. In order to make the trauma inflicted on Acadians comprehensible, this recital o f historical vicissitudes must be complemented with an evocation o f the very special type o f community that characterized Acadia. Largely descended from the Poitou region in France, the Acadians had developed through five generations into highly self-reliant and close-knit agricultural communities. Early settlers in the area were ill-adapted to the inclement climate and plagued by disease and starvation, but once they had learned to reclaim marshland through an elaborate system o f dykes (not to mention learning to adapt to their harsh environment by imitating the ways o f the indigenous Micmac population), Acadians prospered and developed a strongly defined sense o f group identity. The combination o f their faith in the French monarchy and in the legitimacy o f Roman Catholicism as unassailable principles, together with the isolation o f their villages from communities that were differently constituted, furthermore provided them with a remarkable sense o f independence and the determination to resist any authority that would persuade them otherwise. Bourassa is leisurely and affectionate in his descriptions o f Grand-Pre village life, and the time he regularly devotes to intimate, personal scenes contrasts sharply with the increasing urgency produced by the historical sections discussed above. Thus, the  107  narrative backtracks in part one, when Jacques's family have already left the village, to tell the story o f the young couple's courtship, o f the time Jacques fed Marie strawberries and how, in slapping a mosquito along with "le fruit inoffensif" (50), she provided h i m with the opportunity to explore her face, especially " l a partie la plus arrondie du menton" (50). Elsewhere, Marie recites her plans for her married household to her mother, and her eager catalogue outlines the traditional way o f life which, at this point, she still expects to pursue with her fiance: [e]t Marie continue, pendant deux heures, ce chapelet de phrases detachees. Quand le pere Landry vint l'interrompre, elle avait deja fait toutes ses invitations pour le mariage, prepare le diner de noces, dispose sa toilette, monte et demonte sa maison plusieurs fois, fait dix pieces de toile, autant de flanelle, eleve cinquante douzaines de poules, battu mille livres de beurre, fait baptiser ses deux aines, un garcon et une fllle qui s'appelaient Jacques et Marie; Marie ressemblait a sa grand'maman. (54) In these digressions in particular, Bourassa draws on his experience as a painter, carefully sketching out the colours and contours o f the scene to make them linger in the reader's mind, thus building up a strong sense o f sympathy with the characters for those episodes o f the book when they do duty as allegorical figureheads. For example, when Marie appears at the scene o f the deportation wearing the wedding-dress and orange-blossom crown from her trousseau, she is an allegory o f Acadia whose trust in her English suitor has been cruelly betrayed. A t the same time, however, Bourassa has been careful to tell the reader enough about her youthful dreams to show that a very personal promise has been broken.  108  From the beginning, then, Bourassa maintains a balance between reciting the numerous indignities that Acadians had to suffer at the hands o f the English, and documenting the resilience derived from their traditional ways and sustaining them through even the most draconian measures taken to ensure their dispersal. Indeed, its Christian rhetoric notwithstanding, the book provides Acadians with an immediate revenge that can be read as a therapeutic substitute for the one they were unable to perform in history: having escaped from his threatened execution at the hands o f the English, Jacques joins his friends in burning down the presbytery in which the soldiers are engaged in a debauched banquet celebrating the Deportation. Similarly, Bourassa counterbalances a series o f historical letters detailing the orders for the Deportation with fictional ones that, after some initial complication, provide his characters with the agency to prove their superior mettle. Indeed, there was much to make up for. In order to ensure that their own interests be maintained, the English under Winslow considered it essential that Acadians' spirit o f independence be crushed, by making sure that their communities would be so thoroughly destroyed that they would not be able to reconstitute them readily even in exile. Not only were their homes burnt and their lands confiscated to ensure that they had nothing to return to should they somehow manage to make their way back, but many families were deliberately separated and forced to embark on ships bound for different destinations. A s the fleet left Minas Basin i n late October, the seas were rough, and several ships sank. M a n y passengers, particularly the elderly, did not survive the voyage, as there were outbreaks o f smallpox and onset o f malnutrition. Acadians were relocated in an area reaching from Massachussetts to Georgia. W i t h some exceptions, they were i l l received,  109  derided, or even refused entry, because the authorities had not sufficiently coordinated the operation. Between 1755 and 1763, between 10,000 and 12,000 people were deported (see Arsenault). N o r was this exodus the end o f their tribulations: after the Treaty o f Paris in 1763, Acadians-now widely dispersed-were given eighteen months to leave the English colonies. Those who had been taken as far away as England were relocated in France, large numbers settled in Louisiana, while others yet agreed to take the oath o f allegiance and returned to their original places o f settlement along the St. Lawrence, where they joined up with individuals who had escaped the deportation, in founding new communities. In other words, it is virtually impossible to count the precise number o f enforced "departures" that Acadians had to endure within a decade or so. One result o f the publication, in 1846, o f H . W . Longfellow's poem Evangeline, was to foster, especially through its numerous translations into French, the imaginative revival o f Acadia. A t the same time, however, the romanticism o f the poem also generated a nostalgic cult which was easy to exploit in tourism and commercial advertising both in the United States and in Canada, thus deflecting a great deal o f attention from the appalling historical events that produced the story in the first place (see Griffiths 28-41, and Coates and Morgan). Although Jacques et Marie is by no means free o f the quietist romanticism o f Longfellow's famous poem, the book can still be something o f a shock to the modern reader precisely because it has been so much less worn down into a tourist commodity; indeed, the book appears to be virtually unknown now. Throughout, Bourassa draws parallels between the fate o f the Acadians and other historical and mythic events, with the intention o f creating a point o f reference for their otherwise unimaginable fate: in order to give a sense o f the magnitude o f their suffering,  110  he variously alludes to the Odyssey, the Aeneid, to the crucifixion, and to the early Christian martyrs. He also uses such comparisons to expose the English as regressive in their cruelty and far more barbaric than the ancient Romans: "[d]ans l'antiquite, c'etait un crime de ravir aux exiles leurs penates; et un peuple moderne a pu en chasser tout un autre sans lui laisser emporter les plus humbles souvenirs de leurs foyers!" (265). Indeed, to the modern reader, the details o f the deportation—the separation o f men and women, old and young, the destruction o f their homes and families, and the overall betrayal o f trust—can produce very uncomfortable parallels to more recent events i n European and North American history, such as the internment o f Japanese Canadians and Americans; the deportation o f the Jews to concentration camps; North America's failure, on some occasions, to provide a haven for mcoming ships o f refugees; and the massive displacements o f Eastern Europeans from their homes as a result o f World War II. Bourassa was born in L ' A c a d i e , Lower Canada, in 1827 into a community which had reconstituted itself after the Treaty o f Paris "comme viennent les debris d'un naufrage": [d]es peres qui avaient eu des families nombreuses arriverent avec quelques-uns de leurs enfants, ou avec ceux de leurs voisins seulement; des jeunes filles, parties avec leurs vieux parents, se rendirent avec les parents des autres; un homme qui comptait plusieurs freres parvint au terme de la route avec deux ou trois neveux: i l n'entendit jamais parler de ceux qui etaient restes en arriere; quelques amis, quelques allies reussirent a se rejoindre a differents intervalles, mais cela tut rare. U n jeune homme  Ill  qui s'etait fait marin parvint a recueillir plusieurs des siens disperses sur differents ravages. (28). The "Prologue," as the operiing frame o f the book, illustrates how, the efforts o f the British notwithstanding, the Acadian community has not been destroyed because the size o f and loyalty among the dispersed families are such that an extensive fostering system has virtually replaced them: the ships o f the British may have taken them away from their homelands, but they have survived the "shipwreck" o f their existence. The book closes at approximately the same period and in the same place as those suggested in the Prologue, with the funeral o f Marie's father and Jacques's and Marie's marriage, the latter much delayed by events. Like the patchwork families in the Prologue, the funeral serves to assure the reader that order can be restored but, because it does so on the occasion o f a final "departure," it proceeds with poignant ambivalence. The procession accompanying Father Landry to his grave proceeds in orderly formation: the casket is borne by "les vieillards les plus vigoureux de la communaute" (357), followed by Jacques and Marie, and a l l o f their neighbours. After the burial, some linger to read the names on other graves to find that the cemetery has become a gathering-place for Acadians from widely separated villages: "[n]e a Beau-Basin, ne a Grand-Pre, ne a Port-Royal, ne a f i l e StJean..." (357). In an extension o f the "chapelet" outlining M a r i e ' s imagined married life in her community, Bourassa uses processions to juxtapose a way o f life that proceeds in harmony with the seasons and the natural environment, with a situation where this order has been horribly destroyed, and he increases the intensity generated by the resulting contrast until it reaches its ultimate crescendo in the deportation scene. In the midst o f  112  growing tension, for example, and with the English looking on, the people o f Grand-Pre celebrate the harvest by gathering "autour de la plus belle charrette" on which they display in triumph some o f their finest produce. Decorated with garlands o f leaves and drawn by two splendid oxen, the cart is accompanied by members o f the community "chantant des couplets populaires" (111). Despite this bucolic splendour, however, some inhabitants o f Grand-Pre have already grown sufficiently nervous about the situation to leave into voluntary exile. Thus, the Hebert family, M a r i e ' s fiance included, have left Grand-Pre for the shores o f the Missagouache, i n order to resettle on land that remains in the hands o f the French. O n their way to the boats taking them away, the family proceeds in orderly formation. Following Hebert, " c h e f and father o f fourteen children, are, in descending order, "les fils et les brus, la mere, les filles et les nombreux representants d'une troisieme generation" (41). The discipline o f this "cortege" is belied by the motley assortment o f household implements that the family's members carry away into their voluntary exile. Indeed, the narrator compares the indignity o f the operation to that o f a poorly attended funeral. The funeral trope gains in intensity i n chapter thirteen, much o f which is given over to a detailed description o f the deportation, in which the men leave the church (desecrated as a military arsenal) in which they have been imprisoned, and formation after formation is lined up, none o f them respectful o f the bonds that tie the community together: alors commenca le triage des jeunes et des vieux . . . les gardes . . . separerent les enfants d'avec leurs peres, comme le maitre d'un troupeau separe les agneaux q u ' i l envoie a differents marches. Les malheureux  113  crurent que c'etait tout simplement une mesure d'ordre et de precaution[;] . . . [l]es jeunes gens furent mis a l'avant, distribute par rangs de six, et les vieillards, places a leur suite, dans le meme ordre, attendirent avec calme le signal du colonel pour s'acheminer vers la cote. (259-60) The patriarchal order that informs the procession o f family members following Father Hebert to the boats is here taken to a horribly logical conclusion: separated by age, the men are herded onto the first two ships (the aged "chefs" having to cede first place to their younger, and therefore more dangerous, sons) while the women and children are crowded in as "remplissage" (263). Several times, the situation o f the deported is compared to that o f cattle or sheep. The parallel is meant to be demeaning, but it also alludes to the destruction o f a way o f life in which animals had reason to trust their owners. Indeed, in a scene reminiscent o f a similar one in Evangeline (which, most likely, Longfellow borrowed from Haliburton), the animals linger near the village even after it has been abandoned, and it is easy for some fugitives to avail themselves o f four fat lambs because Marie has given them pet names and taught them to come running when they are called. Given the extensive destruction o f the original Acadian communities, it is not surprising that so much o f Acadian literature should have been preoccupied with the recovery o f a widely dispersed heritage, and that contemporary writers have sometimes found it difficult to move away from the theme o f a golden past destroyed by the deportation in 1755. Until the late 1950s, historical, biographical, genealogical, and linguistic research were motivated by an encyclopedic desire, typical o f peoples who have experienced dispersal and fear a possible repetition, to produce written records that  114  would make a second attempted destruction o f collective memory more difficult. During that period, fiction, poetry, and theatre all dwelled on the patriotic and religious dimensions of the deportation and its aftermath, as well as providing an outlet through which it was possible to relive the trauma as long as it was necessary to do so.  Criticism o f travel writing has recently begun to include the writing of refugees and migrants. See, for example, Suleiman. Haliburton may have inspired only fiction with a Maritime setting with his account and may therefore be o f limited interest for this study, but his role in the circulation o f ideas between North America and Europe is considerable and deserves another look in the context of recent work on the historical novel. Haliburton was suspicious o f the advantages to be gained from association with the British Empire (or, for that matter, any empire) because it had little to offer in return for the loyalty o f its colonial subjects. The Letter-Bag of the Great Western, Or Life in a Steamer (1840) uses the traditional allegory of the ship as a microcosm o f society to comment on colonial life as "radically heterogeneous and rootless . . . with nothing holding it together; the boat's passengers, indeed, include emigrants who remain so restless they 'cannot settle' and instead migrate constantly between settler colonies," a restlessness enhanced, as Haliburton's The Old Judge, Or Life in Colony (1849) suggests, by "the interchangeability of postings . . . which renders impossible the development o f a colonial national character" (Trumpener 276). This view is a far cry from the perception o f emigration as a one-way street which dominates 1970s criticism o f Canadian literature and which is responsible for some o f the distortions to which books popular during that period were subjected, including 1  2  Wacousta.  Three years after the publication o f The Wild Irish Girl, W i l l i a m Combe published the first of several parodies of the cult of the picturesque, The Tour of Dr Syntax in Search of the Picturesque (1809), thus indicating that the cults of the picturesque and sublime had indeed run their course. Grant A l l e n ' s account of the mingling o f Teuton and Celt in the British national character is enacted as Horatio's metropolitan speech encounters Glorvina's music. A l l e n writes that "[i]n our complex nationality the Teuton has contributed in large part the muscle, the thews, the hard-headed organization, the law, the stability, the iron hand; but the Celt has added the lightness, airiness, imagination, wonder, the sense o f beauty and o f mystery, the sadness, the sweetness." A s a matter o f interest, A l l e n was a bestselling Canadian author of fiction and a book on travel, The European Guidebook (1899). His work stems from Matthew Arnold, whose On the Study of Celtic Literature (1866) cause Oxford University to establish a Chair o f Celtic Studies. See Arnold i n Super. 3  4  115  In her characterization o f Horatio, Owenson achieves a similar effect to that described by Ian Duncan with respect to Scott: "Scott's novels," he argues, "rewrite the historical private subject in terms already feminine; there follow two familiar effects. First: masculine subjection is composed upon, and consoled by, a further, secondary and supplementary (but actually primary), feminine subjection. Secondly, and accordingly: the character o f this representative, dominant-class male subjectivity, even at its private and essential level o f gender, is constituted by the same kinds o f ('feminine') hesitancy, ambiguity and irrationality that define its ethical problematic, in the theme o f national 5  political allegiance" (Modern  Romance  54).  Aubert de Gaspe, in describing the young men's shoes, omits to comment in any detail on the Iroquois beadwork (or, for that matter, on the implications o f the beaver trade for Native peoples) - one example among many in these books where "others" outside o f the two opposing groups with which the authors are preoccupied (Irish/English, Scottish/English, Anglo-Canadian/Franco-Canadian) are either ignored or disparaged. A recent exhibition at Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum, entitled "Across Borders: Beadwork in Iroquois L i f e " provides information to show that the historical Iroquois were not as passively subsumed into Canadian nationalist discourse as Aubert de Gaspe might lead the uncritical reader to believe. See Conlogue. Another play worth noting in this context is Laurent-Olivier David's Le Drapeau de Carillon (1901). David, who supported Wilfrid Laurier's efforts to establish a "bonne entente" between English and French Canadians, produced in Captain Murray (modeled, as David explained, on the historical General Janies Murray) "a positive portrayal o f a member o f the enemy forces [thatjwas unprecedented on the French-Canadian stage" (Rewa 129). 6  7  116  Chapter Three Failed Marriages, Broken Promises, and Menages a Trois  Mothers and Fathers Jonathan Swift, writing in "The Story o f an Injured Lady, Being a True Picture o f Scotch Perfidy, Irish Poverty and English Partiality" (1706; publ. 1748), depicts the relationship between England, Scotland, and Ireland as one o f a lover between two jealous mistresses. The man intends to make an honest woman out o f one o f them, an allusion to the allegedly more favourable terms that Scotland had received for its U n i o n with England. Each o f the three partners in this eternal triangle occupies a separate house, although these "stood pretty near one another," parted only by a river (that is, the Irish Sea) and "an old broken w a l l " (that is, Hadrian's Wall). The menage is described in terms o f the complicated arrangements in a large, hierarchical household with outlying buildings, including a Stewart (that is, "Stuart") who is given autonomy over Lady Ireland's house, and servants whose wages she must pay, "even those (the absentee landlords) who remain living with [the seducer]" (see Trumpener 133).  1  Equally elaborate is the updated allegory in the satirical publication The AntiUnion  (1798-99) a century later, in which "Sheelagh" finds herself forced into marriage  with John B u l l , an unsavoury elderly gentleman who has "another wife still l i v i n g " (Trumpener 134). B u l l uses servants to spy on "Sheelagh" and rob her, and he insists that some servants dress in green and some in orange liveries. This story was followed a fortnight later with another in The Anti-Union,  in which Britton, encouraged by "[h]is  117  ambitious steward Henry" (Trumpener 135) rapes Ierne and forces her into concubinage. 2  However, Ierne learns to love her violator, they have a large family, and Britton finally resolves to make the union legitimate. Further domestic complications ensue when Britton's "ward, Columbia, elopes to America with a Frenchman" (Trumpener 135) followed by another seduction plot involving Ierne and a younger brother o f Columbia's seducer, who tries to remind her o f past unhappiness and thus turn her against Britton. Misunderstandings between Britton and Ierne cause further tension and, although they are formally reconciled, their relationship remains fraught: [t]he loving, ardent, faithful wife had vanished; and the injured, abject, cold and reluctant slave remained. Love was for ever fled. She returned not caresses which she loathed, and submitted to, rather than participated[.]... M r . Britton, conscious that he could not be loved, precipitated into the usual corruption o f the human heart, and determined that he should be feared, (quoted in Trumpener 136) I have deliberately paraphrased these stories at some length to illustrate how literalminded they can be when they deploy the marriage trope in order to illustrate the complications o f political alliance and ethnic hostility. I concur with Trumpener that, particularly in the last example, the story moves from allegory to "female domestic tragedy" (136), that is, to the complex psychological plots o f rape and seduction in Samuel Richardson's Pamela  (1741) and Clarissa  (1747-8). Swift's allegory, however,  is very concrete as well in its evocation o f unsavoury domestic arrangements, and attends to all practical aspects o f the scene, marital relations and household management included. Such stories illustrate yet again just how fluid the boundaries between genres  118  were in the eighteenth century and continued to be into the nineteenth, although resolute measures were undertaken by early nineteenth-century educators to pen them into the respective domains o f writing and orality, and o f male and female guardianship. A s we have seen in the discussion o f critical response to Edgeworth and particularly Owenson, book reviewers were a vociferous and powerful lobby among these educators. Focusing on the case o f Scotland, Penny Fielding has described the complicated negotiations that went with these efforts at compartmentalization and the nationalist arguments that they were meant to support.  4  Suitably, Fielding uses the trope o f conquest to characterize the  process o f channeling "illiterate writing," that is, writing considered unduly linked to orality, when she writes: "[a]s a way o f combating illiterate writing, the educationalists ventured into enemy territory, pursuing a policy o f containment carried out by means o f a process o f colonization in which popular forms could be appropriated and controlled by being imitated" (35). Fielding anticipates Trumpener's work on the changing function o f nurses and servants as serving, first, as repositories o f popular wisdom and story-telling, and then as dangerously corrupting influences on young minds in need o f enlightened literacy (see Fielding 24 et passim; Trumpener 193-241). Included in these dangerously "oral" influences, in both the metaphorical and the physical sense, were the mothers who could not be trusted to instil the manly qualities required by an aspiring nation. This suspicion carries into several o f the novels under discussion where mothers are either dead or might as well be invisible, a feature that is particularly startling in books like The Wild Irish Girl, which was written by a woman (who, as we have seen, found herself vilified by book reviewers for her "barrenness") and which has, ironically, since been marketed in a feminist series called "Mothers o f the N o v e l . " In Owenson's  119  novel, one particularly startling moment occurs when the "decent old man" looking after Horatio's lodge informs h i m that the Prince o f Inismore "keeps up the old Irish customs and dress, letting nobody eat at the same table as his daughter, not even his lady when she was alive." The note that goes with this piece o f information, has this to say: " M ' D e r m o t , Prince o f Coolavin, never suffered his wife to sit at table with him; although his daughter was permitted to that honour, as she was descended from the royal family o f the O'Connor'' (30-1). Here, the note clarifies that what one might initially take to be an 1  old man's eccentric habit, one vaguely following "the old Irish customs," is in fact an expression o f systemic gender hierarchy. B y extension, the note offers a reading o f the father-daughter relationship as overriding that between husband and wife because, unlike the mother, the daughter is a descendant and heir and therefore a sort o f honorary son.  5  Not only is Glorvina's mother deceased and therefore no longer required to be kept away from the dinner-table, but the nurse who accompanies Glorvina wherever she goes, is habitually cast as an object o f ridicule so "fantastic and outre, that the genius o f masquerade might have adopted her figure as the finest model o f caricature" (40). Glorvina clearly has become the beautiful and learned woman that she is because the Prince and the priest have taken her education in hand. A t the end o f the book, the nurse is nowhere in sight. A s the Prince o f Inismore dies and passes his legacy on to Glorvina, she is advised by Father John and mentored by her future husband (now reformed into a fine specimen o f responsible manhood) and his father who "had loved the venerable Prince as a brother and a friend" (245). A s far as I can tell, we have not once heard o f Lady M — .  120  Although Rose Bradwardine's father is a lovable old fool in w h o m erudition has become fussy antiquarianism, her relationship with her parents closely resembles Glorvina's with hers: one o f the few mementoes o f Rose's dead mother is a picture in her daughter's room in which the Baroness appears " i n the dress o f a shepherdess, with a bell-hoop" (110). Flora M c l v o r alerts Waverley to the fact that Rose's future husband " w i l l be to her what her father now is—the object o f all her care, solicitude, and affection. She w i l l see nothing, and connect herself with nothing, but by h i m and through him.  If he is a man o f sense o f virtue, she w i l l sympathise in his sorrows, divert his  fatigue, and share his pleasures" (183). In order to correct the indifferent education that Baron Bradwardine has made available to his daughter, Flora undertakes to teach Rose herself, "and was attentive to assist her in her studies, and to fashion both her taste and understanding" (367). In her independence o f mind and action, fortified by her close bond with her rebellious brother, with w h o m at times she becomes virtually interchangeable, Flora has-as Waverley understands them—distinctly masculine attributes, and she confirms her independent status by choosing celibacy and entering a convent after her brother's execution. Even when the mothers are alive, they are often exposed as too ignorant to oversee the kind o f education their daughters require i f they are to be burdened with the duty o f becoming their father's ideological heirs (or should it be fathers', to accommodate the numerous stand-ins?) In The Golden  Dog,  a novel obsessed from  beginning to end with the institution o f matrimony, "Dame Bedard, the sharp landlady o f the C r o w n o f France," calls in "Master Pothier . . . the travelling notary" (40) to draw up the marriage contract for her daughter Zoe, who is unable to comprehend it because she  121  has only received "a tincture o f learning in the day schools o f the nuns" (82). Kirby is careful to disparage the notary as "one o f that unuseful order o f itinerants o f the law, which flourished under the old regime in N e w France" (40) and to refer to the document he has devised as a "crabbed law text" and a "sea o f legal verbiage" (82), but in a book which consistently uses the shortcomings o f N e w France to extol the accomplishments o f the British rule that followed it, he is perhaps less concerned to insist that greater attention w i l l be paid to the education o f women under British government than he is to anticipate the improved quality o f the British legal system. The profound irony implied in even making this distinction between the law and women's educational status surely need not be pointed out. Even more blunt about women's lack o f education and their resultant limited usefulness in determining national identity is Bourassa's Jacques  et Marie,  where  Madame Landry, mother o f eighteen children, puts an enormous pair o f spectacles on her nose "qui brillaient devant la flamme comme des oeils-de-boeuf de cathedrale au soleil couchant" in preparation for reading Gordon's letter to her husband. The exercise turns into a first-grader's reading exercise supervised by an increasingly impatient teacher, with M a r i e ' s mother stumbling over words like "colonel" ("c, o, co...c, o, co...de notre coco, que j ' a i p u obtenir de notre coco...") and "vaisseaux" ("des bais...des bestiaux.. .des vessies, des vais..."), and having to refresh herself with a glass o f water because she is exhausted after reading out an entire paragraph "sans obstacles." Bourassa manages to insert a phonetic lesson when Madame Landry puzzles over the word "coeur," until it becomes apparent to her that what is meant here is the word she is accustomed to pronouncing as "tieur" (199-200), but I disagree with Roger L e Moine,  122  who reads this and other scenes in the book as mere comic relief (Napoleon 104).  Bourassa  The dismissiveness with which both Pere Landry and the author o f the book  respond to Madame Landry at this point is all the more worth noting as formal education was poorly developed in 1755 Acadia, a factor which resulted in the paucity o f written records that would have assisted in reconstructing the society after the dispersal. The nineteenth-century revival o f Acadian culture, by contrast, strongly emphasized the development o f a culture relying on written literacy, including the recording o f the oral traditions and genealogies that had provided ethnic cohesiveness in the absence o f written records (see Arsenault). To mention Antonine Maillet's inestimable contribution to Acadian literature yet again, it is in her novels that women's role in transmitting orality receives literary acknowledgement, and it is in her books that speech is faithfully transliterated into script. While Father Landry's condescension to his wife does not sit well with the contemporary reader, there are other more alarming commentaries on the inequality between male and female power to consider i n these books. In her assessment o f the sort o f wife she expects Rose Bradwardine to make, Flora adds, "[i]f she becomes the property o f a churlish or negligent husband, she w i l l suit his taste also, for she w i l l not long survive his unkindness" (183). This, like the note on the dinner seatingarrangements in the Prince o f Inismore's household, is one o f the moments in these books where some o f the contemporary social realities o f matrimony become briefly apparentso briefly, in fact, that Elizabeth Butler Cullingford comes to the conclusion that the proponents o f the matrimonial analogy [for the union between England and Ireland] saw it as an ideal paradigm, designed to promote harmony  123  and end strife, [but] they were not accustomed to reflect that the conditions o f nineteenth-century matrimony did not favour the female p a r t n e r . . . . In legal terms, marriage transformed husband and wife into one person, and that person was the husband: we can therefore see that matrimony was a better (and more damning) analogy for political union than many o f its proponents realized. (28) The most brutal incident o f abuse occurs in Castle Rackrent, where K i t Rackrent's Jewish wife Jessica is locked up in her room for refusing to hand over her jewels. Clearly alert to the likelihood that her reader w i l l understand (and dismiss) this episode as a gothic abnormality in an otherwise truthful tale, and one furthermore filtered through the limited comprehension o f Thady Quirk, Edgeworth provides this footnote, which is worth quoting at some length because it supplies realistic details that quite knock the wind out o f the narrative's archness: [t]his part o f the history o f the Rackrent family can scarcely be thought credible; but injustice to honest Thady, it is hoped that the reader w i l l recollect the history o f the celebrated Lady Cathcart's conjugal imprisonment. The editor was acquainted with Colonel M ' G u i r e , Lady Cathcart's husband; he has lately seen and questioned the maid-servant who lived with Colonel M ' G u i r e during the time o f Lady Cathcart's imprisonment. Her ladyship was locked up in her own house for many y e a r s . . . . A t [her husband's] death her ladyship was released. The editor, within this year, saw the gentleman who accompanied her to England after her husband's death. When she first was told o f his death, she imagined  124  that the news was not true, and that it was told only with an intention o f deceiving her. A t his death she had scarcely clothes sufficient to cover her; she wore a red wig, looked scared, and her understanding seemed stupefied; she said that she scarcely knew one human creature from another: her imprisonment lasted about twenty years. (50) The "editor," namely M a r i a Edgeworth in male disguise, adds that such abuses are no longer possible under the current political system, that is, at the time o f the publication o f Castle Rackrent. However, reading the novels under discussion as an ensemble, with particular attention to their understanding o f marriage as reality and trope, the story o f Lady Rackrent's imprisonment becomes merely an excessive example in a string o f situations where it appears necessary to contain women lest, with their verbal and physical "incontinence," they endanger the project o f national identity.  6  In a final example, Madame d'Haberville, in Les Anciens Canadiens, "bonne et sainte fernrne, agee de trente-six ans, entrait dans cette seconde periode de beaute que les hommes preferent souvent a celle de la premiere jeunesse" (102), hardly ever says a word. O n the one occasion when she does speak at length, she tells the story o f a mother who grieves over her beautiful young daughter's death so passionately that the child cannot find peace in her grave and has to return to reproach her mother. With the help o f a monk, the latter promptly stops crying, and the daughter henceforth rests comfortably. The mother, "qui etait riche," devotes the remainder o f her life to charitable works, adopts several orphans, and has "Ci-git la mere des orphelins" written on her o w n tombstone (160-61). Madame d'Haberville's story goes on for too suspiciously long to be merely one o f the numerous folkloric tales that dot the narrative, and that in Aubert de  125  Gaspe's book are generally the domain o f picturesque servants and eccentric uncles (but never of the head of the household). It is likely that the author also meant the story to serve as an allegory exhorting French Canada to cease its mourning over the lost glories of N e w France and get on with it under the British government. The emphatically feminine nature of the plot casts French Canada in the role o f a woman who must learn to face reality. The melodramatic story requires a woman to tell it, but the resulting lessons must be implemented by the men. Thus, her son Jules finds himself "une jeune demoiselle anglaise d'une grande beaute" whom he teaches lessons other "celles de langue et de grammaire francaises" (275) and who, as I have illustrated in the previous chapter, makes her presence chiefly known in her new home by dispensing unwelcome cups of tea.  Courtships  In both The Golden  Dog  and A Diana  of Quebec,  Quebec City stands in for the whole o f  Quebec as a woman ready to be conquered, "a belle i n a gossamer ball-gown" (Mcllwraith 198), who looks down upon the He d'Orleans, "which the river encircled in its arms like a giant lover his fair mistress" (Kirby 4). K i r b y ' s book in particular provides a complex mesh o f courtships, all o f them abortive, in order to expose the betrayal o f New France at the hands o f France at every level o f governance. K i r b y places the stories of these relationships within a richly developed high Victorian aestheticism pretending to be an accurate rendition o f Louis X V ' s France in the colonies. "Courtship"  126 conventionally suggests a pair, but the only clearly constituted couple in The Golden Dog are Amelie de Repentigny and Pierre Philibert, whereas all the other main characters are involved in multiple courtships, in imitation o f the numerous cross-over allegiances that characterize the political situation o f N e w France. Amelie's brother, L e Gardeur, is in love with Angelique des Meloises. She, in turn, loves Francois Bigot, who owns "letters and billets from almost every lady in Quebec" (470), and hides his mistress, Caroline de St. Castin, in the dark depths o f Beaumanoir. A s a matter o f fact, not even A m e l i e ' s and Pierre's relationship is a pure twosome, as—like Blanche d'Haberville—she has fallen in love with h i m because her brother brought him to their house, and because Pierre seems like a better version o f the dissolute L e Gardeur. In one o f the watery accidents that are a stock feature o f nineteenth-century novels set in Quebec, Pierre has saved L e Gardeur from drowning, earning himself Amelie's gratitude and admiration as a consequence. Logically, it is also L e Gardeur who separates the lovers just before their wedding, when Amelie decides she has to immure herself in a convent in atonement for L e Gardeur's unpremeditated murder o f Pierre's father. The concluding pages o f The Golden Dog are unmitigated tragedy, with the exception o f a sly comment K i r b y inserts in the middle o f it: "[a] feeling o f pity and sympathy for these two affianced and unfortunate lovers stole? into the hearts o f the coldest nuns, while the novices and the romantic convent girls were absolutely w i l d over the melancholy fate o f Pierre and A m e l i e " (565). Here, the historical novel becomes temporarily replaced by a boarding-school story, and A m e l i e ' s self-sacrifice is turned into soap opera. The passage may be read as K i r b y ' s equivalent o f Walter Scott's note on Flora M c l v o r whose excessively poetic nature the author blames on her French education. A s The Golden Dog depicts it, French Canada has brought on  127  its own decline not only by the dissolution represented by the Intendant Francois Bigot and his cronies, but also with the exaggerated emotiveness with which even morally unimpeachable characters like Amelie and Pierre approach a sober subject like matrimony. Throughout the book, the population o f Quebec City is preoccupied with the question o f making the city "impregnable against the rumored attack o f the English" (9). "The people had come hi—many were accompanied by their wives and daughters—to assist in [building] the bulwark" (9), but while Governor de la Gallissonniere insists that "Quebec . . . must be made safe against all attack by land or water"  (131),  he receives the  K i n g ' s dispatch informing h i m that the defense o f N e w France is not a priority, and he finds his resolve further undermined by the treacherous self-interest o f Francois Bigot and his canaille.  A s a result, the city and all o f N e w France with it lay themselves open  like an unprotected woman who cannot hope for legitimate union with a responsible husband. "[I]f you want vengeance," Cadet advises Bigot when the Intendant suspects Angelique o f having murdered Caroline, "take a man's revenge upon a woman . . . ! It w i l l be better than killing her, much more pleasant, and quite as effectual"  (472).  Because he has to take care that the persistent announcements o f Quebec's impending violation are not misunderstood as applying to the impending British victory on the Plains o f Abraham, K i r b y props up his narrative with historical information and anecdotes in flash-forward mode that underline the harmonious union o f the French and the English following the Conquest. For example, K i r b y relates the story o f Louise de Brouague, who, " i n the full maturity o f her charms as the wife o f the Chevalier de Lery," accompanied her husband to the court o f George III to pay obeisance to her "new  128  sovereign" and was greeted with the compliment that beauties like her made the Conquest "a conquest" indeed (181). Elsewhere, K i r b y repeatedly details FrenchCanadians' refusal to j o i n forces with the Americans during the War o f Independence, and he ascribes their proud contrariness to the death o f Jumonville de Villiers, who died at Monongahela, unmarried, leaving "all the maids and matrons o f N e w France [to] lament [his] fate with tears" (215). The Golden Dog draws on the full repertoire o f romantic imagery, together with Victorian ideas about nature and artifice, to paint its stories o f love and betrayal (see Kroller, "George Eliot"). Angelique, the schemer and "pantheress" (355), is consistently compared to the voluptuous paintings o f the Renaissance, to portraits by Titian and Giorgione. Landscape paintings on her walls are likely to depict a scene where a herd o f horses "ha[s] broken fence, and [is] luxuriating in the rich forbidden pasture" (150). Amelie, by contrast, resembles a "fawn" (13) and "a sensitive plant" (158), and she is shown to best advantage sitting "on the twisted roots o f a gigantic oak foirning a rude but simple chair" (289) or on an outing with Pierre in "the little valley o f the Lairet, which wound and rippled over its brown glossy pebbles, murmuring a quiet song down in its hollow bed" (505). Likewise, the artificial gardens o f Bigot's Beaumanoir and the debauchery inside the manor, where all windows are habitually shut against the sunlight, are contrasted with the profusion o f flowers in the parklands surrounding the Philibert and T i l l y mansions, and with the wholesome atmosphere governing these households. The lush narrative draws on the widely disseminated views o f John Ruskin (in, for example, The Seven Lamps of Architecture  [1849] and The Stones of Venice [1851-3])  about the suspect sensuousness o f Renaissance art, implying that the glamour o f N e w  129  France o f Francois Bigot is equally corrupt, while the Philibert and Tilly establishments anticipate the British government as a healthy and "natural" regime. Throughout, the narrative singles out old trees, "some old oak or e l m . . . saved . . . from the axe of the woodman" (263) to underline the legitimacy o f a rule that honours the best in the traditions that it has inherited—which just happens to be the best in its own. While, in The Golden healthy existence, in Jacques  Dog,  it is the French who must be brought around to a  et Marie,  Bourassa proposes exactly the opposite. Like  Horatio, Gordon must abandon his epicurean tastes in general and his lascivious attitude towards women in particular before Marie is prepared to respect him. Shortly after his arrival i n the village, he observes a few young Acadiennes in white bonnets who, in his imagination, become infernally alluring. However, his environment soon enough has an excellent effect on his virtue. His courtship o f Marie is not narrated with as much pastoral leisure as that o f Jacques and Marie, but it is significant that a major stage in Gordon's education towards wholesomeness occurs over a small house owned by Marie that his soldiers have defiled and that he has restored to make amends: "[u]ne porche elegante s'elevait devant l'entree, surmontee d'un timpan pointu et d'une petite fleche gracieuse; trois legers balcons, avec des details gothiques, ornaient les fenetres; d'autres aiguilles s'elevaient sur le toit, dont une surmontee d'un coq tournant; les meubles etaient installes a l'interieur; la boutique n'avait plus de secrets" (92). The elaborateness of the design, together with the "gothic" details that Bourassa, as a student o f Flandrin and Overbeck, would have associated with spiritual aspiration and purity, make this house an appropriate one for Marie to inhabit, although Gordon probably wanted, above all, to ingratiate himself with Marie when he decided on its restoration. In its miniature  130  compactness, the house also provides a poignant counterpart not only to the wholesale destruction o f the village that w i l l shortly occur, but o f the house in which Marie and her father w i l l make a new beginning when they settle in Petite-Cadie.  Broken Promises  The Golden Dog depicts the violence o f imperial encounter as taking the forms o f private passions. Because the relationship o f Bigot and Caroline de St. Castin has been consummated, with disastrous consequences for her, and because Caroline is o f mixed race, this particular encounter deserves separate attention. The book is set in a six-month period, from summer to winter, 1748. The economic exploitation o f N e w France by the French Grand Company o f Traders, in the hands o f Louis X V s mistress, L a Pompadour, has just begun. This exploitation, as the novel makes clear, w i l l ruin N e w France financially and w i l l open the door to British expansionists. A t the beginning o f the novel, Quebec is preparing for invasion by the British. A l l levels o f French-Canadian society are organized on one side or the other o f a power struggle that pits the monopoly o f L a Friponne, the branch o f the French Grand Company o f Traders based in N e w France, against its major commercial rival, the Golden D o g trading company, owned by the Bourgeois Philibert. A t the same time as this commercial rivalry is growing, the Jansenists and the Jesuits are at odds, partly over a question that can be reduced to a conflict between national authority and Papal authority (595-96). This religious schism has been aggravated because "the idea [has] got abroad, not without some foundation,  131 V  that the society o f Jesus [has] secret commercial relations with the Friponne" (596). Thus, there exists an alliance between the Jansenists and sympathizers with the Bourgeois, and the Jesuits and the head o f L a Friponne, the Intendant Bigot. Religion and commerce are fundamentally intertwined. In historical terms, the novel attributes the fall o f N e w France to the actions o f Bigot, who "might have saved N e w France, had he been honest as he was clever" (55). In allegorical terms, however, it represents the fall o f N e w France as the fall from virtue o f Caroline de St. Castin, who has been seduced by Bigot's false promise o f marriage. Caroline is a "fallen woman," a figure with w h o m Victorian society was obsessed, as Lynda Nead has illustrated: [t]o begin with, the notion o f the 'fall' implied that she had been respectable but had dropped out o f respectable society. . . . A woman's 'fall' from virtue was frequently attributed to seduction and betrayal which set the scene for her representation as victim. Most importantly, the victimized fallen woman mobilized none o f the connotations o f power and independence; her deviancy did not involve money and thus, to a certain degree, she retained her femininity, that is, she remained powerless and dependent. (95-96) Caroline is the daughter o f an ancient and noble Acadian family, and her father commands great respect both in N e w France and at Versailles, even after the fall o f Acadia, but her seduction by Bigot makes her the victim o f the same sexual intrigues and greed that w i l l lead to the Conquest o f N e w France at Quebec.  132  Caroline's function as an allegory o f the fall o f N e w France is underlined by the narrator: "[t]he ways o f Providence are so mysterious in working out the problems o f national existence that the life or death o f a single individual may turn the scale o f destiny over half a continent" (230). Caroline's fall from grace and her death thus symbolize the powerlessness o f N e w France against the seductions o f Versailles, a corrupt court whose influence derives from its material wealth and from its network o f commercial ties and sexual intrigues. France, however, is not defined simply as a male seducer who brings about the fall o f N e w France. Rather, Versailles is corrupted by sexually deviant behaviour (the adulterous behaviour o f both sexes), by sexual rivalry between women (Angelique's jealousy o f Caroline and her desire to usurp L a Pompadour's position at Versailles), and by commercial rivalry between men (comprising the rivalry between Bigot and the Bourgeois Philibert). The Chateau o f Beaumanoir, Bigot's country residence, provides a powerful architectural metaphor for the moral and ideological differences between N e w France and Versailles. The Chateau was built by Jean Talon, the Intendant o f N e w France during the reign o f Louis X I V , for whom Beaumanoir "[w]as a quiet retreat when tired with the importunities o f friends or the persecution o f enemies, or disgusted with the cold indifference o f the court to his statesmanlike plans for the colonization o f N e w France" (49). With Talon as Intendant, Beaumanoir was the site o f negotiations and meetings that determined France's imperial success in North America. While a visitor at Beaumanoir, for example, the explorer L a Salle conferred with Talon before heading off to explore the Mississippi, to claim Louisiana for Louis X I V , and to explore the Great Lakes (49).  133  With Bigot as Intendant, uninhabited areas o f the Chateau have fallen into disrepair. The tower that stands a short distance from Beaumanoir, built under Talon as a place o f defence and refuge during wars with the Natives in the preceding century, now stands in ruins. Bigot is less interested in the military defence o f N e w France and more concerned with amassing profits from trade. He thus competes ruthlessly with the Bourgeois Philibert for trade in corn, wool, flax, timber and even ginseng (117). The fruit trees that Talon had planted are now laden with fruit which is, significantly, neglected by Bigot and left to ripen on branches that are bending under the weight o f their burden (50). Moreover, those areas o f the manor used regularly by Bigot are in a state o f disarray. Wine overflows onto tables, chairs remain overturned "where a guest had fallen in the debauch and been carried off by the valets" (54). Bigot and his friends drink wine "better than Bacchus ever drank" (59) and eat from dishes o f "Parmesan cheese, caviare and other provocatives to thirst" (54). With Bigot as its resident, Beaumanoir's main function is to aid L a Pompadour in acquiring allies in politics and commerce (which are virtually inseparable) by seducing guests with the kinds o f food and drink that could only be acquired by a powerful trading company with connections throughout the Empire. The narrative describes Bigot's trading company, L a Friponne (meaning "the swindle"), in terms similar to those which it refers to the oligarchy at Versailles: [t]he Friponne, as it was styled in popular parlance, was the immense magazine established by the Grand Company o f traders in N e w France. It claims a monopoly in the purchase and sale o f all imports and exports in the colony. Its privileges were based upon royal ordinance and decrees o f  134  the Intendant and its rights enforced in the most arbitrary manner-and to the prejudice o f every other mercantile interest in the colony. A s a natural consequence it was cordially hated, and richly deserved the maledictions which generally accompanied the mention of the Friponne-the swindle-a rough and ready epithet which sufficiently indicated the feeling o f the people whom it at once cheated and oppressed. (35) The oppressive monopoly o f L a Friponne and the arbitrary rule o f L a Pompadour demonstrate the degree to which the political and commercial practices o f Versailles have been corrupted by the breakdown of the royal family and the power o f L a Pompadour. K i r b y ' s condemnation o f Versailles has a strikingly Burkean tone to it. For the disintegration of the natural ties that bind the French royal family together, in The Dog  as in Burke's Reflections  on the Revolution  in France  Golden  (1790), result i n the loss o f  France's cultural values and national character. Thus, in The Golden  Dog,  the Governor  of N e w France declares that " i f N e w France be ever lost, its fall w i l l be due . . . [to] the decay o f loyalty, [and] the loss o f the sentiment o f national pride and greatness in the mother country" (425). The fall o f New France is precipitated by the breakdown o f patriarchal society, first at Versailles, and then at Quebec. The arrangement o f the Great H a l l at Beaumanoir is a visual metaphor of this breakdown. A t the head of the room hangs "a full length portrait o f the Marquise o f Pompadour, the mistress o f Louis X V . . .[whose] bold voluptuous beauty seemed well fitted to be the presiding genius o f the house" (53). While L a Pompadour is the symbolic head o f the colony, Bigot is her symbolic representative in N e w France. Bigot sits below her portrait, at the head of the table. H i s  135 "countenance" is "ugly and repulsive" but his "magnetic" eyes betray "the force o f a powerful w i l l and a depth and subtlety o f intellect that made men fear, i f they could not love h i m " (54). Round the table over which Bigot presides sit the "revellers-in the garb o f gentlemen, but all in disorder and soiled with wine—their countenances . . . inflamed, their eyes red and fiery, their tongues loose and loquacious" (54). Despite his gentlemanly appearance, Bigot, in his behaviour and his character, violates a gentleman's code o f conduct. That is, while his behaviour may seem chivalrous, he lacks "the soul o f honor" (69) which the narrative identifies as the true sign o f chivalry. Moreover, Bigot's voluntary subordination to an adulteress represents a violation o f ideal masculine behaviour, which is embodied by Bigot's rival, the Bourgeois Philibert, whose "force o f character, self-control. . . quiet compressed w i l l , and patient resolve" render h i m a natural leader o f men (211). Bigot is thus neither a true gentleman nor a natural leader o f men. It is no coincidence that Bigot, his paramour, Angelique des Meloises, and his patroness, L a Pompadour, are described in similar terms, as "vain, selfish, ambitious, and . . . possessed o f neither scruple nor delicacy in attaining [their] objects" (88). Far below the Great Hall, in the vault o f Beaumanoir, resides Caroline de St. Castin. Caroline understands that her fall represents a betrayal o f her family and society. She has fled Acadia so as to avoid inflicting further shame on her father. She also refuses to appear in public at Bigot's parties, and escapes to the solitude o f the vault to pray for his soul and for her absolution. The vault is spacious, and richly decorated with tapestries woven by the "looms o f the Gobelins" (67). The Gobelin tapestry manufactory in Paris was purchased by Louis X I V in the mid-seventeenth century and was famous for its pieces commemorating the K i n g ' s achievements. Caroline's surroundings link her to  136  Talon's rule in N e w France during the reign o f Louis X I V , and thus, to a more benevolent and virtuous colonial government. Significantly, these tapestries are tucked away, along with Caroline, in the Chateau's vaults. The tapestries testify to N e w France's former greatness, while Caroline, the sole inhabitant o f the vaults, symbolizes N e w France's former social respectability. Caroline presents a sharp contrast to the spaciousness o f the vault, for she lies prostrate, her hands clasped above her head, hidden in a shaded alcove in a secret chamber in the vault. Her appearance corresponds to the images o f fallen women in Victorian literature, for her hair is dishevelled and her complexion is pallid and drawn. Her former virtue is symbolized by the white robe that she wears at all times. Caroline's fall represents an irrevocable violation o f her fernininity. Femininity, in the novel, centres on women's married or unmarried status. T w o characters, L a Corriveau and Amelie de Repentigny, give voice to very different notions o f femininity. Amelie de Repentigny, for whom a "good noble man is after G o d the worthiest object o f a woman's devotion" (25), represents the narrative's ideal o f femininity, which proves to be synonymous with domestic and sexual virtue. L a Corriveau, on the other hand, detests women who willingly "enslave" themselves to "some man through life, while aspiring to command all men" (495). In a society where women's beauty and sexual desirability make them politically powerful, Angelique and L a Pompadour conflate sexual and monetary power with political power. Caroline thus becomes a kind o f commodity over which Angelique and L a Pompadour battle to w i n the undivided attention and devotion o f Bigot.  137  Caroline is at the centre o f all intrigues, political and sexual: she inadvertently stands in the way o f Angelique's ambitions to marry Bigot and to become the rival o f L a Pompadour at Versailles; she also stands in the way o f L a Pompadour herself, who has other matrimonial designs for Bigot. Nevertheless, Caroline's identity has been erased. Her occupation o f Beaumanoir is, for the most part, unknown, and those who have heard rumours o f Bigot's kept woman speculate about her identity, which remains a mystery to them. Although her powerful father has solicited the support o f L a Pompadour in looking for his daughter and has made Bigot nervous enough to seek out another hidingplace for her, Caroline's fate in the end corresponds to the conventional fate o f the fallen woman, to die in obscurity. Caroline is o f combined Acadian and Native heritage. The narrative refers to the latter as the "red stain" o f her Abenaquis "blood" (68). Caroline thus personifies two cultures threatened with oblivion, at the same time as the "red stain" foreshadows her death, when she w i l l be poisoned and stabbed with a stiletto blade, and her blood w i l l stain her white robe. This imagery is significant, for while the narrative consistently downplays Caroline's Native heritage and underlines, instead, her ties to a noble Acadian family, her Native character is effectively responsible for her death. It makes her gullible enough to open her door to la Mere Malheur, who appears to Caroline i n the guise o f a fortune-teller and interpreter o f dreams, but who comes to arrange the fatal meeting between Caroline and L a Corriveau. A s the narrative indicates, although Caroline "was not superstitious," her Abenaquis heritage "inclined her to yield more than ordinary respect to dreams" (464). Thus, Caroline lets la Mere Malheur into her room (the only  138  visitor to whom she has granted entry) in the belief that the meaning o f her recent dream, o f a bright angel carrying her up to heaven, w i l l be deciphered for her (464). Carl Murphy has rightly identified marriage, "or rather its absence, [as] a key metaphor in K i r b y ' s novel. It is the inability o f characters to marry and the subsequent collapse o f their personal relationships which become the metaphors for the collapse o f N e w France" (14). While this may be so, the inability o f the characters to marry is inextricably linked to the failure o f domestic and sexual virtue, as well as the corruption o f traditional notions o f femininity by the emasculated court o f Versailles, embodied by Bigot and, by extension, the monarch, Louis X V , who allows his court to be run by his mistress. French-Canadian values, defined as domestic and sexual virtue, duty to G o d , and loyalty to France, require the kind o f domestic stability that the novel portrays as lacking i n the royal family at Versailles.  Menages a Trois  Throughout much o f Wacousta, the conduct o f the British fails to live up to the ideal o f their national character, defined by benevolence, rational thought, and equanimity, because the dual pressures o f interpersonal and intercultural conflict are too strong to allow them to do so. The novel employs many standard Gothic tropes to portray the breakdown o f social harmony: the doubling o f Wacousta's identity with that o f his nephew; the haunting resemblance o f Clara de Haldimar to her mother; Ellen Hallo way's curse on the de Haldimar family; the alien oppressive power o f Wacousta; and Colonel de  139  Haldimar's radical militancy. The characteristic haunted house is here replaced by an impenetrable wilderness, haunted by simian-like Natives, whose "dark and flitting forms" are seen "gliding from tree to tree along the skirt o f the w o o d " (147). These Gothic tropes are the expression o f the anguish and chaos caused when, thirty years before, a young Colonel Haldimar stole Reginald Morton's fiancee, Clara Beverly, and married her. Wacousta correlates the breakdown o f British society with the breakdown o f friendships between men, and o f romantic relationships between women and men. After stealing Clara from Morton, de Haldimar persuades his superiors to have M o r t o n courtmartialed and discharged from the military. Morton then follows de Haldimar, to Culloden, to the Battle on the Plains, and to Detroit. He fights on the side o f the Jacobites, the French Canadians and the Iroquois respectively, in the hope o f taking his revenge on both de Haldimar and the British military, which he perceives as having unjustly charged him. A l l failed relationships in the novel can thus be traced back to de Haldimar's marriage to Clara and Morton's v o w to avenge de Haldimar's betrayal o f their friendship. For example, the union between de Haldimar and Clara produces three children, Frederick, Charles, and Clara. Morton (known in Canada as Wacousta) succeeds in murdering two o f the three children and is himself murdered before he has taken the life o f the third. Charles de Haldimar's friendship with Sir Everard Valletort ends tragically when Charles is murdered by Wacousta. Shortly thereafter, Clara de Haldimar's secret marriage to Sir Everard ends in violence when Wacousta murders them both.  140  Among all the triangulated relationships in this book, two stand out, the one between Sir Everard and Charles, and the one between Frederick and Oucanasta. Anticipating Eve Sedgwick's work by seven years, John Moss discusses "trisexuality" in his book Sex and Violence  in the Canadian  Novel  (1977) as "usually i n v o l v i n g ] two 7  men and a woman, and [as] usually exploiting] traditional gender stereotypes" (85), in which "a passive male, self-conscious and unsure o f his own identity" is pitted against another male who is "aggressive, assertively masculine." Between them is a "selfeffacing, sensitive and loving female" (85). The Everard/Clara/Charles triangle, however, dispenses with such gender stereotypes by making all three participants passive and feminine, with particular attention reserved for Charles's girlish beauty, which is described with Richardson's "usual slurping relish," to borrow Jay Macpherson's inimitable phrase: [n]ever had Charles de Haldimar appeared so eminently handsome; and yet his beauty resembled that o f a frail and delicate woman, rather than that o f one called to the manly and arduous profession o f a soldier . . . The light brown hair flowing in thick and natural waves over a high white forehead; the rich bloom of the transparent and downy cheek; the large, blue, long, dark-lashed eye, i n which a shade o f languour harmonised withe the soft but animated expression o f the whole countenance,—the dimpled mouth,—the small, clear, and even teeth,—all these now characterised Charles de Haldimar; and i f to these we add a voice rich, full, and melodious, and a smile sweet and fascinating, we shall be at no loss to  141  account for the readiness with which Sir Everard suffered his imagination to draw on the brother for whose attributes he ascribed to the sister. (107) W e have come across a triangular relationship constituted by a woman between two men earlier in our discussion o f The Wild Irish Girl, where it is important that Glorvina, while representing the lyricism and creativity o f the Irish "soul," be tutored by men in the fulfilment o f her destiny and where there is a latent incestuousness to prop up the arrangement. Another variation o f the triangle occurs in Les Anciens  Canadiens  where the women—Blanche d'Haberville and Jules's English wife—are distinctly secondary to the friendship between Archibald de Locheill and Jules d'Haberville. Throughout, their relationship is characterized in terms o f Greek mythology, "Pythias et Damon, Pylade et Oreste, Nysus et Euryale" (33), but tellingly it is the Bible that is called upon to legitimize their love as "plus aimable, suivant l'expression emphatique de l'Ecriture, que l'amour d'aucune femme" (69). In Wacousta, the oblique eroticism that propels the triangular relationships in Owenson and Aubert de Gaspe erupts into fullblown melodrama and cannot be adequately contained by even the most resolute reading o f Wacousta as colonial or national allegory, although efforts have certainly been made in that direction (see, for example, Ballstadt, 1-9). A s in the readings o f Castle  Rackrent  and Waverley, and what they have to say about the outrageous situations i n which women can find themselves when they enter matrimony, here too the trope begins to unravel and expose its psychological and realist underside. Moss also refers to the triangle that exists between Frederick, Madeline and Oucanasta, an Iroquois woman, and concludes that this "is just a triangle" (89). However, Frederick, as the only surviving de Haldimar child, represents the potential for  142 redemption o f Britain's divided character. A s the next generation o f the de Haldimars in Canada, he symbolizes the relegation to the past o f his father's crime against Morton. B y replacing his father's tyrannical rule over the garrison with a more benevolent form o f government, he represents the realization o f Britain's ideal character. Revealingly, in order to fulfill his potential, Frederick must first terminate his sexually charged liaison with Oucanasta and marry his cousin, Madeline. Likewise, before he becomes a rational and benevolent leader, he must undergo a series o f changes. Specifically, he must address his own masculinity, threatened when he is captured by Wacousta and held prisoner by the Iroquois, and also challenged by his behaviour towards Oucanasta. In order to help Frederick to escape his Iroquois captors, Oucanasta cuts the ropes that bind him. This act literally frees Frederick and symbolically subordinates h i m to her, for the conventional roles o f female captive and male liberator are here reversed. After she frees him Oucanasta insists that Frederick wear her moccassins and that she accompany h i m barefoot. Frederick at first objects: "[tlhis was too un-European,—too much reversing the established order o f things, to be borne patiently. A s i f he had felt the dignity o f his manhood offended by the proposal, the officer drew his foot back, declaring, as he sprang from the log, he did not care for the thorns, and could not think o f depriving a female, who must be much more sensible o f pain than h i m s e l f  (240). He  changes his mind, however, when Oucanasta shows h i m her foot and urges h i m to feel it: O u c a n a s t a . . . calmly reseated herself on the log, drew her right foot over her left knee, caught one o f the hands o f her companion, and placing it upon the naked sole, desired h i m to feel how impervious to attack o f every description was the indurated portion o f the lower limb . . . Most men love  143  to render tribute to a delicate and pretty foot. Some, indeed, go so far as to connect every thing feminine with these qualities, and to believe that nothing can be feminine without t h e m [ . ] . . . [W]hen [Frederick de Haldimar] had passed his unwilling hand over the f o o t . . . that set all symmetry at defiance, a wonderful revolution came over his feelings . . . [and he] no longer offered any opposition. (240-41) It would be easy to write a whole volume analysing the obsession, in these novels, in keeping with the "geography" o f erogenous zones on the nineteenth-century female body, with women's feet; suffice it to say that in this scene, de Haldimar appears to be 8  experiencing "a wonderful revolution" because he has allowed Oucanasta to switch gender roles with him and her foot has become a substitute male organ. However, like their passionate kiss later on, when "the young officer [catches] the drooping form o f the generous Indian wildly to his heart" and the two fall "with a heavy and reverberating crash among the leaves and dried sticks that [are] strewed thickly around" (260), thus richly alerting everyone to their presence, the foot-fondling and Frederick's resulting feminization are too transgressive to be permitted a repetition. Oucanasta renounces her love for him and becomes a kind o f maiden aunt to Frederick and Madeline's children, "bearing curious presents, the fruits o f Indian ingenuity" (543), while her warrior-brother acts as a sort o f personal trainer to them, teaching them "the athletic and active exercises peculiar to his race" (543).  144  Matrimony  Most o f the novels under discussion are preoccupied with the preliminaries o f matrimony, its numerous complications, or its failure, while marriage as a functioning institution is relegated to the sidelines, and few o f these are depicted as a partnership. Although idealized as a relationship between saints, marriage between the Landrys, as illustrated in the letter-reading scene, is one in which authority clearly rests with the man o f the household. Indeed, it is easy to forget Madame Landry and her seventeen other children, as the bond between Marie and her father is so strong that, even before the family is deported, they seem to be on their o w n much o f the time. Madame Landry's self-effacement seems to be the rule. When Jacques's mother feels death approaching during the deportation, she assembles her family around her and "demanda a son mari et a ses enfants de lui pardonner le mal, les chagrins et les scandales qu'elle avait p u leur causer dans la v i e " (171), before she turns her eyes heavenward and expires. Juxtaposed with Bourassa's hagiography o f "nos saintes meres" (46) and the marriages they entered at the age o f fourteen is the persistent depiction in The Golden Dog o f marriage as a business transaction between shrewd and elusive partners, and o f wives as a form o f currency more valuable than the paper-money that Kirby includes in his list o f factors that contributed to the downfall o f N e w France. Marie E x i l i , who prepares the poison that kills Caroline de St. Castin, arrived i n Quebec as a fille du Roy, "one o f a cargo o f unmarried women sent out to the colony, o n matrimonial venture, as the custom then was, to furnish wives for the colonists" (334). Marriage is the subject o f tough and prolonged negotiations, and Angelique engages i n several o f these in an effort  145  to ensnare Bigot. Dame Tremblay, attendant to Caroline de St. Castin, torments her mistress with an endless tale about her marital adventures when she was the "charming Josephine" (138), marrying first for love, then for money, and finally settling comfortably as the housekeeper at Beaumanoir. While the sentimental Caroline wants to hear that Bigot loves no woman but her, Dame Tremblay offers the kind o f re-assurance that she understands best, by reciting the mantra o f "money": "[m]en love beauty and marry money. Love is more plentiful than matrimony, both at Paris and at Quebec, at Versailles as well as at Beaumanoir" (142) and "The Intendant loves you . . . H e may, indeed, marry a great marchioness, with her lap full o f gold and chateaux[.]... I f a girl cannot marry for love, she w i l l marry for money; and i f not for money, she can always marry for spite" (145). Money, o f course, also plays a large role in Zoe Bedard's marriage contract, and it finally is o f crucial significance when Amelie and Hortense enter the convent, and a lively discussion over their dowries ensues before they can enter, and more negotiations follow between the convent and Lady de T i l l y when the girls take the veil: Mere M i g e o n was especially overjoyed at this prospect o f relieving the means o f her house, which had been so terribly straitened o f late years. The losses occasioned by the war had been a never-ending source o f anxiety to her and Mere Esther, who, however, kept their troubles as far as possible to themselves, in order that the cares o f the world might not encroach too far upon the minds o f the Community. Hence they were more than ordinarily glad at this double vocation in the House o f Repentigny. The prospect o f its great wealth falling to pious uses, they  146  regarded as a special mark o f Divine Providence and care for the house o f Ste. Ursule. (562) Soldiers' wives sometimes enter K i r b y ' s narrative in brief anecdotes about their ruses to bring their husbands home sooner (the wives spread false rumours about Iroquois movements) or about their own capture (Pierre Philibert reports how his regiment "captured a convoy o f soldiers' wives from N e w England, [then] escorted them with drums beating to Grand Pre and sent a cask o f Gascon wine for them to celebrate their union with their husbands" [95]. But they are clearly in a different league from the aristocrats and bourgeoises whose economic ethos dominates the narrative.  A Diana  of Quebec,  however, features a high-ranking military couple, the  Riedesels, who are not only the only uxorious pair in these books, but who are also the doting parents o f four young daughters. The distinctly domestic ambiance o f Mcllwraith's book makes for a refreshing contrast to the stereotypical plot o f colonial administration and espionage that ,4 Diana  of Quebec  shares with K i r b y ' s and  Richardson's novels, as does the courtship between the gruff Captain Mathews and M i s s Simpson, who both adore the young Riedesels, and begin to warm to each other through their affection for the children: "[a]ttractive little mortals they were, babbling away h r their broken English, repeating the one I had heard, as well as other counting-out rhymes M i s s Simpson had evidently taught them, for she corrected errors as we went along. After a while she addressed me from the other side o f the horse" (96). It is interesting to speculate what kind of readership M c l l w r a i t h may have had in mind for this book. The emphasis on the children, who are described through the cantankerous voice o f the Captain and are therefore spared the saccharine characteristics that often mar fictional  147  children o f the period, suggest that she may have addressed herself primarily to women and to young readers. It would also be illuminating to study the book in the context o f historical novels o f the same period, that is, the years before the outbreak o f W o r l d War II, to see i f the kind o f intimate domesticity that characterizes Mcllwraith's work despite its accomplished handling o f historical material was typical o f the genre at the time. Compared with the other books, it is much more difficult to ascertain in A Diana of Quebec what its national allegory amounts to. L i k e The Golden Dog, Mcllwraith's novel does confirm that the union between the English and the French has been a success, and that "the French Canadians, who were hostile neutrals, could they be called such at all, twenty-five or thirty years ago, now tak[e] up arms for the maintenance o f the British connection, as the best thing for themselves. A t Chateauguay last year three hundred o f their volunteers defeated ten times that number o f Americans!" (314), but her narrative is so dominated by administrators coming and going that it is difficult to derive the kind o f jingoism from it that The Golden Dog, its decadent aestheticism notwithstanding, proclaims page after page.  T h e B i g House  In virtually a l l o f these novels, a manor serves as a focal point for the development o f a plot that centres on the flourishing, destruction, and sometimes restoration o f a society. The most famous o f these is probably Tully-Veolan i n Waverley, the manor o f the Bradwardines. Edward Waverley approaches it in a carefully orchestrated scene, in  148  which he is first confronted with a filthy village "where children, almost in a primitive state o f nakedness, lay sprawling, as i f to be crushed by the hoofs o f the first passing horses" (74), and then rides up to the house along an avenue which lush vegetation has made into a tunnel o f pastoral beauty channelling him, as it were, into a fairy-tale world o f gentle eccentricity and domestic sweetness. The description lingers lovingly over the play o f sunlight on the grass, and it is equally attentive to the elaborate arrangements o f terraces, gardens, and water fountains adorning the building. Everything and everybody in this house and around it has a comfortably assigned place, including Rose, whose room features a balcony providing a splendid panorama o f the gardens below and just enough o f a view into the distance. After Culloden, Waverley rides towards Tully-Veolan again, and "[a] single glance announced that great changes had taken place" (433). The gates that previously sheltered the paradise inside have been broken, the building burnt, the fountains ruined, and "two immense horse-chestnut trees . . . shivered to pieces by the explosion o f gunpowder in the trunk" (434). Baron Bradwardine is found to have been hiding in a cave, with "his o l d friend Titus L i v i u s " (444) as his only companion. The house, however, is restored as well as can be managed, and the marriage contract between Rose and Edward stipulates "a wee bit minute o f an antenuptial contract, intuitu matrimonii, so it cannot be subject to reduction hereafter, as a donatio inter virum et uxorem" (487). The patient tracking o f Tully-Veolan's fate provides the architectural equivalent to the mnemonics generated by the journeys outlined in the previous chapter, and indeed the narrative articulates several links between the solidity o f the house and the mobility o f the journey, by suggesting that the privilege o f one is dependent on the other. Thus,  149  Edward Waverley has earned the right to inhabit the Bradwardines' restored house as the Baron's son-in-law because he has travelled through the trials generated by his selfdeceptions first. Aubert de Gaspe's d'Haberville manor, although adapted to the topography o f Quebec, is clearly modelled on the description o f Tully-Veolan, as are its destruction and restoration. Although Archibald de Locheill has come to the place several times during his years as a student at the seminary in Quebec, it is the visit just before his and Jules's departure to Europe that is given the most elaborate attention because it becomes the watershed between one historical time and another. The narrative spends a full four chapters getting the young men to the d'Haberville mansion, with story-telling and various adventures along the way that bring Arche into intimate contact with the people and customs along the shores o f the St. Lawrence. O n his departure to Britain, he w i l l therefore carry with h i m a compact memory o f the culture he is leaving behind and that he w i l l return to destroy as a member o f the British army. Located on a promontory overlooking the river, with a view o f the ships that sail into Canada and out o f it, the mansion is like an outpost and a beacon, as well as being an elegant and sophisticated dwelling, with "remises, granges et etables, cinq petits pavilions . . . un jardin potager, au sud-ouest du manoir, deux vergers, l ' u n au nord et l'autre au nord-est" (99) to complete it. Aubert de Gaspe takes care to inventory the trees—"ormes, erables, bouleaux, hetres, epinettes rouges, frenes, merisiers, cedres, mascouabinas, et autres plantes aborigenes" (98)—because he knows from hindsight that they are about to perish. This narrative has the added complication that Archibald himself w i l l give the order to burn this and other buildings on the army's way to Quebec, and the humiliating  150  consequences o f his action are brought painfully home to him when he delivers Jules's letter to the d'Habervilles and finds them living in a modest house, their "argenterie . . . reduite au plus stricte necessaire." The meal that they enjoy, complete with the dessert, "tout compose de fruits de la saison," is served on maple leaves instead o f crystal dishes (234). Because o f his complicity in the Conquest o f N e w France, de Locheill is not granted the privilege experienced by Edward Waverley o f marrying the daughter o f the house and occupying the mansion with her. Blanche refuses him, and vows to remain celibate. Arche, who matches her resolve and never marries, lives nearby and comes to visit frequently, although Blanche gradually becomes "une soeur d'adoption" (280). Blanche offers her sacrifice to the memory o f N e w France at the same time that she admits together with the entire d'Haberville family that the English and the French must co-exist peacefully. A house set aside from the manor is also featured in The Wild Irish Girl, where Horatio discovers the Lodge that his father occupies during his visits to Ireland. H e initially suspects L o r d M — o f keeping the Lodge as a love-nest—a suspicion not completely off-the-mark given the L o r d M — ' s infatuation with Glorvina—but then realizes that, although there is little furniture in the place, it is filled with books on Irish lore. Together with the "initiation rites" discussed earlier that Horatio has to undergo, the Lodge is a first indication that he is moving away from the metropolitan culture that so far has kept him enthralled, and towards the proudly ruinous world o f the Inismores. In these buildings the superior social status o f their inhabitants is clearly displayed; this, however, is not true for Castle Rackrent in Edgeworth's novel. It is a modest house 9  without much domestic comfort, and as Jessica Rackrent instantly observes, its "grounds"  151  consist o f bog and skimpy shrubbery. There is no wide drive leading up to the building, doors are low, and the kitchen is too close to the hving quarters. Because the Rackrents do not have the necessary repairs done, windows are broken and roofs leaky. In a famous scene, Thady is seen "fastening up [his] slate against the broken pane; and [he] wipe[s] down the window-seat with [his] w i g " (78). A n d yet Condy Rackrent and his wife live in grand style, and do their best to transform the house into the elegant mansion it never was: "[m]y lady had a fine taste for building, and furniture, and playhouses, and she turned every thing topsy-turvy, and made the barracks-room into a theatre, as she called it" (63). The spendthrift couple's marriage is as sham as their social aspirations and fails soon enough. Alone, Condy loses the house to his steward's ambitious son and stages a mock wake for himself in the Lodge. While the Lodge as an outlying building serves as a stepping-stone in Horatio's education, it becomes the end o f the Rackrent line in Edgeworth's novel. The fact that the Rackrent women "do not reproduce biologically may be taken as emblematic o f the disorder Edgeworth locates i n familial and social relations: themselves treated as the site and medium for property exchange between men, the ladies Rackrent fetishize what they accumulate, seeing self-interest as the limit o f their interest" (Corbett 48). Such intersections between gender and exchange o f property, as outlined by M a r y Jean Corbett in her discussion o f Castle Rackrent, continue to manifest themselves in literatures o f cultural encounter in Canada, as in K i r b y ' s novel, where Angelique des Meloises resigns herself to life as a sexual "go-between" between her lover, Bigot, and de Pean, the man whom she w i l l marry. Repeatedly, women i n these novels retain their femininity by remaining powerless and dependent (like the virtuous Amelie de  152  Repentigny and Caroline de St. Castin) or risk transgressing the conventional boundaries o f feminine behaviour by acting out their sexual desires and political ambitions (often, one through the other). The novels studied here reveal a remarkable number o f failed romances that have disastrous results. The paradox inherent in the marriage metaphor, the "damning analogy" to which Cullingford refers, is neatly captured i n the complex closure to Les Anciens Canadiens, where the forced optimism that inheres in Jules's marriage to the unnamed Englishwoman (who, like Jules's mother, speaks only once in the novel) is countered by the resistance to intercultural union in Blanche's refusal o f de Locheill's offer o f marriage. [n.p.]Excluded from direct action, women, like Blanche, are subsumed symbolically into the colonized culture as its boundary and metaphoric limit, thus revealing the limits o f the marriage metaphor in restoring moral and social order. It is also important to note, however, that not all men enjoy the privilege o f political contiguity with one another, as their relations are differently inflected by class, culture, and history. For example, while de Locheill's class and historical backgrounds render him initially acceptable to the French Canadians, his cultural background w i l l later make him untrustworthy to them. However, it is his class, and the wealth that is restored to h i m after his repatriation, that enable him to "buy" his way back into French Canada, to settle on lands that neighbour the d'Haberville estate. Horatio similarly earns the right to remain in Ireland, not only through marriage, but through his inheritance o f the Inismore estate upon the Prince's death. In an early passage i n the novel, Horatio encounters a crying child, trapped inside its "hut," with the wooden door taken off its hinges and placed horizontally in front o f the opening. Horatio, describing the child's cries as  153  "perfectly in unison with the vocal exertions o f the companion o f his imprisonment, a large sow," approaches and, without asking questions, "remove[s] the barrier: the boy and the animal escaped together, and I found myself alone in the centre o f this miserable asylum o f human wretchedness—the residence o f an Irish peasant" (57). Horatio's symbolic tearing down o f the hut contrasts with his later participation, through marriage, in the symbolic restoration o f the Inismores' estate. Yet, as Corbett, Ferris, and others have pointed out, this restoration restores Horatio's position o f superiority over the Irish as a necessary preliminary to achieving intercultural union: "[t]o dispossess landowners o f their property, even i f that property originally came into their hands by violent and oppressive measures, would open up the possibility that the ongoing legacy o f conquest might be the continuation o f hereditary antagonisms, rather than the establishment o f the intercultural means for repairing them" (Corbett 61). This dilemma can be said to apply to all o f the novels under discussion, yet, ironically, Glorvina, as the female body through which such exchange o f property and hereditary rights takes place, may actually fare better than most other women discussed here. This is especially true when her fate is compared to that o f characters such as Oucanasta, whose role in the restoration o f social order is to play nursemaid to de Haldimar's children; to Blanche d'Haberville, who performs an analogous role in raising her brother's children; and, worse still, to Caroline de St. Castin, who, through a premeditated act o f violence, has no place whatsoever i n Canada's future.  154  See also Swift, "The Story o f an Injured L a d y " in Scott, ed., 97-99. The ancient Greek name for Ireland, meaning "land in the west;" the name "Ierne" is related to " E r i n , " which remains in use. See Adrian Room. See Swift, " A True Story," 37. See Houston, esp. "Oral Culture and Literature Culture," 193-210, where he speaks about the "separate cultural compartments" into which orality and literacy must be categorized. For their discussions o f such systemic gender hierarchies, see Sedgwick and Rubin. For her work on gender aspects o f language, see Sorensen, esp. 205-7; 77-84; et passim, on women's language as an expression o f incontinence, see Patricia Parker. See, more recently, Dickinson, Here is Queer (1999). See, for example, Angelique's feet in The Golden Dog: "[h]er dainty feet, shapely, aspiring and full o f character as her face, were carelessly thrust forward and upon one o f them lay a flossy spaniel, a privileged pet o f his fair mistress" (150), or Marie's "petit pied blanc" (49), which attracts Jacques's fancy during their courtship. For a discussion o f the B i g House i n the Anglo-Irish novel, see Kreilkamp. 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  155  Epilogue History for the "Television A g e " : T h e C B C as National Historian  The Series and Its Reception  In January, 1999, M a r k Starowicz, executive producer of the joint C B C - S R C epic miniseries Canada:  A People's  History,  gave a keynote address at the plenary session o f  the conference " G i v i n g the Past a Future," held in Montreal. He titled his address " A Nation Without Memory," and argued that Canadians are so cut off from each other and from their country's past that they seem to have suffered a cataclysmic "stroke," rendering them incapable o f constructing a national historical identity. "There is a crisis in the transmission o f our society's memory," he begins. "In fact, there is no real memory. Canadian society has had a stroke that has virtually eliminated long-term memory, our emotions buffeted by a sound bite, bewildered by a film c l i p " (see Starowicz, " A Nation Without Memory"). According to Starowicz, because Canadians' 1  minds have come to work in a way that mirrors the media through which they communicate, any historical project has an ethical imperative to employ these very media, for television has become "the marketplace o f fiction, discourse and entertainment.... [A]nyone who holds precious any idea, cause or sensibility has the moral obligation to bring those ideas to where the people are." Not surprisingly, i n the first episode o f the series, the narrator defines Canada:  A People's  History  as "the first  history for the television age" (see "When the World Began"). The program thus  156  becomes a mnemonic in itself, styled to provide viewers with a narrative o f Canadian history sustained by common themes (in this case, migration, war, and romance—much as in the historical fiction studied here), but divided into forty one-hour episodes, each with its o w n internal subdivisions, lasting approximately ten to fifteen minutes each. This chapter w i l l address the following questions: what are the narrative conventions that the series employs, and how (if at all) does the medium o f television succeed where the classroom teaching o f history has apparently failed? This chapter w i l l focus on the first and fourth episodes, entitled "When the World Began," and "Battle for a Continent," which deal respectively with aboriginal history, the Deportation o f the Acadians and the Battle o f the Plains o f Abraham. It w i l l pay particular attention to the reception o f these episodes in English and French Canada. Canada:  A People's  History  represents the C B C ' s attempt to write a pluralistic  and gender-inclusive narrative o f Canadian history that succeeds where history textbooks have failed. Starowicz's conception o f the relationship between historiography and nationhood calls to mind Eric Hobsbawm's assertion that "historians are to nationalism what poppy-growers . . . are to heroin addicts: we supply the essential raw material for the market. Nations without a past are contradictions in terms" ("Ethnicity" 255). I f nationhood is impossible without a national historian, then Starowicz posits himself, as producer o f the C B C series, in such a position. He evokes his own background, as the child o f Polish immigrants, both to establish his credentials as producer o f the series and to legitimate its revisionary narrative: I came to this country, to Montreal, when I was eight years old, speaking neither French nor English. M y genetic provenance has no link with the  157  early stories o f Canada, except through the transcendent humanity o f people seeking refuge and hope for their children. That is the single, uniting theme o f Canadian history[.] . . . I descend from neither the filles du roi, nor the Loyalists, nor the aboriginal nations. Yet their stories are also my own; since I am Canadian, they are my ancestors.... [The stories of] the Haitian, the Sudanese, the Vietnamese, and Chinese Canadians . . . these now belong to Canada, to the native people, to the French and to the English. (Foreword xi) Starowicz's desire to present a pluralistic narrative o f Canadian history is reflected in the various narratives modes that the series uses in order to accommodate a variety o f voices, mainly taken from life-writing, such as journals, diaries, and letters. What interests me most here, however, is the voices that are left out. The producers' choice to foreground life-writing alongside a traditional narrative o f historical dates and battles establishes a narrative formula which proves unable to accommodate the voices o f those whose letters may not have been as judiciously preserved, such as, at least in these episodes, the letters written by women. A n d the Natives are cited through the words o f white witnesses and historians, rather than their own, which are not extensively documented in written records. In the first segment, the visual imagery portrays the Natives as existing outside o f chronological time: the Natives are frequently surrounded by mist, the lighting is much darker in this episode than in the rest, and the absence o f references to chronological time, combined with the focus on legendary time, give the impression that the Natives comprise a part o f Canada's prehistory.  158  The television series features heroic music, sea battles, elaborate ball-room scenes, and grand panoramas (some o f which were produced digitally because the producers lacked the budget to do otherwise). Most remarkable about these episodes is the amount o f movement in each scene. Rarely does the camera allow for full-body shots. Instead, it focuses on head-and-shoulder shots and facial expressions to convey a sense o f emotional immediacy and virtual proximity to events. Just as Owenson's strategy, in The Wild Irish Girl, is to challenge Horatio's metropolitan perspective through a discourse o f proximity, the repeated cinematographic emphasis on such closeup shots (often in tandem with a rousing musical score) is meant to elicit the kind o f affective response that challenge what Starowicz has described as Canadians' endemic indifference to their past. If the visual elements o f the series can be conceived in terms o f metaphor, then the extended metaphors in the series are those o f the face and the hands. Repeatedly, the camera focuses on hands that are busy with a variety o f activities, such as loading guns, setting fire to canons, and writing letters. In an interesting conflation o f military aggression with the printed word, the opening scene o f Episode Four features a hand loading what looks, at first, like bullets, but what is revealed instead to be individual typeface inserted into a printing press. The printing press, it turns out, belongs to Benjamin Franklin, whose newspaper, as the narrator explains, played an important role in rousing anti-French sentiment in what were to become the American colonies. Indeed, Franklin seems to be the symbolic centre o f the episode. A s the narrator reminds us, his desire to ensure that the N e w England colonies would remain "Anglo-Saxon and Protestant" means that Canada stands "at the centre o f everything that threatens the  159  Americans." Thus the Deportation o f the Acadians (covered in about ten minutes) is, surprisingly, reduced to a conflict between Canadians and Americans. The scenes in Jacques et Marie that recall the Deportation and the burning o f Grand-Pre are depicted briefly as having been instigated by the Governor o f Massachusetts, a Franklin sympathizer, who sent "American colonists" to burn the Acadian villages. Yet, viewers' responses to the "abridgement" o f Acadian history have been minimal. What response 2  there is, however, seems divided as to the historical justice o f the scenes included. One viewer concludes his entry into the online discussion forum at the C B C website by stating, "[b]y the way, I am an Acadian and am tired o f the popular view that my people are nothing but victims." He does believe that "the series did an acceptable job in describing the plight o f the Acadians" (see Pettipas). Another viewer, by contrast, found the episode "to be very disappointing [for the] Acadian story is in fact a topic unto itself . . . .and to have it glossed over so lightly was an injustice to these people" (See McLeod). Given its emphasis on tracing the fall o f N e w France to the Governor o f Massachusetts and Benjamin Franklin, the series transforms the North American events o f the Seven Years' War, which revolve in the episode around the Battle o f the Plains o f Abraham, into a conflict between Canadians and Americans. This raises important questions about the series' intended audience, namely, whether this audience was meant to include Americans. Not surprisingly, this confusion is reflected in the content o f the C B C online discussion forums. One viewer wrote to congratulate the producers for having taught him more about "Canadian and American history" (see Roberts). It also raises questions about the likelihood that successful American historical miniseries (such  160  as the very popular P B S series The Civil War), as well as American films, were used as models for Canada: A People's History.  One sceptical viewer wrote to ask whether the  producers were aware o f the fact that the musical score resembled the score for the film The Last of the Mohicans (see Campbell). Starowicz himself seems to have had American television in mind as a model for the series, for he asserts that Canadians' lack o f interest in their o w n history is not a "problem [with] American television." Instead, the problem lies with "the relative absence o f Canadian equivalents" ( " A Nation Without Memory"). L i k e the hero o f Waverley, w h o m Scott characterizes as a mediocre individual caught up in major historical events despite himself, the heroes o f Canada: A People's History are, as the narrator explains in the first episode, "ordinary people caught up i n the great currents o f history" (See " W h e n the World Began"). Yet, in this instance, the visual imagery and the narrative are at odds with one another. The narrative presents even major historical figures as "ordinary" people whose public goals often interfere with their private aspirations. Thus, the viewer is told that Montcalm "would renounce every honour" to return to France to be with his wife, and that Wolfe intends to quit the military service once the Battle is over (see "Battle for a Continent"). The coffee-table book which derives from the series challenges, even more than the series itself, the notion that these are "ordinary" people. The "packaging" o f the book, along with its content, reveal that the producers envisioned a similar kind o f readers for the book as viewer for the series. The book is printed on glossy paper, is full o f maps o f Canada that change throughout the centuries, o f portraits o f famous historical figures, and artists' renditions o f famous historical events. In other words, the images lack those "ordinary" people and  161  instead, provide a colourful glimpse o f the past. The captions that go with the pictures are often anecdotal, including quotations from historical figures or anonymous writers (rarely, i f ever, properly documented). For example, the caption below the portrait o f Louis X V ' s mistress, Madame de Pompadour, reads as follows: Louis X V ' s mistress was described as a woman ' w h o m every man would have liked to have as his mistress and who was very tall for a woman, but not too fall. A round face, all the features regular, a superb complexion, very well made, a superb hand and arm, her eyes were rather pretty than large, but with a fire, a wit a vivacity that I have never seen in any other woman. She was rounded in all her forms as in all her movements.' (Gillmor 120) The representation o f women in both the series and the coffee-book is double-sided. O n the one hand, they are, like Madame de la Pompadour, represented as key political players. Madame de la Pompadour's adultery is thus represented as the source o f her agency as a powerful influence on political affairs. O n the other, as with the women portrayed in the historical fiction studied here, the women in Canada: A People's  History  symbolically define the limits o f national power as between men. The most notable o f the "women" would be the nation o f Canada itself, repeatedly gendered as female, the soil on which men's battles are won. Women, and Canada itself, are thus, as Anne M c C l i n t o c k suggests about the gendering o f nations in another context, "subsumed symbolically into the national body politic as its boundary and metaphoric limit" (354). Viewers in English Canada proved particularly responsive to the series' visual and aural effects, with one viewer writing to the C B C online discussion forum to say that  162  he "was very impressed with the quality o f the program. The acting, costumes, scenery, facts and the atmosphere were well presented, and entertaining" (see Estey). If the producers were out to make Canadian history memorable, then the medium o f television succeeded. More than anything, viewers wrote in to applaud the series' scope and vision, where vision is meant literally to refer to the grand scenery, and the scope o f the panoramas. Viewers repeatedly note their emotional responses to the visual effects, with one viewer admitting that "[q]uand je regardais M o n [sic] histoire j'avais des frissons sur tout le corps" (see Victor). While some viewers applauded the representation o f historical fact, their commentary more often focussed on the ways in which the music and the cinematography brought history to life. Canada: A People's History thus provides the imaginative and emotional expansiveness that the producers intended, but the fact and accuracy o f its representations remain a controversial subject for viewers. Significantly, viewers in English and French Canada seem, on the whole, to be divided on this point. Although many viewers wrote in to the online discussion forum on the C B C website to debate the accuracy o f the series' historical representations, French-Canadian participants in the forum seem, overall, to display a better knowledge o f their history, so that many were disappointed by the series, while, in English Canada, participants applauded the series for teaching them something new. The "newness" o f their history seemed, in some cases, to produce inaccuracies rather than to clarify them, as in the case o f a male participant, who wrote that, by watching the series, he learned which "groups o f people [Europeans and Natives] was [sic] more ' c i v i l i z e d ' . It's quite obvious that Europeans [sic] had little to contribute to humankind back then. We [have left] a legacy o f rapes, murders, and betrayals to show how 'superior' we were. Thankftilly today, we  163  are more enlightened" (see Cabana). French-Canadian viewers, by-and-large, questioned the series on a metadiscursive level, emphasizing not what they saw, but what the series had left out, and why: "[l]a responsabilite du scenario retenu, le choix des images, du decoupage . . . le choix des mots et des anecdotes appartiennent au realisateur(s)" (see Blanchet). Indeed, the notion that the series was "une representation fabriquee" appears frequently in the French-Canadian commentary, and is worth considering here. Earlier, in Chapter One, I discussed the critical debates that have arisen over the last few decades over Walter Scott's orchestration o f the pageant in honour o f the K i n g ' s visit to Edinburgh. These debates have centred on the nature o f such pageantry as an "invention" o f nationhood, and the degree to which such invention constitutes a forging, or a forgery (Hobsbawm, Trevor-Roper) of nationhood. In his Introduction to The Invention Tradition,  of  Hobsbawm suggests that "the peculiarity of'invented' traditions is that the  continuity with [the past] is largely factitious" ("Introduction" 2). Thus, to imagine a national identity involves one's submission to a kind o f hoax that undermines the very basis of the identity which people believe to constitute their nation. Tradition becomes "a myth masking real history" (Craig 13), and it was received as such by one French Canadian in particular, who called "cette histoire du Canada [sic]" a "genre de cliches" (see Boisbriand). The different responses to the series go beyond English and French Canadians' diverging approaches to evaluating the visual imagery. First o f all, the titles in English and French are, as historian Michael Bliss points out in his review, noticeably different (see Bliss "Canada's History Multiplies"). Canada: network under the title Canada:  une histoire  populaire.  A People's  History  aired on the S R C  The English-language title is  164  more declarative, announcing its status as a national history, comprised o f a variety o f people, o f cultures, thus capturing Starowicz's aims for the series. To identify the series as a "popular history," however, transforms the declaration o f nationhood in the Englishlanguage title into a less grandiose description o f a populace. Thus, Canada's history should appeal to viewers who inhabit its boundaries, as members o f this area. It also turns it into a fad, the product o f a moment, aimed at a general, and not a specialized, audience. I f a title is meant to direct national sentiment, then that direction is lacking in its title as a popular history. The overall qualitative differences between the English- and the French-Canadian participants in the online forums may also be the result o f the remarkably different ways in which the C B C and S R C website treat their forums. The S R C website is much easier to navigate, and the discussions are organized by episode and by week. The C B C website, by contrast, guided viewers' responses by asking them to respond to questions related to each episode. Thus, viewers were responding to such question as " H o w important was the fur trade in the political and economic development o f Canada?" and, simply, "What did you think o f Episode O n e ? ' (or, T w o , and so on). The questions in the forum were thus modeled after a classroom, and, indeed, seemed to attract more responses by young people than the S R C forum whose demographic seems to represent a wider range o f ages. The cultural rapprochement that he envisions the series thus seems to take place on English-Canadian terms. That is, by introducing English Canadians to their history, the series also function to introduce them to their lesser-known francophone partner.  165  A Literary C r i t i c ' s Response  Canada's inability to produce a national historian has preoccupied English-Canadian literary critics throughout the last century and a half. Ten years before Confederation, Thomas D ' A r c y M c G e e wrote a retrospective essay entitled "Protection for Canadian Literature," in which he linked Canada's chances o f producing a great national literature to its need to produce a great national historian: [ejvery country, every nationality, every people, must create and foster a National Literature, i f it is their wish to preserve a distinct individuality from other nations. If precautions are not taken to secure this end, the distinctive character and features o f a people must disappear;.. .[Canada has] not as yet produced a name renowned in literature—if we except the Historian o f Canada, M r Garneau, Judge Haliburton, and one or two others. (43) I f a nation requires a historian to ensure its cultural survival, then its history must be written according to romantic conventions for, as M c G e e stipulates, the Canadian literature that he envisions in the future "must assume the gorgeous coloring and the gloomy grandeur o f the forest. It must partake o f the grave mysticism o f the Red man, and the w i l d vivacity o f the hunter o f the western prairies" (44). M c G e e ' s Ossianic understanding o f the Canadian cultural landscape as shrouded i n mist and mystery results in an "otherization"of the Natives and the wilderness (similar, again, to how they  166  converge in Wacousta)  and a regionalized view o f Canada, where the prairies are just as  "other" to M c G e e (who lived in Montreal for much o f his later life) as the Natives. George Stewart, the owner and editor o f Stewart's  Literary  Quarterly  Magazine  (1867-1872) was much more critical than M c G e e i n his assessment o f Canada's literary and historical prospects. In a statement that Starowicz w i l l echo over a century later, Stewart declares that "[i]t is sad to contemplate the gross ignorance which prevails, even at this day, among our people in regard to the history of their country" (95). Acknowledging that Garneau's Histoire  du Canada  "both in French and English, is a  work of rare ability" Stewart claims Garneau for both French and English Canada by declaring h i m "a genuine Canadian Historian" (96). Garneau's work thus represents, to an English Canadian, how Canada's history should be narrated in order for Canada to compete with European nations in literary and historiographical achievements: "[a]ny accurate observer can write a book o f annals, but a life has to be devoted to literature ere such masterpieces are produced as Macaulay's 'History o f England'[.] . . . The charm o f such books depends as much on their style as on the information they convey, and such style is not so much the gift of nature as the product of art" (103). Garneau's Histoire,  a  celebration o f French Canadians' valorous contributions to the consolidation o f Canada (and, indeed, through their settlement around North America, to the development o f North America's culture and history) is written according to the romantic conventions outlined by M c G e e , and represents an important model for Stewart o f how a Canadian history should be written. The views o f M c G e e and Stewart about the romantic criteria for a national history and a national literature are typically Victorian, and are echoed in Europe by such  167  historians as Thomas Babington Macaulay in Britain and Augustin Thierry in France, for w h o m the emotive value o f history became especially important in the wake o f Scott. In his essay on "History," Macaulay invokes the model o f Scott's historical novels as standards for writing history. Recalling a stained-glass window in L i n c o l n Cathedral, said to have been constructed by an apprentice with the fragments o f glass rejected by his master, Macaulay states that "Sir Walter Scott, in the same manner [as the apprentice], has used those fragments o f truth which historians have scornfully thrown behind them, in a manner which may well excite their envy. He has constructed out of their gleanings works which, even considered as histories, are scarcely less valuable than theirs" (365). Macaulay's reference to historians' envy serves his purposes well: it encapsulates his larger argument that Scott has changed how history should effectively be written, and it points to the affective power o f Scott's novels which made them so popular. In France, Augustin Thierry, in his Histoire Normands  de la Conquete  de I'Angleterre  par  les  (1825), based his study of the Norman Conquest not only on chronicles, but on  Scotf s Ivanhoe  (1820). In particular, Thierry took on board the idea that the serious  divisions between Saxons and Normans continued after the Norman Conquest. Thierry had a pronounced influence on Garneau, whose atavistic understanding o f Canadian history as the product of historical antagonism between the English and the French derives from Thierry's understanding o f Norman-Anglo-Saxon relations. Because Garneau had such a powerful effect on French-Canadians' historical self-understanding in the nineteenth century, this genealogy o f influences enables us to trace Garneau, through Thierry, to Scott. French Canadians in the post-Garneau era emerged with a strong sense of self-understanding and, like Aubert de Gaspe in Les Anciens  Canadiens,  168 openly acknowledged their debt to Garneau's romantic nationalism. The inaugural issue o f the influential journal Les Soirees  canadiennes  is a case in point. The founding o f the  journal in February 1861, marked a defining moment in French-Canadian literary history. The journal went on to publish such disciples o f Garneau and notable poets and novelists as Henri-Raymond Casgrain who was (also its editor) and Philippe Aubert de Gaspe. The inaugural issue opened with the following epigraph from the French poet Charles Nodier: "[h]atons-nous de raconter les delicieuses histoires du peuple, avant q u ' i l les ait oubliees" (see Casgrain 66). Les Soirees  canadiennes  thus begins its issue with the  imperative to French Canadians that they employ the journal as an antiquarian tool and mnemonic device to rescue their history and customs from the potential threat o f oblivion. Garneau's romantic nationalism is apparent in the journal's opening imperative, and indeed sets the tone with which French-Canadian history w i l l be written in the following decades. Macaulay's reference to fragments o f glass as a metaphor for historical truth, which has to be moulded from various fragments into narrative shape, forecasts the connections between historical narrative, historical truth, and popular reading that Starowicz w i l l make in his plenary speech at the Montreal conference. Indeed, the English-Canadian view that Canada lacks a national historian has persisted well into the twentieth century, and can be said to constitute the motives for the production o f A People's  History.  Canada:  A s Starowicz maintains in his Foreword to the book, contemporary  Canadians lack not only a knowledge o f their past, but also (and, he suggests, more importantly) a narrative form that is at once authoritative and accessible to Canadians. The series' combinations o f literary modes and conventions, from the epistolary narrative  169  and diaries, to historical facts, thus harkens back to similar issues facing nationalist novelists in Britain and Canada in the nineteenth century respecting the literary modes and narrative voices necessary to write a history at once popular in its appeal, yet authoritative and convincing. In emigrating to Canada, Irishmen like M c G e e (and Scotsmen like John A . MacDonald) contributed to the political foundation o f Canada. Yet, as I have discussed throughout this dissertation, Irish and Scots immigrants imported their o w n narratives, which became (as in M c G e e ' s literary historical essays) foundational to Canadians' efforts to build a national literature. In my examination of'"transcolonial circuits,'" I 3  have explored what historical fiction in the nineteenth century and a television series in the early twenty-first have to tell us about the ways in which Canadian history has been written and taught to Canadians. Francois-Xavier Garneau was phenomenally successful because he gave French and English Canadians the tools with which to write history. Similarly, Thomas Chandler Haliburton provided material for both English and French Canadians to adapt to their o w n narratives o f history. M y dissertation intervenes i n the current historiographical debates i n Canada (the power o f which is evident in the complicated production o f Canada: A People's History) by arguing that Starowicz's conception o f historiography for the "television age," a postmodern approach whose newness he repeatedly asserts, deserves itself to be historicized, for its roots lie in the comprehensive work being done on Irish and Scottish literature.  170  Starowicz is the most recent in a line o f Canadian cultural critics (be they television producers, literary critics, or novelists) to evoke a metaphor o f illness or disease in describing Canadian society. For Starowicz, Canada's "illness" is a loss o f consciousness which results in a rupture in the collective memory, and an ensuing inability to construct a narrative o f historical self-understanding. For Margaret Atwood, Canadians' "mental illness" is "paranoid schizophrenia" (Afterword 62), whose effects she describes in literary, or narratological, terms. Referring to her disappointment at reading Susanna Moodie's Roughing It in the Bush and Life in the Clearings (1853), Atwood explains that "the books had little shape: they were collections o f disconnected anecdotes." She concludes that "what struck me most about [Moodie's] personality was the way in which it reflects many o f the obsessions still with us" (62). Thus, Moodie, through her disconnected narrative, comes to stand synecdochically for Canada. Like Starowicz's "Canadians," Susanna Moodie also cannot manage to create a coherent narrative o f herself. Northrop Frye's concept of the garrison mentality, although not described in terms o f a disease, also defines Canadians by their state o f mind, which prevents them from constructing a coherent national identity. Frye's concept refers to the fortress mentality at the root o f Canadian consciousness, caused by what he suggests is their fear of the wilderness. This fear results in Canadians' alienation from the land and from one another. Historically, he suggests, this has resulted in their inability to move beyond a regionalized to a national understanding o f themselves. There is a different kind o f historical uncovering currently taking place in Grand-Pre, where extensive excavations has begun to unearth the remains o f what is believed to be the original church, which was burned by the British during the Deportation. Geologists have examined the rocks, which show signs o f having been exposed to extreme heat. They also imported their hostilities. M c G e e was murdered on Parliament H i l l by a Fenian. The coffee-table book describes the murder as follows: "[s]hortly after 1:00 a.m., M c G e e left the House, lit a cigar, and walked to Mrs. Trotter's boarding house on Sparks Street, where he stayed while in Ottawa. It would be his birthday in six days, and he was looking forward to returning to Montreal to celebrate it with his wife and family. A s he was turning his key in the block, he was shot in the head and died immediately." It was generally believed that "the murder was the work o f Fenian terrorists. Patrick James Whelan was arrested within twenty-four hours. He was tried and found guilty, though he maintained his innocence, and it was never proven that he was a Fenian" (Gillmor 279). 2  3  171  Bibliography  " A Summer o f Festivities at Saint-Jean-Port-Joli." Destinations Quebec Home Page. 1 Jul. 2002  <http://destinationsquebec.webbyzz.com/bqc/dq_  detail.asp?L A N G = e n & n o = 1013>. Alderson, David. 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