The Question of Separatism: Quebec and the Struggle Over Sovereignty

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Baraka Books, 2011 - Political Science - 154 pages
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This new enriched edition of Jane Jacobs’ third book with an exclusive 2005 interview appears to mark the fifth anniversary of her death. The incomparable Jane Jacobs passed away on April 25, 2006. Undeniably a genius on urban issues, Jane Jacobs also grappled with the question of nations and political sovereignty. Out of print since the mid 80s, The Question of Separatism, Quebec and the Struggle Over Sovereignty now includes a new preface and an exclusive and previously unpublished 2005 interview conducted in Jane Jacobs’ Toronto home just a year before she died. Using her renowned ability to observe the real world, Jane Jacobs discusses the timeless issues that affect—or afflict—debate on separatism in the world. These include emotion, national size and the paradoxes of size, duality and federation. She also delves into the specifics of Quebec-Canada relations and casts her experienced and penetrating gaze on two great cities, Montreal and Toronto.

Jacobs’ study of how Norway became independent from Sweden peacefully and how both countries prospered remains acutely relevant. She suggests Canada can learn from their example and find win-win solutions.

In the 2005 interview she shows how history has proven her right, discusses reaction to the book, and addresses burning issues like tar sands development in Alberta, the future of the Euro, and causes of financial and economic crises. The Question of Separatism is essential reading for anybody who has been influenced by her other great books.

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About the author (2011)

Jane Jacobs was the author of Cities and the Wealth of Nations, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, and The Economy of Cities. Robin Philpot is the author of six books in French on Quebec and international politics, and he is the coauthor of A People's History of Quebec. He lives in Montreal.

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