The Blue Shirts: Adrien Arcand and Fascist Anti-Semitism in Canada

The Blue Shirts: Adrien Arcand and Fascist Anti-Semitism in Canada


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While Adolf Hitler was seizing power in Germany, Adrien Arcand was laying the foundations in Quebec for his Parti national social chrétien. The Blue Shirts, as its members were called, wore a military uniform and prominently displayed the swastika. Arcand saw Jewish conspiracy wherever he turned and his views resonated with his followers who, like him, sought a scapegoat for all the ills eroding society.

Even after his imprisonment during the Second World War, the fanatical Adrien Arcand continued his correspondence with those on the frontlines of anti-semitism. Until his death in 1967, he pursued his campaign of propaganda against communists and Jews.

Hugues Théorêt describes a dark period in Quebec’s ideological history using an objective approach and careful, rigorous research in this book, which won the 2015 Canada Prize (Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780776624679
Publisher: University of Ottawa Press
Publication date: 05/16/2017
Series: Canadian Studies
Edition description: Translatio
Pages: 415
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Hugues Théorêt holds a PhD in History (University of Ottawa). A journalist, media relations officer and intergovernmental affairs consultant, he has collaborated on a number of documentary series for television on the history of Canada. He is also editor of a historical journal in the Outaouais region and lectures on fascism and anti-semitism in Canada.

Ferdinanda Van Gennip is the translator of several works of non-fiction, including A Nation Beyond Borders: Lionel Groulx on French-Canadian Minorities by Michel Bock (University of Ottawa Press, 2014), Breaking Point: Quebec/Canada, the 1995 Referendum by Mario Cardinal (Bayard Canada/CBC, 2005) and How to Befriend Your Shadow by John Monbourquette (Darton, Longman and Todd, 2001). She holds a BA in French Translation and French-Canadian Studies from Queen’s University and an MDiv from the Toronto School of Theology.

Howard Scott translates poetry, fiction and non-fiction, often with co-translator Phyllis Aronoff, including works by Madeleine Gagnon, Kim Doré and Madeleine Monette, as well as numerous scholarly works in the humanities. He has also published translations of poetry by Madeleine Gagnon, Michel Pleau and Natasha Kanapé Fontaine, and science fiction by Élisabeth Vonarburg. In 1997, he won the Governor General’s Literary Award for English translation for The Euguelion, by Louky Bersianik. He is a past president of the Literary Translators’ Association of Canada.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

Preface xi

Introduction 1

Chapter I Le Goglu Builds its Nest 13

Arcand's Parents 17

Studies 19

The Journalist 21

Leisure Pursuits 23

Chapter II Le Goglu Takes Flight 27

Quebec in 1929 27

Le Miroir 29

Le Goglu 31

L'Ordre Patriotique des Goglus 35

The "David Bill" on Jewish Schools 37

Jewish Immigration to Quebec 43

The Achat chez nous Campaign 44

Arcand and R. B. Bennett's Conservatives 50

Dr. Lalanne 60

The "Bercovitch Bill" on Hate Propaganda 64

Chapter III The Blue Shirts 71

Le Patriote 75

The National Social Christian Party 82

Le Fasciste canadien 89

The Choquette Affair 94

Arcand Advocates for Canadian Unity 100

Arcand Supports Maurice Duplessis 104

Arcand Outside Quebec 106

Watchful Eye of the RCMP 109

Incidents of Violent Anti-Semitism in Canada 110

Fascist Little Italy 114

A Split in the PNSC 116

Anticosti Island Controversy 117

Chapter IV The Key to the Mystery 125

The Influence of Édouard Drumont 130

Protocols of the Elders of Zion 132

The Protocols in Quebec 139

The Key to the Mystery 141

Chapter V The Canadian Union of Fascists 153

The National Unity Party of Canada 154

Arcand Abandons the Swastika 157

Arcand Preaches Canadian Corporatism 159

The Party's Principles 165

Le Combat national 167

Against War 170

Canadian Fascists Under Scrutiny by the Authorities 173

Power Hungry 176

The Opposition Goes on the Offensive 179

Chapter VI Arrests and Internments 187

Canada Goes to War Against Germany 187

Raid at Arcand's Party Headquarters 191

Arrests 194

Arcand's Internment 196

Life Behind Barbed Wire 199

Efforts to Obtain Arcand's Release 201

"Mr. Montreal" 203

Chapter VII Liberation 207

Arcand's Political Failures 210

Chapter VIII The Cold War Years 215

Anti-Communism in Quebec 216

Le Goglu Picks Up its Refrain 219

La République Universelle 221

"Social reconstruction is inevitable" 223

L'Unité nationale Reborn 224

Is the unrest troubling our world today intentional? 227

Chapter IX Post-War Anti-Semitic Correspondence 231

Chapter X Arcand's Legacy 255

Serviam and the Fleur-de-Lys 257

À bas la haine! 262

Arcand Denies the Holocaust 264

Arcand and the State of Israel 267

Arcand and the Second Vatican Council 268

La Révolte du Matérialisme 272

Ottawa Examines Hate Propaganda 273

Ernst Zündel 277

Tributes to Arcand 279

Death of Arcand 287

Arcand's Heirs 288

Arcand Before the Judgment of History 289

From Communism to Internationalism 291

Serviam Reborn 292

Conclusion 299

The Historiographical Debates 305

Bibliography 311

Index 317

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