Au journal The Gazette, Jocelyn Létourneau commente le programme d’enseignement de l’histoire au Québec et son influence sur la conscience historique des jeunes Québécois.
Université Laval professor Jocelyn Létourneau, Canada Research Chair in Quebec Contemporary History, a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and a fellow of the Trudeau Foundation, warned against becoming “alarmist” over the content in a given history course.
Létourneau said youngsters pick up history from a variety of sources, not just history text books. They learn from films, songs, public debates, news coverage.
“But wherever they get their knowledge, young francophones in Quebec have a defeatist, melancholy vision of Quebec’s historical experience,” Létourneau said. “They think Quebec has been had, including by anglophones.”
The goal of a history course, he said, is to open young people’s minds.
“They should be exposed to different interpretations, not with the idea that you can interpret history however you want, but to make them understand that history is made up of grey; it’s neither white or black, but extremely complex and nuanced. The past is infinitely complex,” he said.