The Canadian Magazine Dispute On Canadian National Identity Essay

1132 Words May 30th, 2016 5 Pages
The Canadian Magazine Dispute

One of the most prominent conflicts with implications for cultural concerns that turned into a trade dispute concerned the selling of magazines in Canada.

Today, 89 percent of magazines sold in Canada are foreign, a high percentage of which are American. In spite of the low proportion of domestically produced magazines in Canada, the Canadian government has nonetheless identified the production of magazines as an important touchstone of Canadian national identity. In 1970, a special Canadian governmental Committee on Mass Media concluded that “Magazines constitute the only national press we possess in Canada….Magazines, because of their freedom from daily deadlines, can aspire to a level of excellence that is seldom attainable in other media. Magazines, in a different way from any other medium, can help foster in Canadians a sense of themselves.” (Davey et al, 1970)

Attempts to protect Canadian culture from domination by its much larger neighbor to the south are not new. As far back as the 1920s, the Canadian government imposed protective tariffs on foreign magazines. In 1965, Canada furthermore prohibited the importation of split-run editions of foreign-published magazines into their country. Many observers believed that these measures were quite effective in protecting the small remaining share of Canada’s domestically produced magazines.

What is a Domestic Periodical?

Up until a couple of decades ago it was a fairly simple matter to…

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