Has Canada’s Geography and Historic Development Impacted its Politics?
More than half of North America is within the country of Canada. The island within the North and Coast of the Archipelago is described as Canada. There have been concerns about the role played by various features in Canadian politics. The physical features of Canada are unevenly distributed across the country. This is also linked to the uneven distribution of natural resources within the country. Due to the differences in distribution, Canada often faces uneven development, with the more fertile regions having greater development than other regions. This has made the poorer areas to continue languishing in poverty such as in the areas that harbor the aboriginals (Dunk). As the physical features in the country, the human population in the country also varies significantly. This is attributed to ethnicity, as well as to the history of the country. Canadian history and developments have thus been associated with present day politics in Canada.
Before the 1600, the present day Canada was inhabited by Native Americans. This however changed following the settlement of French and British colonialists in the area, since they considered it to be a good place for trapping and trading in fur. With the end of colonialism, the effects of colonization have not left the country. The Canadian people speak both French and English as the national languages. The Canadian country is thus divided with most of the parts colonized by the French specking French while the other parts of the country are predominantly English speaking. The geographical diversity of the country also influences the present day development of Canada immensely. Canada is characterized by great expanses of wilderness especially to the northern areas. This is because despite its significant size (about 3 million square miles), the country is not densely populated. Most of the land is thus utilized for large scale farming of grains for local consumption as well as for export purposes (Klodawsky and others).
The diversity of natural resources in Canada has the potential of aiding the development of the country. However, due to the uneven distribution of these resources, it has been established that some parts of the country are well endowed while others stay in poverty. The distribution of natural resources in the country has also led to unequal development, with areas that are more endowed being the focus of greater development efforts than other areas.
Based on the natural surroundings of the country, it can be said that the defense of Canada is also strong enough. A vast ocean surrounds the country, making the United States the only probable source of attack for Canada. This implies that with the strong relations that exist between the US and Canada, there is virtually no possibility of attack against the country. The country uses a parliamentary system based on elections. This system was adapted from the British colonialists to the country. Despite the strength of the system in Canada, the system has been compromised with regards to building sustainable political coalitions (Bourne and Rose).
Although the compromise may be viewed as negative, it has helped the country to achieve the greater benefit of the entire nation with regards to election freedom and efficiency. The political impacts of the various characteristics associated with Canada can only be linked to greater political effectiveness. Disparity between French and English speaking factions in the country has led to comparable development of the entire nation due to competition of interests. However, the competition between the Quebec faction and the entire Canadian political system still exists. The geographical differences have also made it possible for the government to include all interested political parties to enhance development.
Bourne, Larry S and Damaris Rose. “The changing face of Canada: The uneven geographies of
population and social change.” Canadian Geographer 45.1 (2001): 105.
Dunk, Thomas. “National culture, political economy and socio-cultural anthropology in English
Canada.” Dunk, Thomas (2000): 131.
Klodawsky, Fran, Susan Farrell and Tim D’Aubry. “Images of homelessness in Ottawa:
Implications for local politics.” Canadian Geographer (2002): 126-143.
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