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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Elusive Destiny

The Political Vocation of John Napier Turner

A political biography extraordinaire, Elusive Destiny reveals the inner workings of the Liberal Party in its heyday as charted through the meteoric rise and fall of John Napier Turner. It highlights Turner’s vision for the country and tallies the political price he paid when he deviated from the Trudeau legacy on matters such as language rights, social spending, and Quebec. It also provides a new perspective on federal politics from the 1960s through the 1980s while giving John Turner his rightful place in Canadian history.


536 pages


Table of Contents

Foreword by John English

Introduction: The Right Man at the Wrong Time

PART 1: LIBERAL APPRENTICE, 1929-68

1 The Making of an Extrovert

2 Circling Home

3 Getting Ahead in Canadian Politics

4 Shoals of Candidacy

5 Close to Power

PART 2: MASTER POLITICIAN, 1968-79

6 Driving the Omnibus

7 Implementing the Just Society

8 Apprehended Insurrection

9 Intranational Diplomacy

10 Shokku

1 1 The Price of Gas

12 Stalking Stagflation

13 Citizen Turner

PART 3: LEADERSHIP, 1979-88

14 A Myth and a Muddle

15 Oiling the Tinman

16 Prime Minister for a Day

17 Things Fall Apart

18 The Road Back

19 Participatory Democracy

20 Creature from the Black Lagoon

21 Image, Substance, and Subversion

22 Mad Dog and Businessmen

Conclusion: Legacies and Might-Have-Beens

Notes

Selected Bibliography

Index

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