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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Religion and Canadian Party Politics

Religion is usually thought of as inconsequential to contemporary Canadian politics. This book takes a hard look at just how much influence faith continues to have in federal, provincial, and territorial arenas. Drawing on case studies from across the country, it explores three important axes of religiously based contention – Protestant vs. Catholic, conservative vs. reformer, and, more recently, opponents vs. defenders of accommodating minority religious practices. Although the extent of partisan engagement with each of these sources of conflict has varied across time and region, the authors show that religion still matters in shaping political oppositions. These themes are illuminated by comparisons to the role faith plays in the politics of other Western industrialized societies.

448 pages

Table of Contents


Introduction: Faith and Party Politics in Canada

Part 1: Federal Politics

1 Conservative Faith and Federal Parties

2 Abortion Politics and Federal Parties

Part 2: Persistent Denominationalism in Provincial Politics

3 Religion in Atlantic Provincial Politics: The Special Cases of Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick

4 Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives and Tenacious Denominational Politics, 1943–85

Part 3: Religious Conservatism and the Partisan Right

5 Sexual Diversity and the Mobilization of Faith Communities in Ontario, 1986–2015

6 The Declining Influence of Conservative Faith in Alberta since 1971

7 Schooling, Sexuality, and Religious Conservatism in British Columbia Politics

Part 4: Canada’s Most Distinctive Regions

8 Conflicted Secularism in Francophone Quebec Party Politics

9 Evangelical Christianity and Northern Territorial Politics

Conclusion: Canadian Diversity in Comparative Context

Notes; Index

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