Liberty and Community

Canadian Federalism and the Failure of the Constitution

By Robert C. Vipond

Subjects: Political Science
Paperback : 9780791404669, 260 pages, January 1991
Hardcover : 9780791404652, 260 pages, January 1991

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Table of contents


1. Introduction

2. Confederation and the Federal Principle

3. Provincial Autonomy and Self-Government

4. Provincial Autonomy and Imperialism

5. Provincial Autonomy and the Rule of Law

6. Provincial Autonomy and the Division of Powers





This book examines the competing visions of liberty and community in Canada. Focusing attention on constitutional debate in Ontario after the Confederation of 1867, the author shows how the defenders of provincial autonomy constructed a powerful political and legal ideology that attempted to reconcile liberty and community.


"This book furnishes an interesting contrast to the development of federal-state relationships in the United States, and it throws considerable light on the current debate in Canada over the interpretation of the new Charter of Rights and Liberties. Although this is fundamentally a historical study, it truly informs our understanding of the present and gives the reader a penetrating insight into the character of the Canadian public mind. This book is truly an important chapter in the history of Canadian constitutionalism.

"The competing Canadian vision of community that Vipond delineates so well and the ultimate synthesis between liberty and community that he thinks is possible in the light of the Ontario experience cannot help but provide an interesting model for a better arrangement of rights and responsibilities in the United States. " — Donald P. Kommers, Notre Dame Law School