IV edycja Ogólnopolskiego Konkursu Wiedzy o Kanadzie

Discover Canada 2017




Prosimy dokładnie przeczytać tematy esejów oraz ustosunkować się do wszystkich aspektów określonej problematyki sugerowanych
w pomocniczych pytaniach

W czasie półfinału zostaną wylosowane trzy tematy, z których uczestnik wybiera jeden.



  1. The 150th Anniversary of Confederation in 2017 is a good time for reflection on the contributions of Polish immigrants and Canadian citizens of Polish ancestry to the building of this country, considered by many as one of the most desirable places to live in the 21stcentury.  Select three areas of Polish Canadian culture, be it literature,  history,  politics, business,  film,  visual arts,  music,  sports or three historical and/or contemporary figures, which you consider most important for the building of Canada’s value system.  Write an essayin which you specify first what the Canadian values are, and then discuss how the selected areas of Polish Canadian culture or historical and/or contemporary figures of Polish diaspora in Canada  have been shaping them,  contributing to them or enhancing them.


  1. Write an essay in which you examine the history of Canada’s road to total independence from Great Britain. When did Canada formally become independent? Which historical events have led to this specific event and what other series of events followed on the road towards its total independence? Discuss the topic with reference to key dates and events and explain how they have been crucial in leading Canada to independence from its mother country.



  1. Sir Wilfrid Laurier, known as “the Great Conciliator,” is regarded as one of Canada’s most eloquent and illustrious Prime Ministers.  Leading Canada through fifteen of its most formative years, Laurier strongly believed that the development of Canada’s West was pivotal for the stimulation of the country’s economy. By means of his tolerance and systematic compromise resolving numerous contentious issues which set Canadians against each other, Laurier was able to solidify the country into a Confederation with the addition of two provinces and, as a result, he brought the country to the status of nationhood. During his years in office, Laurier’s leanings towards a political middle ground resulted in the improvement of Canada’s position relative to the United States and Great Britain. The time of Canada’s renewed growth and prosperity was the result of Laurier’s actions and that period was called the ‘Laurier Era’. Discuss the so-called ‘Laurier Era’. What was the “Sunny Way?” How did Laurier reconcile the interests of English and French Canada with his policies? What was the Laurier-Greenway agreement? How did he encourage the development of and immigration to Canada’s western territories? What events triggered the worldwide interest in the Canadian West? What were Laurier’s nation-building accomplishments? Why was Laurier defeated in the Canadian federal election of 1911? What is the proudest achievement of Canadian liberalism?



  1. With the arrival of the first Europeans in Canada, Canadian territories and landscape underwent a tsunami of tumultuous changes.  The circumstances and effects of exploration, industrialization, urbanization, and trade manifest themselves differently across diverse regions. The European newcomers, seeking new forms of wealth in the distant land, began to exploit and restructure the Canadian landscape by settlement, agriculture, mining, logging, and other enterprises. Massive projects, such as the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway, were undertaken in order to increase settlement in western Canada, open up new markets, and enhance the development of the nation. Many of the causes include fragmentation of forest ecosystems from large-scale industrial logging and clearing for industrial and urban development, pollution from mining and smelting, draining of lakes for agriculture and several others. Write an essay in which you discuss the immense transformation and industrialization of the Canadian landscape since the arrival of European newcomers. Examine big projects which had an immense impact onto the landscape transformation. Who were the principal promoters of Canada’s industrial development? What was the role of the Chinese immigrants in restructuring Canadian territories? What happened to traditional Indigenous peoples’ lands? What were the economic and industrial impacts onto emerging urban centres? What challenges did the workers encounter in the construction of railways? What was the purpose of the 49th Parallel?



  1. Write an essay in which you discuss the significance of oral stories and storytelling in the life of the First Nations in Canada by drawing examples from at least two stories and explaining what they signify or teach. What kind of knowledge do they convey? What has been their role throughout the history of the First Nations? In what ways are oral stories and the tradition of storytelling important today? What is their cultural value? How is storytelling understood as an act of resistance? How are oral histories used in a legal context?



  1. Canada has developed as a non-violent peaceful nation whose values include freedom (as freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom of peaceful assembly),  equality (respect for the rights of all people), respect for cultural differences (recognition and appreciation of cultures and traditions of all Canadians), civic participation, community involvement and cultural sovereignty,  just to name a few them.  The respect for the law encapsulated in the motto „peace, order, and good government” and  grounded in democratic values, led to the development of a unique federal style of government based on compromise, co-existence and commitment to social justice. In the past,  however,  there were several black chapters in Canada’s history which reveal that policies and attitudes of earlier Canadian governments led to a severe mistreatment of the country’s Indigenous people and several groups of Canadian citizens and immigrants. Select one of these groups and write an essay in which you examine how the policies of specific governments defied the values the country has been proud of.  Focus on specific values and use them as a context for the discussion of the mistreatment of the group you have chosen to examine in this essay.



  1. The paintings of Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun can be read as a general commentary on the status and situation of Indigenous people in the Northwest coast of Canada. Select three of his paintings and write an essay in which you discuss specific issues addressed in them. Compare Yuxweluptun’s art with the visual art project of the Group of Seven painters.  Enumerate several features of the Group’s landscape painting to show the vision of Canadianness they promote and contrast this vision with  Yuxweluptun’s views on Canada. Moreover, reflect on the choice of Yuxweluptun’s artistic techniques to convey his ideas.