Attitudes to Social Structure and Mobility in Upper Canada, 1815-1840
|Author: ||Russell, Peter|
Examines popular attitudes in Upper Canada regarding social structure and the degree of social mobility that was thought possible during the period from 1815 to 1840, when Upper Canada was viewed as a "poor man's country" where all could "be laird" and prosper but was also characterized by a set of fixed social strata.
". . . an insightful and original analysis. . . . draw[s] upon an extraordinary range of sources. [Russell] isolate[s] seven 'factors' which he contends influenced an individual's chances of economic and social progress: sex and marriage, education, religion, ethnicity, race, political patronage and character. His treatment of these is careful and subtle. . . . Another of the book's merits lies in its treatment of the place of women in Upper Canadian society, a subject which historians of Upper Canada, especially male historians of Upper Canada, have usually ignored. . . an innovative and thoughtful book, which can be strongly recommended to all students of the history of Upper Canada." - J. K. Johnson
". . . it does contain many fascinating insights and is certainly thought-provoking." - The Ontario Historical Society