Afterword: Solidarity as the Boldness of Modesty

Dilemmas of Solidarity: Rethinking Redistribution in the Canadian Federation, S. Choudhry, J.-F. Gaudreault-DesBiens & L. Sossin, eds. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2006) pp. 206-216.

7 Pages Posted: 14 Sep 2017 Last revised: 16 Sep 2017

See all articles by Sujit Choudhry

Sujit Choudhry

Center for Global Constitutionalism, WZB Berlin Social Science Center

Jean-François Gaudreault-DesBiens

University of Montreal - Faculty of Law

Lorne Sossin

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School

Date Written: 2006

Abstract

The Constitution Act, 1867 is a conservative, if not uninspiring, document. It shies away from grand declarations about who Canadians were, or were to be. The framers were showing the boldness of modesty, rooted in a prescience about the possibilities, but also the limits, of a federation that overlaps with a truly federal society. Such modesty was mandated because the evolution of the Canadian federation would inevitably be evaluated from very different, and often, conflicting perspectives — various conceptions of community, democracy, and functionality. The Constitution Act, 1867 inevitably calls for an incessant balancing of these perspectives in both the political and juridical realms. Contemporary debates about fiscal federalism and redistribution continue to raise more or less the same questions. But if the questions have not changed much, the manner and circumstances in which they are posed have changed dramatically.

Suggested Citation

Choudhry, Sujit and Gaudreault-DesBiens, Jean-François and Sossin, Lorne, Afterword: Solidarity as the Boldness of Modesty (2006). Dilemmas of Solidarity: Rethinking Redistribution in the Canadian Federation, S. Choudhry, J.-F. Gaudreault-DesBiens & L. Sossin, eds. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2006) pp. 206-216.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3026200

Sujit Choudhry (Contact Author)

Center for Global Constitutionalism, WZB Berlin Social Science Center ( email )

Reichpietschufer 50
D-10785 Berlin, 10785
Germany

Jean-François Gaudreault-DesBiens

University of Montreal - Faculty of Law ( email )

Montreal, Quebec
Canada

Lorne Sossin

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

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