Quebec History Marianopolis College

Date Published:
May 2006

L’Encyclopédie de l’histoire du Québec / The Quebec History Encyclopedia


Three models of integration of immigrants



Claude Bélanger,

Department of History,

Marianopolis College

Anglo (French) Conformity:

This model assumes that the basic tenet of immigration and integra­tion has to be the maintenance of the English (French) institutions, language and cultural patterns as dominant and standard in Canada and to which all must, ultimately, conform. Bound to this concept are often found assumptions of racial superiority and nativistic attitudes. The purpose of this concept is to strip the immigrant of his native language, culture and sentiments of attachment and make him into a Canadian along Anglo (French) lines. This is to be done rapidly, particularly through schools, religious, political and economical institutions. However, immigrants who least have a chance to fit into the Anglo (French) character of Canada by reason of their cultural, linguistic and political background are far less likely to be taken by Canada than those who "blend in" easily and immediately.


The melting pot:

A more generous concept than the previous one, it envisioned a biological/cultural merging of the various people of Europe (never of immigrants from Africa and Asia) who would thus create, under the peculiar North American environmental conditions, a new cultural, biological and political type - a Canadian. It has been argued that there might have been a triple melting pot concept: Protestant, Catholic and Jewish.


Multiculturalism, Mosaic, Cultural Pluralism:

Postulates that immigrant cultures and languages are positive and that many aspects of these ought to be preserved. Integration politically and economically into Canadian society is still made while at the same time retaining many elements of the former culture. Canada, with these cultural contributions, is seen as a nation "enriched" with the cultural values of many lands coexisting peacefully together in the country.


see Milton M. GORDON, "Assimilation in America: Theory and Reality", in Daedalus, Vol. XC (1961): 163-185


© 2006 Claude Bélanger, Marianopolis College