notes about the map


 this page still under construction….

The map is not very scientific. Maybe satisfying political divisions must be arbitrary to some degree. With these imaginary provinces I have grouped together people who seem to have a significant commonality, and separated those who don’t. Borders usually (but not always) follow divides between river drainage basins. The three metropoli are quite modest in area, but other urban communities have lots of nearby  hinterland, just not as much as  before. Except for Prince Edward Island, I have made it a point to leave no current province unaltered. It’s all just my opinions, and if you think some boundary is misplaced or some name is wrong, please leave a comment. Also, please leave a comment if you want to tell me about some provincial separatist campaign you know of that I have missed. It’s all purely artwork, meant to inspire or challenge preconceived ideas and strongly held convictions, in a safe venue. (See the institution of Things in the next main chapter). I guess I am asking myself, and you: what is the meaning, what is the intent, of provinces in Canada?

I just found this Wikipedia list, a good overview, though not complete, I think.

In each of the descriptions below, I’ve included a guess at the number of people living in each province. The logical conclusion, from this map and this chapter, would be to assign each province the proper number of ridings in Parliament so that a linear graph is generated when each province’s Decisiveness is plotted against their population, and maybe also to investigate the effect of an inclusive 3E senate on the graph. I have not done that yet, and I don’t have a plan to. It is a trial and error process, and with 32 members, that is a lot of permutations (4.3 billion) to do for each trial run. If any reader has the resources and inclination, please have a go and tell me what you came up with.

  1.  Nunavut
    • Already established as of 1999, added the Ungava and Torngat peninsulas from what is currently far northern Québec and Labrador, and added the rest of the arctic archipelago in the west. The name means ‘Our land’ in the Inuit language.
    • There would be about 40,000 Nunavummiut.
  2. Cape Labrador
    • This is a new province, that combines the current southern Labrador and the north shore of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The current provincial border that divides Labrador and Québec is not formally accepted by the government of Québec since 1927, and quarreling between people in St. John’s and Québec city has paralyzed development in this area. Now the people there will have a degree of control over what happens there. Both French- and English-speaking families live on both sides of the border, and have done so since the 1700’s. The word ‘Cape’ is in the name to distinguish it from the ‘Coast’ of Labrador, and the new province is indeed a cape, but I could not find a formal name for this geographic feature. Cape Laurentide? Anybody know?
    • There would be about 37,000 Caper Labradorans.
  3. Newfoundland
    • Now not including Labrador. I know that there are people in Newfoundland that would see this as a historic loss; the Governor of the British Colony of Newfoundland was first assigned supervisory powers over ‘the coasts of Labrador’ back in 1763. My intent is to let Cape Labrador grow, not stunt Newfoundland. Look at how all the other parts of Canada are rearranged and you will see I am not picking on Newfoundland. The entire island of Newfoundland is a good hinterland for the people urban centers on the Avalon peninsula.
    • There would be about 490,000 Newfoundlanders.
  4. Gaspésie
    • A new maritime province, the Gaspé peninsula and the French-speaking communities in the north parts of present day New Brunswick. The French-speaking  and English-speaking communities get along reasonably well in the current province of New Brunswick, this division is in part because I didn’t want to leave any current province unaltered, and because the province of Gaspésie as proposed is viable and would be a good place to live.
    • There would be about 385,000 Gaspésians.
  5. Cape Breton
    • Now this is a whole island and it is named as a cape. Maybe should be Cape Breton Island?
    • There would be about 138,000 Cape Bretoners.
  6. Prince Edward Island
    • This province is too small and to distinct to be reasonably divided into smaller units or connected with another jurisdiction. But, the earlier name for present day Prince Edward Island, when it was part of New France, was Île Saint-Jean. And when it fell into the British Empire, the first thought was to just Anglicize the name, so we would have a third St. John’s in the maritimes. And before all that, it was called Epekwitk, the cradle in the waves.
    • There would be about 147,000 Prince Edward Islanders.
  7. Nova Scotia
  8. New Brunswick
  9. Québec
  10. Montrealty
  11. Outouais
  12. Eastern Ontario
  13. Torontonia
  14. Mistassini
  15. Abitibi
    • The name applied to the area before it was applied to the river. The Algonquin word Abitibi means literally  ‘half way water’ and that could have to do with the multiple river systems that flow into James Bay there. In the context of a new province, it could mean that it straddles the present day border between Ontario and Québec. Then again, perhaps it is that people there are realists, neither optimists nor pessimists.
    • There would be about 270,000 Abitibiens.
  16. Georgia
    • The Americans have one. The Caucus Mountains have one. Why not us too? Named after the other Great Lake. Cottage country and mining country.
  17. Western Ontario
  18. Nianansipia
    • India has the Punjab, so why not us? The five river systems are the Albany, the Attawapiskat, the Winisk, the Severn, and the Hayes. A land of consistent high winds, perhaps to be harnessed and sold as green power. Mining, hunting fishing, camping, ecoturism.
    • There would be about 75,000 Nianansipians.
  19. Aurora
    • This name comes from 1971, long ago. I was a kid and went with my family to visit the newly opened theme-park island of Ontario Place, and I recall we had a great time though the details have faded. In my memory, one thing that happened was that we passed a display on a wall, with some pamphlets and some kind of poster, about people in northern Ontario communities, from Sudbury to Kenora, promoting, in a very friendly way, the idea of a new province. In my cloudy recollection, the proposed name for this new province was Aurora. Since then, I have looked again for that reference, but with no success. Does anybody out there remember such a proposal? (There is a town in southern Ontario called Aurora, but I don’t think this has any relation to the new province proposal.)
    • There would be about 200,000 Aurorans.
  20. Athabaska
  21. Manitoba
  22. Winnipeg
  23. Saskatchewan
  24. Mackenzie
    • This province came very close to being called Bob on this map.  The name ranked high in a recent referendum. It is (mostly) the drainage basin of the mighty MacKenzie River below Great Slave Lake.  The Scottish explorer Alexander Mackenzie himself named it Disappointment River when he reached its mouth on the Arctic coast, not the Pacific coast, where he had hoped to arrive. The older name for this river is Deh Cho in the Dene language, or Kuukpak in Inuvialuktun, which in either case means Big River (ie Mississippi). MacKenzie itself means ‘Family of Coinnich’, which could mean something like ‘Family get-together’. So, quite a lot of interesting choices for names. What would the residents call themselves? Bobbies? The Disappointed? Attendees?
    • There would be about 42,000 MacKenzers.
  25. Peace
  26. West Newfoundland
  27. North Saskatchewan
  28. Alberta
  29. Yukon
    • Another great river, in the Locheux native language.
    • There would be about 34,000 Yukoners
  30. New Caledonia
    • A shout out to the intrepid and ubiquitous Scots of Canada that we have New Caledonia on the west coast and Nova Scotia on the east coast, and Mackenzie in the north.
  31. Okanagan
  32. Vancouvarea