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Mackenzie King and the Conscription Crisis

Mackenzie King and the Conscription Crisis

| 31 min

From the beginning of the Second World War in 1939, Mackenzie King tried to avoid conscription. Most English Canadians thought young men should be sent to fight, while most French Canadians vehemently disagreed. This same division had nearly torn the country apart during the First World War. King had to make a decision in the final year of the war. This docudrama combines archival footage with excerpts from The King Chronicles, a dramatic series written and directed by Donald Brittain.

Some scenes contain graphic language.

This film deals with mature subject matter. Viewer discretion is advised

  • director
    Erna Buffie
  • script
    Erna Buffie
  • producer
    Adam Symansky
    David Wilson
  • executive producer
    Colin Neale
  • editing
    David Wilson
    Denise Beaudoin
  • sound editing
    Les Halman
  • re-recording
    Jean-Pierre Joutel
    Shelley Craig
  • narrator
    Terre Nash
  • music
    Louis Babin
  • cast
    Sean McCann
    Damir Andrei
    Mark Brennan
    Jean Chevalier
    Jason Dean
    Yves Dubreuil
    John Friesen
    David Gardner
    Dean Hagopian
    Gordon Jocelyn


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Ages 14 to 17

Study Guide - Guide 1

Civics/Citizenship - Human Rights
History - World War II
History and Citizenship Education - Modernization of Quebec Society (1929-1980)
Social Studies - Canadian Politics and Government

Research conscription and explain what it entails during wartime. Explain the stance on conscription taken by the French Canadians in Quebec and by Prime Minister Mackenzie King. Identify the position taken by English Canadians. Discuss Canada’s role in the Allied victory in Sicily and the invasion of Normandy with its disastrous results for King. How does King eventually solve the conscription question?

Mackenzie King and the Conscription Crisis
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