The souls of Canadian folk: how the wilderness makes us who we are

This is a follow-up to a previous post called “Wilderness and Canadian identity.”

What that post found in our national and provincial parks, this one will explore at a psychical level. If our identities are tied to a particular conception of wilderness, what are the symptoms of this condition? How does the Canadian psyche operate under the influence of this concept?

Diagnosis, Symptoms, and Moving On […]

Wilderness and Canadian identity

The Canadian ideology of wilderness is two-sided. On the one hand, the untouched nature, represented more or less abstractly, is Canadians’ spiritual soil, our true north strong and free, our strength, our virtue, our potential as a nation, etc. At the same time, the actual wilderness is a testing ground for our lumberjack virility. The wilderness is a gym, and the land itself makes us strong.

Hidden between the two poles is a strange Indigenous presence that is everywhere and nowhere on this ideal terrain: our wilderness recreational activity emulates and embodies what our symbolic adoption of the land as “untouched nature” erases. […]

Escher Batman

Here is the process: I found the points of symmetry in Escher’s Lizard (No. 124), which has interesting rotational and reflectional symmetry. After a first failure, I discovered the importance of adding the lopsided grid formed by joining heads and tails – it keeps black and white “squares” from touching too much and presents lines that […]