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Vol. III - n°2 | 2005
Views of Canadian Cultures

Visions des cultures canadiennes
Sous la direction de Matthias Merkl

When a German thinks of Canada, his or her image of this country is strongly determined by hetero-stereotypes. A survey which I conducted at the University of Würzburg in 2004 shows that German students of English know very little about Canadian literature, about Canadian geography and about Canadian society. What they do know best are preconceived images which reveal a Eurocentric view of the country. Among the few features of this image the most prominent are ‘the noble savage,’ ‘the lumberjack,’ ‘the mountie,’ ‘the sheer endless woods,’ ‘the moose,’ and ‘the beaver’. This romanticized image corresponds to a large extent to the image of Canada presented in 18th-century and 19th-century travel and exploration literature as well as in modern tourist brochures and travel guides which try to provide the traveller with a survival knowledge based on facts, figures and photographs…

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