Canadian Studies in the Czech Republic and Central Europe
A Personal History
This article surveys the development of Canadian Studies in Czechoslovakia/the Czech Republic from 1985 (the year the first such course was offered at a Czech university) down to the present. It also deals with the wider context of the development of Canadian Studies in Central Europe under the aegis of the Central European Association for Canadian Studies, established in 2003 with its Secretariat located at Masaryk University, Brno. In both the Czech Republic and the wider region, the late 1990s saw a steady growth in Canadian Studies, fostered by financial support from the Canadian government and outreach activities by Western European Canadian Studies associations. The first decade of the twenty-first century saw an explosion of activities - many new courses and degree programmes, conferences and specialized seminars, international projects, publications, the launching of the Central European Journal for Canadian Studies. The century’s second decade, however, has witnessed retrenchment, the result of systemic changes in higher education systems and the Canadian government’s cancellation of all support for Canadian Studies activities in 2012. Nevertheless, in both the Czech Republic and Central Europe, Canadian Studies continues to enjoy a significant and respected presence in the higher education sphere.
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