Pro-Family Politics and Fringe Parties in Canada
Pro-Family Politics and Fringe Parties in Canada exploresthe organizational and ideological nature of political parties that areinitially formed to do the work of social movements. Specifically, itexamines the development of the Family Coalition Party of BritishColumbia (FCP) from its origins as a group of alienated Social CreditParty members to its rebirth as the Unity Party of British Columbia,and through its struggles as a marginal political entity along theway.
While addressing the FCP's relationship to the larger NorthAmerican pro-family movement, Chris MacKenzie also deftly demonstrateshow the party can be seen as organizationally congruent with itsideological antithesis, the Green Party. Basing his findings on sevenyears of field research, he identifies the obstacles that politicalparties involved in social movement work must overcome in order forthem to achieve their goals. He concludes that, despite theirinvaluablecontribution to democracy, such party / movements havelimited political institutionalization. Consequently, their onlyrealistic goal may be to merge their ideals with those of another,larger political body.
This book makes a substantial contribution to our understanding ofthe genesis, development, and impact of political party / movements inCanada. Moreover, it provides useful insight into the dynamics andissues that make up the current pro-family movements in Canada and theUnited States.
In offering a thorough, thoughtful, respectful, examination of a movement that is clearly on the far periphery of the Canadian political landscape, MacKenzie adds a useful new piece to our understanding. His book is important for anyone interested in understanding the complex history of party politics in Canada … Pro-Family Politics is an interesting analysis of the relationship between structure and ideology and the impact of the two on electoral success. It makes a unique contribution to the field by treating seriously the role of an extremely minor party that has fallen far below the radar of most academics working in the field.
1 The Family Coalition Party of British Columbia: A Party ofLast Resort
2 The Pro-Family Movement: Conservative Roots, New RightEconomics, and Religious Ideals
3 The Burden of Form: The Family Coalition Party as aMovement
4 The Function of Form: Family Coalition as a PoliticalParty
5 The Tensions of Form: Family Coalition as aParty/Movement
Appendix: Note on Methodology
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