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  Educators Course Syllabi History, Athabasca- Canada and the Bomb

Canada and the Bomb: Canada and the World in the Cold War
History 455
Athabasca University, Canada

Delivery mode: Home study
Credits: 3 - Humanities
Prerequisite: None. HIST 225 is strongly recommended.

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HIST 455 examines Canada's response to the unleashing of the atom's destructive power and the intense divisions between the two superpowers with the greatest control over that power. Among issues discussed are the range of official and private citizen attitudes to nuclear and conventional warfare, the Canadian armaments industry, Canada's role in the Vietnam war, and Canadian participation in NATO and NORAD. Throughout the course, a key concern is the relationship of Canadian attitudes to nuclear and foreign-policy issues on the one hand, and Canadian views of the values informing our own society, on the other.


  • Unit 1: Welcome to the Nuclear Age: Canada 1945 to 1960
  • Unit 2: Canada and Nuclear Weapons: From Diefenbaker to Trudeau
  • Unit 3: Canada and the War in Indochina
  • Unit 4: Peacekeeping and Peace Movements: Perspectives on Past and Future Roles of Canada in the World


To receive credit for HIST 455, students must achieve a course composite grade of at least 50 per cent and a grade of at least 50 per cent on the final examination. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assignment 1    20%
Assignment 2    40%
Final Exam    40%
Total    100%


  • Eayrs, James. 1980. In Defence of Canada. Volume 5: Growing Up Allied. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
  • Granatstein, J. L., ed. 1986. Canadian Foreign Policy: Historical Readings. Toronto: Copp Clark Pitman.
  • Levant, Victor. 1986. Quiet Complicity: Canadian Involvement in the Vietnam War. Toronto: Between the Lines.
  • Martin, Paul. 1975. A Very Public Life. Volume 2: So Many Worlds. Toronto: Deneau.
  • Regehr, Ernie, and Simon Rosenblum, eds. 1983. Canada and the Nuclear Arms Race. Toronto: Lorimer.

Note: This course syllabus was last updated October 1997.