Part of the Studies on the History of Quebec/Etudes d'Histoire du Quebec Series
Studies of young activists have tended to focus on the period of the 1960s. Neatby shows us that the youth of the sixties were not the only ones to distinguish themselves by their social activism and idealism - students of the Duplessis era were equally conscientious and idealistic about wanting reform and felt a strong sense of social responsibility towards the world at large. On the Quebec scene they openly criticized religious authorities and increasingly saw themselves as agents of reform in educational matters. Their activism led them to take strike action and to organize a sit-in. Neatby shows that students, like so many other social groups in the Quebec of the 1950s, were far from quiescent during the so-called Grande noirceur. The attitudes of these activists provide a background for understanding student demands today, such as educational reform, free access to universities, and the abolition of student fees.