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Richard, Chantal, Anne Brown, Margaret Conrad, Gwendolyn Davies, Bonnie Huskins, Sylvia Kasparian. “Markers of Collective Identity in Loyalist and Acadian Speeches of the 1880s: A Comparative Analysis.” Journal of New Brunswick Studies 4 (Fall 2013), 13-30.


This article presents the results of a research project comparing the speeches and sermons of Acadians and descendants of the Saint John Loyalists in the 1880s. At this pivotal moment in New Brunswick history, Loyalist descendants were celebrating a century of survival and progress while Acadians were regrouping after a century of silence. Each group sought to assert its place in a rapidly evolving society. Since neither group could claim for itself a specific geographic territory or a centralized government, a collective identity could be shaped only through the recognition of common values, a shared past, and a collective future. Using text analysis software programs Hyperbase and Sphinx, we explore the lexical worlds by which Loyalist descendants and Acadians expressed their collective identities, and we compare the specific traits and discursive strategies in each of these groups.

Journal of New Brunswick Studies