What Canadians Think | Darrell Bricker & John Wright

Ipsos-Reid is synonymous with Canadian statistics. In What Canadians Think, Bricker and Wright from Ipsos-Reid draw from the statistics they have collected to paint a clear and light-hearted picture of what makes Canadians Canadian.

Bricker and Wright fill the book with curious stats on all aspects of life. Have you ever wondered what the most popular after-school activity is? Piano and Swimming lessons are tied at 16% each with Soccer a close second at 15%. What about the odds by which a Canadian woman is more likely than a man to be on a diet—2.5 to 1. What percentage of Canadians know the first line of our nation anthem? Brace yourself—only 37%!

One of the more interesting things this book illustrates is how different Quebec is. On stat after stat, Quebec’s numbers were radically different from the rest of Canada. (British Columbia was the second most out-of-step province.)

The biggest problem with a book like this is its date. It was published in 2005, which makes the data over 8 years old. Part of the fun I had while reading was trying to guess where our country had moved in the years that followed this book’s printing. When it came to topics like the Internet, the lack of relevance was comical.

If knowing thyself is the key to collective enlightenment, then Bricker and Wright are leading the way there.

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