Literally, “masters in our own home,” it was the rallying cry of Jean Lesage’s Quebec Liberals in their breakthrough 1960 election and in the heady days of activism that ushered in the Quiet Revolution in the early 60s.
“Maîtres Chez Nous” was specifically aimed at rallying Quebeckers behind the nationalization and consolidation of the province’s electrical utilities to create Hydro Quebec – a monolithic super-utility to harness the province’s hydro-electric potential into a vehicle for massive, province-wide economic growth. The intended contrast was with the long history of Francophone subservience to traditionally English-speaking (both English Canadian and American) economic masters.
So successful was “Maîtres Chez Nous” that it became a catch phrase not just for the Lesage Liberals but for a broad swath of Quebec nationalists, including in the nascent Quebec separatist movement.
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