M997.63.179 | The Old Bachelor

Drawing, cartoon
The Old Bachelor
Normand Hudon
About 1955, 20th century
Ink and opaque white
32.5 x 40 cm
Gift of Mme Arlette Hudon
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Cartoon (19139) , Drawing (18637) , drawing (18379) , Leaders (428) , male (1608) , Maurice Duplessis (21) , Political parties (800) , Politician (17) , Politicians (860) , portrait (61) , Premier (42) , Québec (427) , Union Nationale (90) , various themes (1105)
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Keys to History

In this parody of a French song, Québec Premier Maurice Duplessis's physique is described rather unflatteringly, and some of his characteristics -- ambition, bachelorhood and Catholic faith -- are recalled.

  • What

    The song's new words denounce the corruption of Duplessis's regime ("Millions spent to win elections") as well as his authoritarianism ("Keep quiet or you'll get it").

  • Where

    The phrase "Ungava to the Americans" deplores the fact that this region in northern Québec, with its rich iron ore deposits, was being developed by American companies while Duplessis's Union Nationale was in power.

  • When

    Hudon's new words were a parody of the Léo Ferré song Paris canaille, which dated from 1953.

  • Who

    In July 1959, Duplessis's political career was coming to an end. He died in office on September 7, 1959, while serving his fourth consecutive term as premier of Québec.