Accommodements Raisonnables

s’il vous plaît, faites vos commentaires sur le film Liberté, Egalité, Accommodements et la discussion avec le réalisateur Stefan Nitoslawski ci-dessous

Please write your reflections on the film Liberty, Equality, Accommodation and the discussion with the director Stefan Nitoslawski that followed below.

The Film’s Facebook Page: Please write your reflections on the film here too/s’il vous plaît, faites vos commentaires sur le film ici aussi

Photo Credit Ms. Afra Tucker

8 Responses to Accommodements Raisonnables

  1. Frank Sanna says:

    I’m also a bit surprised that there has been so few screenings / broadcasts of such a well made and engaging film. I was pleasantly surprised to find out about the intelligence and openness that was an integral part of this process of ‘hearings’. That indeed, the simple expression of human voices and their respectful reception goes a long way in providing solace within the chaos of modern culture. Now that I think about it, it is not surprising that mainstream media are not interested in anything ‘raisonable’ but rather can only see the extreme and superficial aspects of complex issues. For me this is THE problem of our times. That we have no longer any valid means (or desire perhaps) to deal with the complexity, say paradox, of human existence. Through the diversity of questions it proposes, I think this film underlines the dilemma of secularism as a “solution”. It reminds that philosophical questioning seems to have no place in our society, that it’s not good for business, but that it is still an essential and unavoidable address.

  2. Irene says:

    M. Nitoslawski a réussi à faire ressortir, de façon excellente et impartiale, les moments types de la Commission. Ces moments oscillent entre des discours extrémistes et d’autres, plus modérés de la population.
    Concernant le sujet des “accommodements raisonnables”, cette expression utilisée par la Commission est en elle-même problématique. Je crois qu’il faut aller plus loin que la simple “accommodation”, comme si les groupes ne devaient se définir que l’un “contre” l’Autre en apprenant à “se tolérer” les uns les autres. L’heure est plutôt venue d’apprendre à vivre l’un “avec” l’autre dans un processus évolutif dans le temps, de cocréation de l’identité.
    La tâche ne sera pas facile, en raison dela présente hétérogénéité des groupes et de l’histoire religieuse et sociale du Québec. Mais ne nous y trompons pas. Ce n’est pas parce que le Québec a ses particularités historiques que le problème de la différence des valeurs entre les groupes ne se pose pas ailleurs au Canada et en Occident.
    Il faut donc passer du “problème” à “l’opportunité” de créer une société meilleure, profitant de la richesse des échanges entre les groupes. Car contrairement à ce qu’on pourrait penser, ce n’est pas en se méfiant les uns des autres que l’on va réussir à combattre l’intégrisme (athée ou religieux) et qui peut constituer un vrai danger. À force de crier “au loup”, on ne le verra pas lorsqu’il s’approchera véritablement de nous…

  3. David Millar says:

    Our evening with Gérard Bouchard was enlightening, and (for me) suprising. He not only explained, but modeled in his very comportment, the work of the Commission. In so doing, he answered some key questions posed by Stefan Nitoslawski’s film. I was fascinated by the process he used. The film was a shock of icebergs, of passions, much of the “vécu” which gave rise to them remaining below the surface. M. Bouchard respected each person’s lived experience, using his sociological skills to examine its representativity in our society, to highlight its most positive elements, and invite us all into dialogue — open-ended, marked by a search not for “compromise” or “accommodation” per se, but for genuine creativity. This is not an end in itself. It is a beginning, a calling. I think we all surprised ourselves, as we were surprised.
    En français — le comportement de Gérard Bouchard nous a montré dans le vif le processus de sa Commission: son respect profond du vécu de chaque intervenant, la recherche de sa representativité et de ses éléments-cle les plus positifs, son ouverture au dialogue profonde, et finalement son appel, moins au compromis qu’à la créativité — nous appelant à la poursuite d’un bonheur, un bien-vivre commun. Bravo à tous qui ont posé les questions, qui ont pris la risque de s’ouvrir!

  4. Thank you Professor Cornett for the opportunity to show and discuss the documentary Liberty, Equality, Accommodation. It was an enriching experience and a wonderful occasion for exchange.

    I echo the comments of Professor Millar. The film still awakes in me tension when hearing the divergent points of view and seeing the emotions they provoke. These increadibly passionate convictions expressed about the need for reasonable accommodation motivated me to make the film

    Dialogue is essential in a healthy community. For it to be fruitful, it must contain two components. First, it needs to be frank and heartfelt. People must have the freedom to express how they see a given situation and what they understand from it. Second, it is essential that the opposing side listen and try to comprehend the opposing view.

    Of course there is no ideal and in any society. We will have a cross-section of people that will be able to fulfill the above conditions to various degrees. The Bouchard-Taylor Commission proved that Quebec society is able to have a healthy dialoged and, for those who wholeheartedly participated, benefit from the exchange.

    For me one of the core questions that is still in my mind unresolved, is what does the dialogue ultimately lead to. Do we grow into a society in which there is concensus and unity as to our institutions and our identity. Or will rather, will we remain distinct groups, communities that function in their own realm, overlapping to a greater or lesser degree with their neighbors. In this sense a consensus would not be attained but rather we would balance between the needs of one with those of the other.

    Maybe the reality lies somewhere in between, but it would seem to me that in either situation, dialogue is the key to foster understanding.

  5. Albion says:

    Some thoughts/Questions before meeting Gerard Bouchard (rough)


    Oscar Wilde said, “A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not worth even glancing at, for it leaves out the one country at which Humanity is always landing.” (The Soul of Man Under Socialism). Are we suffering yet another failure of the imagination if we think that a secular society is the solution? As Noam Chomsky says that “it’s another form of religion, a state religion”, not a religion in the traditional sense, but which can be used as a tool to form an aggressive foreign policy.
    How do we infuse secular culture with the beauty that religion has given us such as the best thing the Anglican Church even had, The King James Bible.
    What do we place our cathedrals and icons with in a secular world? Art Galleries, novels?


    No; truth, being alive, was not halfway between anything. It was only to be found by continuous excursions into either realm, and though proportion is the final secret, to espouse it at the outset is to insure sterility.”– E. M. Forster , Howard’s End (1910), Chapter 23. Calls for unity, tolerance and respect could stifle the debate that needs be happening; they could also be perceived as being offensive terms. If someone said to me, I tolerate you, I would find that an extremely offensive remark. In fact I would think, who the hell asked you, thanks very much.
    As Paulo Friere says, when the debate fails to be culturally informed or democratically critical it can become simply a “middle-class narcissism.”

    Individualism vs. collectivism

    Shakespear and Kant articulate their thoughts on individual human dignity. Shakespeare wrote in the play Hamlet “What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form and moving how express and admirable! In action how like an Angel! in apprehension how like a god!”
    Others would argue, Marx for example, that the individual is dead. And perhaps, collectivism is needed, especially when dealing with issues on a global scale such as the environment.
    How do you come to terms with the contradiction, the confliction of the seeming need for both individualism and collectivism?

    The role of government?

    What do you hold the role of government to be? And to what ends should it interfere with our lives further than, and the declaration of independence of the United States says “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
    There’s a failure of the electoral system to provide debate and a dialectic of far reaching opinion as it forces parties to scampering for the middle ground. There is also a simplistic projection of political opinions on to a 1 dimensional left-right axis, with the ridiculously suffocating view that Liberals become apologist for fundamentalism, conservatives being bigoted and racist against other religion.

  6. Nancy Ménard says:

    Premièrement, félicitations à M. Stefan Nitoslawski pour la qualité du documentaire qu’il nous a offert. Je suis encore sous le choc d’avoir appris qu’il n’a été diffusé qu’une seule fois à Québec et qu’une seule fois à Montréal. Ce documentaire mériterait amplement d’être diffusé sur nos réseaux de télévision, à commencer par Radio-Canada. Ce qui ressort le plus pour moi, après avoir visionné le documentaire, est la beauté des échanges d’opinions entre les membres d’une même collectivité. De plus, ce que je retiens et ce que je pense est qu’on doit chercher à comprendre les autres (pourquoi est-ce qu’ils portent un voile ou le kirpan, etc..), dialoguer avec les autres avant de porter des jugements ou d’exiger qu’ils changent leur identité culturelle. Ce film met en évidence, et ce, de belle façon, que oui, il est possible de s’exprimer ouvertement au Québec (quel privilège)!

    Aussi, j’ai beaucoup d’admiration pour les commissaires qui n’ont pas eu la tâche facile: écoutez heure après heure les opinions et frustrations de leurs concitoyens (ont-ils parfois eu envie de lancer la serviette et d’abandonner?). Ils ont fait preuve de sagesse, d’ouverture d’esprit et de respect, quels modèles… je suis fière d’être Québecoise!! Quelle expérience enrichissante ces commissaires ont dû vivre, ils ont eu le privilège de prendre le poul des gens issus de différents milieux sociaux et culturels. C’est ça une démocratie… prendre des décisions en tendant l’oreille à ce peuple qui a son mot à dire!!

  7. David Millar says:

    I was greatly moved by the film, swayed by the passionate sincerity and (often) passionate disagreements on all sides. It was like a clash of icebergs, to show everything was impossible, but we clearly felt the depths of lived experience under the surface. It was an encounter with a vast and many-faceted reality, to which Québecois — themselves a cultural minority — are exceptionally sensitive. Congrats to Stefan Nitoslawski and NFB for blazing a trail to greater understanding and dialogue. A trail that needs further work. If only the rest of Canada would wake up to the need!

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