Abject Futures: The (re)Negotiation of NAFTA and the Canadian Power Elite

Dean Ray


This paper draws upon the critical political economy tradition in Canada to examine the renegotiation of NAFTA and the class interests at work in the final agreement. It draws on a range of ethnographic and media sources in its argumentation. The paper provides a comprehensive review of Canadian Political Economy before it turns to the negotiation and the actions of Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland. It is argued that Freeland was adept at appearance management and manipulating media presentations of herself to make the negotiation seem more laboured then it was. In the end, the agreement protected Canada's crown jewel, the commercial banking sector, the source of wealth for Canada's Power Elite. This all happened without much discussion of its uniqueness or its important to wealth and power in Canada. Given this, what then are we to do to resist? The final section builds a case for imaging abject futures as a mode of resistance to what might be termed Canada's Power Elite.


Psychoanalysis, Abject, Social Theory, Power Elite, NAFTA, Trudeau, Future

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.32855/fcapital.201901.005


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