Friday, December 15, 2006

This and That

My first arts column will be a discussion of whether it is better to have many centres of art, art-making going on in every little corner, or whether it is better to have one dominant centre, such as New York City or Toronto. New Brunswick has at least three centres and no one dominant centre. Nova Scotia and Newfoundland each have one dominant centre, Halifax and St. John’s. Maine has several centres, no dominant one. In fact Maine is more fractured than we are, and yet it is a hotbed of artistic endeavor.

Microsoft Word seems to feel that centre is a correct spelling, but not centres. In The Opening Eye, one of the group activities is “centring.” I spelled it “centering”, the American way, but the publisher wanted it “centring.” Microsoft Word doesn’t like “centring” either. The man who edits our church newsletter wants us to use British punctuation, but the publisher of The Opening Eye used American punctuation. In Canada, things are all mixed up.

1 comment:

Poor Mad Peter said...

Of course! To be English Canadian is to be in a stasis between two opposing historical gravities: British and American. We're both and neither.