The Centre for Research on French Canadian Culture (Centre de recherche en civilisation canadienne-française or CRCCF) of the University of Ottawa was founded in 1958 and offers a range of specialized services to the university, faculty and students, as well as the public at large.

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An abundance of research material (textual documents, photographs, audio and video tapes, newspapers and periodicals) on French Canada is available at the Centre’s archives. This documentation, from Québec, Ontario, Acadia and the Western provinces, as well as parts of the United States, is open for on site public consultation; there is also a reference library.

One of the Centre’s main objectives is the promotion of research on all aspects of French Canadian culture. From its initial focus on literature, the Centre’s orientation and activities have gradually broadened to include all the humanities and social sciences: history, sociology, economics, translation, political science, women’s studies, communication, music, education, linguistics, visual arts, etc.

A number of specialized, quality publications on French Canada are produced by the Centre. Among these works, published by various editors, there are essays, critical editions, biographies, textbooks, symposia proceedings and finding aids.

The Centre’s achievements have given it an international reputation. Many researchers from throughout the world have approached the Centre to obtain information and to solicit its collaboration. The Centre maintains regular contacts with other research groups and cultural associations that share the same goals.

Archives are truly the collective memory of a society. The Centre for Research on French Canadian Culture holds more than 1.8 linear kilometres of documents, of which an important part is related to Franco-Ontarians. Most of the major Franco-Ontarian associations entrust their archives to the Centre, as well as a growing number of individuals who are aware of the value of personal documents for our collective heritage.

The many individuals and organizations who donate their archives to the Centre contribute to the conservation and the development of our heritage and at the same time they may obtain certain benefits, such as:

  • controlled environmental and security conditions for the conservation of their archives;
  • the arrangement and description of their documents by professional archivists;
  • the circulation, among university researchers and the public, of the information contained in their documents (donors have access to their archives at any time, during opening hours, as well as evenings and weekends on request).

The Centre has become a major meeting place for research on French Canada: it welcomes more than 1,000 researchers and visitors every year. The Centre’s staff is pleased to assist them consult the documents they need, whether to complete a thesis, write a family history; or prepare a topic for radio or television; the only restrictions are those imposed by the donors. Various reference books and finding aids, such as summary lists and inventories of documents, photograph and tape files, etc., are also available.


In order to encourage research on French Canadian culture by scholars from all the humanities and social sciences, the Centre houses research projects headed by University of Ottawa faculty, financed by outside sources. It supplies these projects with administrative facilities, such as office space, documentation and secretarial services, or other assistance within its means.

On-going or recent projects

This project gives access on line to more than 2 400 web pages testifying of the rich history of the French community in Ontario. Many texts provide information about the historical background supplemented by beautiful photographs and archival documents.

The objective of this project is to publish two volumes on Lower Canada’s history at the beginning of the nineteenth century.  The project is headed by the Centre’s director, Jean-Pierre Wallot.

Under the direction of Lucie Hotte, professor at the Département des lettres françaises of the University of Ottawa, BIBLIFO aims to produce a bibliography on Franco-Ontarian literature. The database of BIBLIFO is available on the Centre’s web site.

The text of the DAF, an important reference tool on the Franco-Canadian diaspora in North America, is computerized and since its publication in 1982, additional information has been added.

The first volume of this critical edition of the poetic work of F.-X. Garneau is in preparation.  The project is headed by Yolande Grisé and Paul Wyczynski.

The objective of this project is to produce a complete list of the school manuals used to teach Francophone students in Ontario, from 1850 to the present.

To keep the public informed of its work, the Centre has created the following series of publications:

The Centre is involved in the publication of this multidisciplinary journal which aims to reflect the cultural diversity of the Francophone communities in North America by presenting articles on various subjects as well as report on the activities of research centres on French Canadian studies.  To subscribe, please contact us.

Since May 2001, this periodical, directed by Shawn Huffman from the D épartement d'études littéraires of Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) is produced by the Société québécoise d’études théâtrales (SQET) in partnership with the Centre.

Published by Fides of Montreal, this series of reference books is at once a source of literary and historical information, and an instrument of critical investigation.

This newsletter is produced by the Centre four times a year to inform its members on the Centre’s activities.

Among the finding aids produced to date by the Centre, the third edition of the Guide des archives du CFCCF de l’Université d’Ottawa, no. 36 of the series, is helpful to researchers consulting the Centre’s archives.