Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Quebec general election, 1960
The Quebec general election of 1960 was held on June 22, 1960 to elect members of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Quebec, Canada. It was one of the most significant elections in Quebec history, rivaled perhaps only by the 1976 general election. The incumbent Union Nationale, led by Antonio Barrette, was defeated by the Quebec Liberal Party, led by Jean Lesage.
The 1960 election set the stage for the Quiet Revolution, a major social transformation of all aspects of Quebec society throughout the 1960s. Among many other changes, the influence and power of the Catholic church fell sharply as Quebec became a secular society.
His successor, Paul Sauvé, initiated a stunning "hundred days of change" that began to transform Quebec society after decades of stagnation under Duplessis. The Duplessis period was later derisively referred to as La Grande Noirceur (the Great Darkness). Sauvé died suddenly after only a few months in office. The Union Nationale was thus in disarray when it went into an election under its leader (Barrette) in less than a year.
While most of the credit for the Quiet Revolution is normally given to Lesage's Liberals, the work started by Paul Sauvé played an important role in changing the face of Quebec.
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