Duceppe, Gilles (zhēl düsĕpˈ) [key], 1947–, French-Canadian separatist politician, b. Montreal. A union negotiator from 1977 to 1990 and a Quebec separtatist from 1967, Duceppe was a founding member of the Parti Québécois and in 1990 was elected its first member to be elected to the Canadian parliament. He served as party whip (1993–97) for the Bloc Québécois in Ottawa and became its parliamentary leader in 1997, advocating "sovereignty-association," in which an independent Quebec would exist in a European Union–like political and economic association with the rest of Canada. After the Bloc lost nearly all it seats (and he lost his seat) in 2011, he resigned as its leader.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.