Honorary Degrees

N.B.: The detail displayed about each honorary degree recipient varies, as the database was compiled from a variety of sources. However, more information may be available at the University Archives.

Name: Prof. Paul-André Crépeau
Convocation date: October 25, 2008
Discipline / contribution: law ; legal education
Citation / biographical information:

Paul- André Crépeau was born in Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan on May 20th, 1926, and the Crépeau family was part of the early history and politics of Saskatchewan. However, following the sudden death of his father, a young Paul-André and his mother left Saskatchewan in 1943 and settled in Ottawa where Paul-Andre’s two sisters had joined the Civil Service and where he pursued his academic studies at the University of Ottawa.

Paul-André went on to an extraordinary career, training as a Rhodes Scholar in common law and comparative law at the University of Oxford and attaining a doctorate in classical civil law from the Université de Paris. He has six earned degrees from the University of Ottawa (1946, 1947), the Université de Montreal (1950), the University of Oxford (as a Rhodes Scholarship Recipient, 1952), the Université de Paris (1955) and the International Faculty of Comparative Law of Strasbourg (1959). Professor Crépeau has also received seven Honorary Doctorates from universities in Canada and Europe. Throughout his long and highly distinguished career, Professor Crépeau has always paid tribute to his formative years growing up in Saskatchewan.

Professor Crépeau is widely recognized in the university community in Canada as one of the founders of the academic tradition in the law and is generally hailed as the spiritual father of the Civil Code of Quebec and the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. His work in the law of obligations and Private International Law over nearly fifty years at McGill University has set the highest standard for teaching and scholarship in law in Canada. Writing prolifically in French and English, his many books and articles on the Civil Law are considered to have shaped the development of the law over the last generation. Professionally, his unflagging leadership in learned societies has been a strong theme throughout his career.

A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Dr. Crépeau was made a Companion of the Order of Canada in 1992. He is winner of Quebec’s highest honour for academic work in the humanities and the social sciences - Prix Léon-Gérin. In recognition of his contribution to internationalism and the law, the Canadian Bar Association created the “Paul-André Crépeau Medal in International Commercial Law” in 2001.

Professor Crépeau now makes his home in Quebec where he was intimately involved in the reform of the Civil Code of Quebec and is Director Emeritus of the Centre for Private and Comparative Law at McGill, which he founded in 1975.

Degree received: Doctor of Laws
Degree presented by: Brent Cotter, Dean of Law

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