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Historical Case Studies
Four cases in which the legal issue was “race” — that of a Chinese restaurant owner who was fined for employing a white woman; a black man who was refused service in a bar; a Jew who wanted to buy a cottage but was prevented by the property owners’ association; and a Trinidadian of East Indian descent who was acceptable to the Canadian army but was rejected for immigration on grounds of “race” — drawn from the period between 1914 and 1955, are intimately examined to explore the role of the Supreme Court of Canada and the law in the racialization of Canadian society. With painstaking research into contemporary attitudes and practices, Walker demonstrates that Supreme Court Justices were expressing the prevailing “common sense” about “race” in their legal decisions. He shows that injustice on the grounds of “race” has been chronic in Canadian history, and that the law itself was once instrumental in creating these circumstances. The book concludes with a controversial discussion of current directions in Canadian law and their potential impact on Canada’s future as a multicultural society.
Canadian Literature and Criticism after Modernism
It would be difficult to exaggerate the worldwide impact of postmodernism on the fields of cultural production and the social sciences over the last quarter century—even if the concept has been understood in various, even contradictory, ways. An interest in postmodernism and postmodernity has been especially strong in Canada, in part thanks to the country’s non-monolithic approach to history and its multicultural understanding of nationalism, which seems to align with the decentralized, plural, and open-ended pursuit of truth as a multiple possibility as outlined by Jean-François Lyotard. In fact, long before Lyotard published his influential work The Postmodern Condition in 1979, Canadian writers and critics were employing the term to describe a new kind of writing. RE: Reading the Postmodern marks a first cautious step toward a history of Canadian postmodernism, exploring the development of the idea of the postmodern and debates about its meaning and its applicability to various genres of Canadian writing, and charting its decline in recent years as a favoured critical trope.
China, Europe, and Japan
Key royal courts - in Han, Tang, and Song dynasty China; medieval and renaissance Europe; and Heian and Muromach Japan--are examined in this comparative and interdisciplinary volume as loci of power and as entities that establish, influence, or counter the norms of a larger society. Contributions by twelve scholars are organized into sections on the rhetoric of persuasion, taste, communication, gender, and natural nobility.
A Mingling of Contrarieties
Aimer la vie, conjurer la mort
Quatre siècles de soins infirmiers canadiens
Diasporic Literature in English Canada
Scandalous Bodies is an impassioned scholarly study both of literature by diasporic writers and of the contexts within which it is produced. It explores topics ranging from the Canadian government’s multiculturalism policy to media representations of so-called minority groups, from the relationship between realist fiction and history to postmodern constructions of ethnicity, from the multicultural theory of the philosopher Charles Taylor to the cultural responsibilities of diasporic critics such as Kamboureli herself.
Smaro Kamboureli proposes no neat or comforting solutions to the problems she addresses. Rather than adhere to a single method of reading or make her argument follow a systematic approach, she lets the texts and the socio-cultural contexts she examines give shape to her reading. In fact, methodological issues, and the need to revisit them, become a leitmotif in the book. Theoretically rigorous and historically situated, this study also engages with close readingnot the kind that views a text as a sovereign world, but one that opens the text in order to reveal the method of its making. Her practice of what she calls negative pedagogya self-reflexive method of learning and unlearning, of decoding the means through which knowledge is producedallows her to avoid the pitfalls of constructing a narrative of progress. Her critique of Canadian multiculturalism as a policy that advocates what she calls “sedative politics” and of the epistemologies of ethnicity that have shaped, for example, the first wave of ethnic anthologies in Canada are the backdrop against which she examines the various discourses that inform the diasporic experience in Canada.
Scandalous Bodies was first published in 2000 and received the Gabrielle Roy Prize for Canadian Criticism.
The Diaries of Mary Armstrong, 1859 and 1869
Offers an intriguing glimpse into the daily life of an average Toronto woman in the mid-nineteenth century.
Mary Armstrong’s diaries are a window into the daily life of a middle-class woman in a new and changing land, and a revealing account of life in early Toronto just before and after confederation. Her journals are one of very few published by Canadian women, especially women outside the upper classes, in the decades surrounding the mid-nineteenth century.
Mary Armstrong was the wife of a butcher / farmer who lived in what is now the Yorkville and Deer Park area of Toronto from the 1830s to the 1880s. She had immigrated with her parents and siblings from England in 1834. Her diaries, which cover five months in 1859 and eight months in 1869, reflect her multiplicity of interests and concerns including family, women’s work, faith, status and class, occupation and trade, community networks, and local and national identity.
Jackson W. Armstrong’s introduction examines who Mary was, what her world was like, and how she saw her own place in it; it also explains the origin and history of the diaries. His extensive primary research supports the well-annotated diaries, and gives contextual information on the events, people, and places that Mary mentions.
Seven Eggs Today offers new information and a new perspective on mid-Victorian English Canada, and will be welcomed by general readers and scholars interested in colonial life, biography, immigrant experiences, family or local history, or women’s studies.
The Story of Lake Superior
In Shining Big Sea Water, historian Norman K. Risjord offers a grand tour of Lake Superior's remarkable history, taking readers through the centuries and into the lives of those who have traveled the lake and inhabited its shores.Through lively, informative chapters, Risjord begins with the lake's cataclysmic geological birth, then explores the lives of native peoples along the shore before European contact and during the fur trade, showing how Superior functioned as a "blue-water highway" for Indians, early explorers, industries, and settlers. He outlines the development of such cities as Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan; Ashland, Wisconsin; and Two Harbors, Minnesota, and tells the fascinating histories of life-saving lighthouses and famous shipwrecks. In the final chapter, Risjord looks to the future, offering a clear-eyed account of the environmental and economic challenges faced by America's largest freshwater lake.Interspersed throughout the book are handy tips for travelers, highlighting historically significant sites that illustrate key pieces of Lake Superior's natural and human history, including national lakeshores in the United States and provincial parks in Canada.
Petite ethnographie interprétative d'un certain Canada français
Ce tableau d’avancement examine le Canada français de la dernière moitié du XXe siècle et propose quelques repères utiles, souligne certains enlisements, avancées et retards, et cherche à comprendre son évolution malaisée à travers trois grandes perspectives : celle de chefs politiques qui l’ont orienté, celle d’intellectuels influents qui l’ont interprété, et celle de certaines institutions qui en ont révélé la dynamique. Le fil rouge qui lie ces vignettes et sert de fil conducteur est l’ombre de la Révolution tranquille qui a brouillé la vue de bien des observateurs. L’auteur est d’accord avec Gilles Vigneault quand il dit « Nous avons mal regardé. Nous avons mal écouté ». Il propose ici une autre manière de voir, une autre forme d’écoute.