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July-August 2017

Inside the battle for bilingual education in Nunavut schools

A new bill could help the territory reach its goal to establish a bilingual education system

Allyson Aritcheta@ariCheddar

This year, Canada celebrates its 150th birthday. Ours is a country of rich history—but not all Canadian stories are told equally. In this special report, This tackles 13 issues—one per province and territory—that have yet to be addressed and resolved by our country in a century and a half Although the last residential school in Canada closed in […] More »
January-February 2017

Exploring bilingualism and English-speaking privilege at a Montreal movie theatre

What columnist andrea bennett learned from watching a Xavier Dolan film as a native English speaker—and what Anglophones take for granted

andrea bennett@akkabah

Still from C’est juste la fin du monde, via YouTube. One Sunday last November, my friend Megan and I met at a French-language movie theatre in Rosemont–La Petite Patrie in Montreal. I stood in line for matinee tickets, and then Megan and I bought popcorn. I ordered maïs soufflé, un regulier; the worker at the counter […] More »

Friday FTW: The sentinels of genocide

Kate Hefford

When the Holocaust ended almost 70 years ago, and we said it would never happen again. Yet, there have been six genocides since then. The systematic murders in Darfur are ongoing, and the country’s government won’t address them. Many groups have been founded to tackle genocide in the past 15 years—such as United to End […] More »

Friday FTW: Special Olympian stands up to Ann Coulter

Sara Harowitz

“Every day I get closer to living a life like yours.” It was 2008 when John Franklin Stephens, who has Down syndrome, wrote those words, but their importance has not diminished in the four years that have passed. A Special Olympics athlete and global messenger, Stephens recently had to once again defend his humanity—and, it […] More »
July-August 2010

Harper’s parliamentary reforms could solve some problems—and cause others

Bruce M. Hicks

The Harper government has placed a bill before Parliament that would alter the formula for how seats are redistributed following the census. It would give Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia more seats in the House of Commons; naturally, Quebec and the Atlantic Canadian provinces are upset with this change as it diminishes their relative influence […] More »
January-February 2010

“I think I might be a little bit racist. And I’d like to change.”

Lisan Jutras

When one writer found herself sinking into a mire of prejudice and resentment, she set out to find a cure. But maybe 12 steps aren’t enough. The first step to getting help, they say, is admitting you have a problem. That part took me years of halting, painful introspection and self-doubt. Later, I told friends—just […] More »
November-December 2009

Strengthen democracy and fight bigotry head-on — Legalize Hate Speech

Laura KusistoWebsite

The fight for free speech is not the work of angels. Academics love Evelyn Hall’s famous saying, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” In the age of promiscuous online speech, the sentiment of two university protestors seems more apt: “Free speech for all. […] More »
September-October 2009

Canada’s an urban nation. Why is our literature still down on the farm?

Darryl WhetterWebsite

CanLit has the literary equivalent of the Y2K bug—it can’t flip over into this century When he delivers public lectures, editor and writer John Metcalf is fond of illustrating CanLit’s paradoxical obsession with tales of the rural past by describing the query letter he once received from a then-unheard-of Russell Smith. Metcalf claims that Smith […] More »
July-August 2008

“Socialism” and “Big Government” as Orwellian doublespeak

Ellen Russell

It’s not the size of your bureaucracy. It’s how you use it. Onward, Stephen Harper: lead us to the socialist utopia! If you follow the right-wing punditry you’d think comrades Harper, Obama, Brown, and the like are leading us along that slippery slope to—gasp—socialism. Not that any of these leaders has a nice word to […] More »
November-December 2008

Quebec’s “hip hop historian” raps about Québécois black heritage

Sandra Jackson Opoku

Quebec city’s recent 400th anniversary celebration was quite a spectacle — Paul McCartney, Celine Dion, treasures from the Louvre, and even the occasional nod to diversity like the multicultural rap show, Hip hop tout en couleurs (Hip hop in all Colours). For the most part, though, the Quebec black experience went unacknowledged. For “Webster” Aly […] More »
July-August 2009

Review: Nicole Brossard’s latest novel throbs with linguistic menace

Terese SaplysWebsite

Quebec writer Nicole Brossard’s latest novel, Fences in Breathing (translated by Susanne de Lotbinière-Harwood), confronts a subject favoured by a cadre of contemporary literary darlings, Roberto Bolaño, David Foster Wallace, and John Wray among them: namely, a profound distrust in the magic of fiction. A woman of letters herself, Brossard’s Québécoise protagonist, Anne, labours to […] More »