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CESA Conference Abstracts

September 2007

 

Christopher Adam, “Cold War Politics and the Hungarian-Canadian Press, 1956-1989”. Department of History, University of Ottawa.

 

The émigré press, and newspapers more generally, serve as a vehicle through which society negotiates both its past and present. Editorials and the selection of articles express the way in which the given paper wishes to be perceived by its readership, while letters to the editor are often representative of the ideas, views and beliefs present in a specific community. In the case of Hungarians in Canada, the sheer number of publications printed after the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and the arrival to Canada of 38,000 refugees, as well as the diversity of their political and ideological inclinations, means that these Hungarian ethnic papers provide the best glimpse into both the changes in public opinion over the years, and the way in which Hungarian community leaders attempted to infuse the immigration with specific ideological messages and political debates based on the realities of the Cold War.

 

Ethnic newspapers serve as one of the most important institutions of any minority community. While Hungarian immigrants in the United States established political lobby groups aimed at keeping the international outrage over the Soviet suppression of the 1956 revolution on the political agenda and maintaining a sense of solidarity among Hungarians, in Canada the Hungarian press assumed much the same role. Despite the politically varied nature of Canada’s Hungarian press, including a range of conservative, liberal and far-right papers, the ramifications of the 1956 uprising and the unprecedented influx of 38,000 Hungarians made the issue of the repressed revolution, Communism in Hungary and anti-Communism in Hungarian-Canadian communities the single most important and contentious political debate on the pages of the Hungarian weeklies for over three decades. Conservative, liberal and far-right papers all seemed to think that the revolution belonged exclusively to their political camp and that they were on the “right” side of the Cold War. Consequently, this issue of ownership over an event, which had at first served as a rallying cry and uniting force for most Hungarian-Canadians, led to a politically and ideologically divided community, based on the animosities of the Cold War. 

 

 

Thomas Aechtner, “The African-Canadian Mission Field: Investigating the Missional Identity of African-Canadian Christian Communities”. Faculty of Graduate Studies, University of Calgary.

 

Alberta’s thriving economy and population growth is accompanied by an ever-changing multiculturalism.  This diversity formulates an elaborate socio-political milieu, in which race, language, and religion influence intercultural exchange.  Though often neglected, the religious impact upon such cultural correspondence is profound, helping to shape the

weltanshauung of Alberta’s multiethnic population.  This intercultural dialogue spans numerous socio-political spectrums, incorporating the tension and flux of ethnic communities composed of identities in transformation.  Of particular interest is Alberta’s population of diasporic African-Canadian Christians, and the developing religious practices and beliefs of this group within the city of Calgary.  Apparent within these communities is an intricate dialectic between Canadian citizenship, (pan-)African nationalism, and religion; formulating a cultural identity composed of all three influences.  Associated with this identity is a strong missional focus, in which African-Canadian immigrants express the need to evangelize the post-church nation of Canada.  Though African-Canadian Christians acknowledge that European and North American missionaries were historically responsible for the proselytization of African peoples, these immigrant communities often insist that the reverse must now be initiated.  Europe and North America have neglected their spiritual heritage, and so African Christians are now to be charged with the responsibility of re-introducing Christianity back to those who had previously spread it.  These communities emphasize a religious mandate, in which cultural identity is a construct of Christian mission and church initiatives.  Thus, Canadian citizenship is often accompanied with a distinctively African evangelicalism, which informs the population’s socio-political perspectives.

 

Sara Amin, "Muslim Identities in the Construction of a Canadian Muslim Polity”. Department of Sociology, McGill University.

 

This study explores the contests over meaning of ‘being’ and ‘acting’ Muslim in Canada.  It examines the attempts by national political advocacy Muslim organizations in Canada to forge Muslim collectivities and claim representation of a Muslim polity. I ask, how and why do the collective answers by these organizations to the question of “Who are we Muslims?” emerge, diverge, converge, and change? I examine two organizations, the Canadian Islamic Congress (CIC) and the Muslim Canadian Congress, because they make claims to collective representation of the Muslim populations in Canada at a national scale.  I use content analysis of the press releases and newsletters from 1998-2006 of each organization to delineate the substance and meaning of the Muslim identities being mobilized in the public sphere in Canada. I then use interviews of organizational leaders, observation of organizational conferences and strategic meetings, as well as contextual political analysis to understand what explains the variation within and between these organizations in the collective identity they voice over time.  Grounded in the framing paradigm, this study takes into account its critiques by paying attention to both the strategic and the discursive dimensions of frame construction and collective identity formation.  Moreover, in attempting to understand the contentious nature of collective identity mobilization and construction, it also pays attention to how cultural mechanisms and relations affect the attempts of organizational leaders and members to deploy a given set of stories of ‘being and acting’ Muslim in Canada. This research contributes to our understanding of the ways collective identities are emergent from not only strategic goals of collective action actors but also their ideational and ideological dimensions and the intra-organizational and extra-organizational contexts in which collective action takes place. 

 
 

Benjamin Amoyaw, “Manitoba Immigration: An analysis of Manitoba’s Recent Immigrants”. Immigration and Multiculturalism Division. Manitoba Labour and Immigration.

 

Manitoba has increased its role in immigration and integration to support population and labour force growth, address skill shortages and strengthen diversity in the province. A provincial approach to increasing immigration has the advantage of enabling proactive and responsive programs to meet immigrants’ needs while supporting broader community and economic development objectives. A clear mandate and policy direction, coordinated partnerships and responsive services support progress in resolving systemic barriers to immigrants’ full participation. Significant policy frameworks supporting these directions include the Manitoba Action Strategy for Economic Growth and the Canada-Manitoba Immigration Agreement. As well, in 2006, after achieving the target of receiving 10,000 immigrants for that year, the Manitoba government announced a new target of 20,000 immigrants by the next decade (2016).
 

Within this context, it is pertinent to know who these newcomers are, and the strategic frameworks designed to ensure their inclusion into Manitoba society. This presentation will describe: Manitoba immigration levels for the past decade; the socio-economic characteristics of Manitoba’s newcomers; the geographic distribution of newcomers in Manitoba; settlement and integration programs for newcomers; and future directions.

 

John Anchan*, Esther Blum**, Lori Wilkinson***, Shiva Halli^, Joyce Cabigting Fernandes^^, and Bong-Hwan Kim^^^, Does it take a community to educate a child? Supports of newcomer children in their educational achievement”. *Department of Education. University of Winnipeg. **Department of Social Work. University of Manitoba. *** Department of Sociology. University of Manitoba. ^Community Health Sciences. University of Manitoba. ^^Department of Social Work. University of Manitoba. ^^^ Department of Sociology. University of Manitoba.    

 

This presentation examines the demographic, child and family factors that influence certain aspects of educational success of 11 to 13 year old immigrant and refugee children among the national groups (Filipino/a, Mainland Chinese, Hong Kong Chinese) in the six participating cities. Recent studies have tried to determine the academic achievements of newcomer children in various countries, but most research in this field lacks information on the parental support systems, parental human and social capital assets, and social networks of children. The presentation will examine the child’s academic achievements, the child’s perceptions of their abilities and difficulties at school, and outline the influences related to educational success. This presentation is based on our education core paper and will utilize the appropriate data weights from Statistics Canada should they become available.

 

 

 

Natalia Aponiuk* and John Lehr**. “Imagining identity:  A study of Winnipeg’s young adults” *Department of German and Slavic Studies, University of Manitoba, **Department of Geography, University of Winnipeg.

 

Since the time of their first arrival in Canada in 1891, Ukrainians have been negotiating their identity.   Mislabelled by the Department of the Interior as Austrians and described and recorded variously as Ruthenians, Little Russians, Galicians, Bukovynians, etc., Ukrainian immigrants were not officially recorded as Ukrainian until 1931.  Subject to intense pressure to assimilate and to abandon their Ukrainian heritage, they nevertheless maintained a Ukrainian identity despite a high degree of exogamy.  Successive waves of immigration by Ukrainians have played a role in rejuvenating the culture, and the geographical pattern of their settlement also helped to retain a sense of identity among the Ukrainian population.  This paper analyses a sample of young adults (18-25) in Winnipeg who self-identified as Ukrainian, and it examines how and why they so identify themselves.  We argue that among those of mixed ancestry, whether Ukrainian or other, ethnic self-identification is a personal construct that defies prediction.

 

Jody Baltessen, “Archives and Memory/Communication and Culture”. City of Winnipeg Archives.

 

Communication is a key component of cultural consolidation. Collections of documents and material artifacts such as those held by archives and museums are – at the same time – products of the society that creates them and tools used to communicate complex ideas regarding place, belonging, cultural traditions and common values from generation to generation. How well do we understand the social pressures that influence and shape the archival record and the institutions we entrust with the keeping of that record?  Examples from the City of Winnipeg Archives will be used to illustrate the interrelationship of archives and memory, communication and culture.

 

Antoine Bilodeau, Ghettos or Enclaves? Residential Segregation and the Political Adaptation of Immigrants in Australia. Department of Political Science, Concordia University.

 

In settling into the host-society, immigrants have a tendency to regroup together into certain geographical areas (Ley 1999). There is a debate about whether such geographical concentration of immigrants facilitates or impedes their adaptation in the host-society. On the one hand, the classical assimilation perspective argues that segregation limits opportunities for contact and participation within the host society and therefore slows down or even stops immigrants’ adaptation (Duncan and Lieberson 1959, Massey and Denton 1993, for a review see also van Kempen and Özüekren 1998: 1633-1634). On the other hand, others have argued that segregation facilitates adaptation by reinforcing ethnic community ties, protecting immigrants against feelings of social alienation and providing easier access to employment and social mobility (Portes and Bach 1985; Portes and Rumbaut 1990; Portes and Zhou 1993).

 

This debate, however useful, has focused more specifically on the social and economic adaptation of immigrants. Immigrants’ successful adaptation to the host society also has a political component, and the question addressed in this paper is: does residential segregation facilitate or impede the political adaptation of immigrants? Its large and increasing ethnically diverse population makes Australia an ideal case to assess the conditions leading to the successful political adaptation of immigrants. Using data from the most recent Australian Election Studies and Australian Census Data, this paper examines whether and how residential segregation of immigrants impact on their levels of political participation, efficacy, trust, satisfaction with democracy and attachment to the host-society.

 

Dafina Bislimi and Arden AbaziKosovo’s path to peace: is coexistence possible in a post-conflict multiethnic and multi-religious country?” Bislimi Group Foundation, Prishtina, Kosovo.

 

Religious tolerance is one major positive attribute that Kosovo has. Nevertheless, it has been neglected and even misrepresented for far too long. As Kosovo enters the final chapters of its undefined political status since the 1998-99 war, the coexistence of its different ethnic groups in an internationally created, supported, and demanded multiethnic new country in Europe depends on the further growth of Kosovo’s religious tolerance.  In this paper, using important and relevant data and indicators on Kosovo demographics, religions, interethnic relations, security, political and socio-economic conditions, we argue that the best way towards sustainable peace in Kosovo is through religious tolerance.

 

Because Kosovo’s people of different religions have harmoniously coexisted for centuries in this troubled Balkans region, religious tolerance and understanding are already in place and it would be quite possible to use this positive attribute to start and nurture better interethnic relations. And, since interethnic relations represent the field with the most lack of success in Kosovo, any progress in that direction (however small it may be) would encourage both the Kosovo local institutions and international organizations to work even harder to make sure that the newest country in Europe becomes a truly multiethnic and peaceful one.

 

This paper, drawing from Kosovo’s experience of ethnic conflict, sees the improved interethnic relations as key for Kosovo’s better future, and it connects them with a stabilized society, which in turn produces the necessary environment for not only better democratic governance, but also for a more sustainable economic development as well.  Therefore, coexistence of different ethnic and religious groups in a post-conflict country may be achieved through religious tolerance as in the case of Kosovo, and once it is achieved, it serves the greater purpose of that country’s development and growth.

 

 

 

 

 

A. Boruah, “Ethnicity among the Ao Nagas of Nagaland”. Department of Anthropology, Dibrugarh University.


Ao Naga is one of the dominant tribe in Nagaland and they are mainly concentrated in Mokokchung district of Nagalnd. After the inception of Christianity, so many changes are there among the Ao Nagas including social, religious, and political. But in spite of these change they still maintain their identity. In the present paper an attempt has been made to discuss some of their socio cultural aspects which help us to trace their ethnicity. 

 

 

Paul Bramadat, “Christianity and Ethnicity in Postcolonial Canada”. Department of Religious Studies, University of Winnipeg.

 

Is it the case that Canada can be understood meaningfully to be postcolonial, or to be moving toward postcolonialism?  Perhaps scholars of the intersection between religious and ethnic modes of identification will need to ask themselves if current methods, theories, and traditional bodies of evidence are still appropriate to the task of understanding the phenomena we study.  In this presentation, I address the relevance and implications of postcolonialism – qua process, narrative, critique, ideology, or even “counter-hegemonic discourse” – in Canadian religion and in the broader society.   Special attention will be paid to two sources of data: a book I have co-edited, entitled Christianity and Ethnicity in Canada, and ethnographic life history research I have conducted among Canadian West Indian Christians. 

 

Kathleen Buddle-Crowe, “Criminal Attributions: Accounting for Aboriginal Gangs in Western Canada”. Anthropology Department, University of Manitoba.

 

In the shadow of Aboriginal treaty rights and land claims struggles, a different order of “turf wars” is taking shape. Native gang members are currently engaged in mortal combat over street corners, “stables,” schools and local community centres as they vie for dominance in the street drug trade. In an effort to flesh out crime statistics, this study inquires into the social formation of urban Aboriginal gangs and into the exact practices of sociality in which gang members invest. It examines the sometimes contradictory responses of Aboriginal youth to structural factors that have contributed to the degradation of inner-city prairie neighbourhoods and to the dissolution of Aboriginal families. Focusing on the strategies Aboriginal youth employ to overcome multiple forms of invisibility, I draw attention to the ways that urban Aboriginal street gangs provide a response to the question of “place” for Aboriginal youth in Winnipeg.

 

Tom Carter*, Anita Friesen^, Chesya Polevychok^, and John Osborne^, “The Role of Housing in the Re-settlement of Refugees: The Winnipeg Experience”.

*Canada Research Chair in Urban Change and Adaptation and Professor of Geography, University of Winnipeg. ^ Canada Research Chair, University of Winnipeg.

 

Housing circumstances profoundly influence adaptation and life chances in a new society (Carter and Polevychok, 2004). Access to adequate, suitable and affordable housing is an essential first step in the resettlement process.  It is a basis from which newcomers look for jobs, language training and services. Without such housing people may have no security of tenure, compromised health, jeopardized educational and employment opportunities and an impaired social and family life (Kobayashi, Moore and Rosenberg, 1998 and Danso and Grant, 2004). Refugees, however, find their housing choices constrained by many factors. They generally face the greatest housing challenges of all newcomers and there are very few services that help new arrivals find adequate housing.

 

This paper presents the results of a study of refugee housing circumstances in Winnipeg. Key housing characteristics that affect re-settlement are documented and analyzed. The role played by landlords and public housing agencies is also explored, as is the effect of neighbourhood characteristics. The picture that emerges is one of very difficult housing circumstances that negatively affect the re-settlement process and the effective integration of refugee households. The longitudinal nature of the study facilitates exploration of refugee housing trajectories and indicates if housing circumstances improve with time.

 

Tejwant K. Chana, “Canadian Citizenship and the “New racism” of Cultural Differences in an Era of Globalization from a World System Perspective”. Department of Educational Policy Studies, University of Alberta.

 

Despite the historical existence of multi-cultures and multi-‘races’ in Canada, as well as an official national multiculturalism policy, there are a number of reports and studies that indicate significant public concern around multiculturalism and immigration within Canada.  The growth and development of Canada by immigrants from all over the world remains a significant part of Canada’s history and continuing evolution.  Why then does such widespread contestation prevail?  This paper will address this reality from the ideological lenses of the “new racism” and conceptualize from the world system perspective, and the implications this has for Canadian citizenship and global citizenship. 

 

Henry P.H. Chow, “Successful Aging: The Determinants of Physical and Psychological Well-being among Elderly Chinese Immigrants”. Associate Professor, Department of Sociology & Social Studies, University of Regina

 

The population of Canada is aging rapidly as a result of low fertility and increasing life expectancies. According to Statistics Canada, between 1966 and 2001, Canada’s total population increased 50% from about 20 million to 30 million. It has been projected that seniors will account for 18% of the population by 2021, and will rise to 23% by 2041.

 

Aging involves diversity within and among individuals, between cohorts, and across and within cultures. Immigrants to Canada, especially those who emigrate in later life, face unique challenges as they age. Studies have shown that minority elderly are more likely to feel isolated, experience psychological distress, and use fewer health care services. These research findings lend support to the multiple jeopardy theory which suggests that aging makes life worse for members of an ethnic group.

 

Drawing data from a questionnaire survey of elderly Chinese immigrants in a Canadian Prairie city, this paper attempts to explore the health care needs of these Chinese seniors and to disentangle the major factors that affected their physical and psychological well-being. Results of multiple ordinary least-squares regression analysis demonstrated that education, country of origin, use of medications, physical mobility, and perceived financial needs were significantly associated with physical well-being, whereas sex, marital status, length of residence, education, and physical mobility were significantly related to psychological well-being. (Word count: 219)

 

 

Serge Cipko, “The Man Who ‘Started All This Multiculturalism Business’: Paul Yuzyk and the ‘Third Force’”. Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies. University of Alberta

 

In October 1978 Julia Weston of the Ottawa Journal reported that six hundred people had gathered in the national capital’s Skyline Hotel to pay tribute to Senator Paul Yuzyk, who was marking fifteen years as a member of the parliament’s upper house. During the testimonial roast held for Senator Yuzyk at the hotel, that guest of honour’s various achievements were recalled. However, he was mostly remembered, Weston pointed out, as the “parliamentarian who promised to work tirelessly to spread respect for Canada’s ethnic minorities.” Referred to as “the man who ‘started all this multiculturalism business,’” according to the Ottawa Journal,  Senator Yuzyk took the stand in his maiden speech of 3 March 1964 that the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism was relegating a large segment of Canadian society to the status of second-class citizens by focusing its attention on English-French relations. All other ethnic groups formed nearly one-third of the population, he declared, and insisted that this “Third Force” be recognized as equal partners with the British and French. Paul Yuzyk’s concept of the “Third Force” is the subject of this paper.

 

Martin Cooke, “Taking a Life Course Perspective on Aboriginal Inequality in Canada”. Sociology Department and Department of Health Studies and Gerontology, University of Waterloo.

 

The relative disadvantage experienced by Aboriginal people has been an important focus for Canadian policy-related social research over the past few decades.  As well, life-course approaches to inequality and social policy have become popular in Canada and elsewhere, providing a more dynamic perspective and making use of new data sources and techniques. In the Canadian context, a life-course perspective may be a useful framework for improving our understanding of the interrelationships between state policies, broader social structures such as gender, class, and race/ethnicity, and the micro context of individual lives.  From a practical perspective, it provides a framework from which to view the ways in which different experiences and conditions can result in cumulative advantage or disadvantage. From a theoretical perspective, the life course provides a way of incorporating insights about the state and social inequality, along with individual agency and decision-making, and the interplay between the various domains of work, health, and the family.

 

Despite its current popularity, a life course approach has not been applied to questions about the inequality faced by Aboriginal peoples.  Indeed, there are several aspects of the life-course approach that need to be carefully considered if it is to be useful for researchers in this context. Specific institutions, policies and programs shape the lives of Aboriginal peoples in ways not experienced by other Canadians, and mainstream programs and institutions may not adequately recognize how life courses differ. In this paper, I present the critical features of a life-course approach towards the health, social, and economic conditions of Aboriginal peoples.

 

Carolyn Crippen, “An Icelandic heritage: The Frame for One Teacher’s Service 1946-2006”. Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba.

 

Manitoba educational historian, Dr. Sybil Shack, (1993) stated, “Teaching in rural Manitoba was clearly a woman’s job.” (p. 437) and Shack (1993) describes the responsibilities of the female rural schoolteacher,

 

Many were excellent teachers. Especially in rural Manitoba, they achieved the impossible. They taught large classes in substandard buildings, with little or no resources, and even less recognition. They spent hours making seatwork and preparing lessons to keep children at various levels gainfully employed while they, the teachers, were trying to teach the rest. They were responsible for coaching teams, organizing track meets and field days.  In rural Manitoba they often had to teach a 10-month program in fewer than eight months as children were kept out of school for seeding and harvesting, the girls as well as boys. They were also expected to take part in community activities, of which teaching Sunday school was by no means the least. (p. 446)

 

This paper will tell the story of one female teacher of Icelandic heritage who for 45 years has taught school in rural Manitoba. She continues to volunteer in schools today.  Sylvia May Peiluck is the descendent of Icelandic immigrants, who were early settlers in Gimli, Manitoba (New Iceland) and played a major role in establishing the Icelandic colony of Gimli.  Peiluck devoted her life to teaching in the Gimli area and she witnessed the developing history of the region and educational changes to the role of women, school curriculum, educational leadership, school facilities, school governance and parent advisory councils, inclusive special education, teacher autonomy, salaries, and certification. She attended the Winnipeg Normal School and also obtained a university education. Her long career bears witness to many social changes in the local community, the family structure and roles, the development of the Interlake region, the Icelandic fishing industry, the impact of the Icelandic language and church, and the yearly celebration of the Icelandic Festival in Gimli, Manitoba.  Peiluck’s life has been strongly influenced by Icelandic traditions and her story presents a valuable record on the rich Icelandic- Manitoba connection viewed through the lens of her cultural heritage.

 

Dan Cui, “Deconstructing Foreign Credential Recognition Policy Discourses”. Department of Educational Policy Studies, University of Alberta.

 

In this paper presentation, I will first use pragmatic policy analysis model to look at how the problem of foreign credential assessment and recognition is defined by dominant discourse, what contributes to this problem and what are the strategies offered by dominant discourse to solve this problem. Second, I use the policy text— Foreign Credential Recognition: an Alberta Strategy as a case study and employ Fairclough’s critical policy discourse model to analyze such dominant discourses. The purpose of doing so is to uncover how social identities, social relationships, knowledge and beliefs are embedded and constructed in the dominant discourses, how such discourse are discursively constructed and distributed and what are the political and ideological dimensions of such discourses.

 

Peter Doell, “Racial Tolerance in a Faith‑based Educational Institution”. Ambrose University College.

 

Are members of a conservative Christian, faith‑based university community more or less racially‑tolerant than are members of the public at large? This paper reports on an intra‑institutional study conducted at one faith‑based post‑secondary institution‑Ambrose University College. The research project is a replication of a 2007 national Leger

Marketing survey, done in conjunction with Sun Media, involving a representative sample of 3092 Canadians. That national survey attempted to determine the attitudes and behaviours of Canadians with regard to racial tolerance issues. The study that was the basis for the present paper sought to determine to what extent the attitudes and reported behaviours of a faith‑based learning community's members parallel the attitudes and reported behaviours of a random sample of Canadians on issues of racial tolerance. It was hypothesized that by virtue of intrinsic religiosity principles, members of the faith‑based learning community would report greater racial tolerance than that reported by the larger society of which they are a part. The literature on race/ethnic relations suggests that greater tolerance correlates positively with higher levels of education, and since the population of this study is a university community, it was expected that the major hypothesis would be upheld.

 

Leo Driedger, “Building Urban Global Communities: Mennonites in Winnipeg”. Department of Sociology. University of Manitoba.

 

After being in Winnipeg almost fifty years and studying Mennonites during most of that time, it is time to enlarge on the 100-page teaser I did for the World Mennonite conference in 1990.  Mennos celebrate 100 years in Winnipeg in 2007. What are these 20,000 doing in their 45 churches, half-dozen schools, 16 senior homes, 19 Menno newspapers, 800 businesses, scores of services and much more?  A hundred Mennonite pastors, 350 teachers (including 100 professors), 75 lawyers, scores of nurses and doctors, and lots of politicians seems a bit much.  What do Mennonite writers, artists and musicians think of all this?  It's the biggest pile of Mennos ever.  Have they been able to transfer from segregated rural reserves to vital urban, religious, ethnic communities which flourish?

 

Lauren Hunter Eberle, “Multicultural Rights as Human Rights: Establishing a Legal Framework for the Recognition and Protection of Cultural Practice in Canada”. University of British Columbia.

 

Although Canada has both a constitutional framework for multiculturalism and extensive human rights legislation, there remains significant ambiguity around an individual’s rights to cultural practice. This ambiguity is not limited to Canada’s Human Rights Act, but originates with the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which fails to list cultural practice along with other protections based on race, gender, religion, etc. While Canadians enjoy a significant number of cultural freedoms, many government practices and laws enforce the dominance of certain cultural groups at the expense of others, and these laws cannot effectively be appealed under current human rights legislation because they do not violate religious freedoms – culture’s closest cousin in human rights conventions. Efforts to expand the right to cultural practice in Canada are limited by the complexity of defining culture, and by the Canadian Multiculturalism Act’s weak language, which “fosters”, “promotes” and “encourages” but does not explicitly guarantee or enforce an individual’s right to culture. This paper investigates the reasons behind the reluctance to establish culture as a basic human right, including conflicts between cultural practice, existing Canadian law, and the human right of gender equality. Using the potential for advanced equality contained (but underutilized) in the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, a framework is proposed for the establishment of culture as an explicitly stated, fundamental human right that exist independently of other human rights such as protections based on religion or ethnicity.

 

Andrea Eidinger, Gefilte Fish and Roast Duck with Orange Slices: A Treasure for my Daughter and the Creation of a Jewish Cultural Orthodoxy in Postwar Montreal”. University of Victoria.

 

In 1950, the Ethel Epstein Ein Chapter of Hadassah-WIZO in Montreal published A Treasure for my Daughter: A Reference Book of Jewish Festivals with Menus and Recipes. Since its publication, this cookbook was, and continues to be, given to every Montreal Jewish bride as a wedding present, in preparation for her new life as a married woman. Despite the importance of this cookbook and others like it, little scholarship has been done on the subject of Jewish women in general, and their connections to food, and culture in particular. However, a close study of the rhetoric employed in A Treasure for my Daughter reveals that the 1950s saw the crystallization of Montreal Jewish cultural practices and the creation of a new orthodoxy. The purpose in creating this text was to educate Jewish women in ‘Jewishness’ in the face of generational disconnect, assimilation, and the threat of newly arrived Jewish immigrants. In creating this orthodoxy, the editors rejected their own immigrant past and highlighted their connections to the biblical past, modern Israel, and North America. The burden of cultural reproduction was placed on Jewish mothers, who were to educate and inspire their children in Montreal ‘Jewishness’ through joy, peace, beauty, and wisdom.  In the process, Jewish women in Montreal learned to be both Jewish and Canadian. What this study reveals is that identity, tradition, and authenticity among immigrant cultures are constantly being constructed and negotiated, and are thus filled with contradictions and inconsistencies.

 

Alexander Freund, “Paper 1: German-Canadian Encounters With the Nazi Past After 1945”. Chair in German-Canadian Studies. University of Winnipeg.

 

This paper first provides general background information about the immigration of Germans to Canada after 1945. It then surveys, on the basis of several hundred oral history interviews conducted since the early 1970s (by the author and several other researchers), the multiple ways in which three generations of German-Canadians were confronted with the Nazi past after 1945. All three generations of German-Canadians – the postwar immigrants, their children and their grandchildren – encountered North American representations and interpretations of the Third Reich, the Second World War and the Holocaust in North American media (print, radio, television, movies). They also experienced the shift from a national and North American focus on the war to an emerging global Holocaust memory in the 1970s. More importantly, in multiple everyday intercultural encounters, they were confronted with personal memories of the war and the Holocaust that troubled their own memories of this time period. In relations with Canadian veterans, other European immigrants, and Jewish Canadians, they learned about the experiences of those who had been victimized by the Nazis. Their responses ranged from rejection, denial, minimization via silence and incomprehension to attempts at learning about the Nazi past and Nazi victims. While such negotiations of memory was integral to becoming Canadian, they also showed the limits of multiculturalism under the condition of a national master narrative and dominant collective memory that was based on the opposition of good Canadians and bad Germans (Nazis).

 

John W. Friesen* and Virginia Lyons Friesen**, “Inculcating Indigenous Knowledge and Spirituality: An Algonquian Theory of Learning.”. * Graduate Division of Educational Research. ** Faculty of Communication and Culture. University of Calgary.

 

This paper will elaborate four steps outlined by Algonquian (Blackfoot and Cree) educators that parallel those posited by contemporary Euro‑North American humanist thinkers. The four steps include listening, observing, participating, and teaching. In this approach, Aboriginal initiates are first educated in traditional knowledge by listening to elders offering information, often through legends. Second, initiates are allowed to observe celebrated cultural practices, and third, they may be invited to participate in cultural and sacred events. Fourth and finally, they may be granted permission to teach about what they have learned. The underlying related pedagogical concept is that individuals learn a great deal about a concept by teaching it.

 

The Algonquian approach to teaching/learning parallels aspects of modern Euro‑North American methods fostered by advocates of the progressive education movement initiated by such educators as John Dewey and William Heard Kilpatrick of the USA, and Hubert C. Newland of Alberta and Loran DeWolfe of Nova Scotia. The parallels between the two systems of thought are intriguing and should be of interest to those attending the conference.

 

Lesley Gaudry, “What Clan Are You? An Exploration of Heritage and Ancestral Tourism”. Local Economic Development, University of Waterloo.

 

A persistent trend in the tourism field is the emergence of different types of niche markets. One niche form of heritage tourism that has gained popularity in Scotland since the Millennium, is ancestral tourism. This paper traces the nature and importance of ancestral tourism for Canadian Scottish descendents in Ontario, Canada. Based on a social constructivist and multiple methods approach, the ancestral tourism initiative was reviewed within the perspectives of both the demand and supply side. The demand side findings revealed that Canadian Scottish descendents identified with and participated more in their social heritage at the local level, than in their personal heritage in the homeland. The degree to which the descendents were involved in Scottish heritage and ancestry was dependent on a variety of factors such as the emigration date of the respective ancestor, life-changing circumstances, and external stimulants. Supply side findings characterized ancestral tourism as being “embryonic and full of potential”. Nonetheless, a few challenges for those involved in the facilitation and marketing of the ancestral tourism experience were also highlighted. Characteristics associated with the ancestral tourism product were diverse and the changing nature of the genealogical resources utilized by descendents was reviewed. A shortfall of marketing the ancestral tourism initiative to only international visitors was examined, despite healthy promotional efforts such as the “Ancestral Tourism Welcome Scheme”. Key recommendations for parties interested in the ancestral tourism initiative included increased coordination among stakeholders at a regional level, increased funding and functioning capacities for the volunteer sector, re-examining current marketing strategies to include the domestic level, expanding marketing activity in the Canadian context, and maintaining ancestral tourism as a modest and “intimate” trend.

 

Dawa Bhuti Ghoso, “Language Maintenance among the Female Tibetan Immigrant Youths in Toronto”. Asia Pacific Policy Studies Program, University of British Columbia.

 

The paper explores Tibetan language maintenance and shift among female Tibetan immigrant youths in Toronto. In the Tibetan community in Toronto, Tibetan language maintenance among those born in Canada and for those who migrated to Canada when they were young is a real concern. As such, this paper will be of practical significance in contributing to the knowledge of the actual state of Tibetan language in the community through the lens of the female youths. Female youths are an important demographic determining language trends in communities and so offer a unique window into the Toronto Tibetan community. It considers the various factors affecting language shift and maintenance such as pre-migration experience (residence and educational history) linguistic repertoires, domains of language use, institutional support factors (exposure to media) and attitude to native language. Data from a survey questionnaire is analysed to inform the research with supplementary information provided from interviews. The paper demonstrates that first language (L1) oracy is receding in its function towards personal domains such as speaking to parents at home. The only domain outside home, where Tibetan language is mostly used is at religious events. L1 literacy is at a critical stage where the shift is more pronounced and it seems that it was already underway before the female Tibetans youths came to Canada.

 

Audrey Gordon, Manitoba Labour and Immigration’s CED and Social Enterprise Approaches to Building Stronger Ethnocultural Communities”. Immigration and Multiculturalism Division. Manitoba Labour and Immigration.

 

As a result of the province’s Action Strategy for Economic Growth, Manitoba has experienced a significant increase in its immigrant and refugee populations.  In Manitoba, ethnocultural organizations play an important role in contributing to the settlement of newcomers by fostering the social and cultural cohesion that is critical to successful integration.  Moreover, the successful economic and civic participation of newcomers is critical to the preservation of vibrant ethnocultural organizations and communities in Manitoba. In 2005-06, Manitoba Labour and Immigration, Multiculturalism Secretariat, engaged the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCED-Net) in a study of Manitoba’s ethnocultural organizations.  The study’s purpose was to generate information on the existing community economic development practices of Manitoba’s ethnocultural organizations, particularly to understand how they might be supported by Manitoba Labour and Immigration, Multiculturalism Secretariat, to enhance the social and economic conditions of immigrants and refugees.  The study identified a need to strengthen and support Manitoba’s ethnocultural organizations through a CED Learning Strategy and by supporting social enterprise demonstration initiatives that champion the principles of CED. This presentation will examine the process utilized by the Multiculturalism Secretariat and CCED-Net to research and implement a comprehensive CED training program within Manitoba’s ethnocultural organizations.  This presentation will review best practices from the research study and CED Learning Strategy and will offer next steps for further support of social enterprises and long-term sustainability of CED in Manitoba’s ethnocultural organizations.

 

Shibao Guo and Yan Guo, Immigration, Citizenship and Multiculturalism:

Exploring the Role of Chinese Diasporic Communities in Canada”. Faculty of Education, University of Calgary.

 

Canada is an immigrant society. Immigration has played an important role in transforming Canada into an ethnoculturally diverse and economically prosperous nation. The 2001 Census of Canada (Statistics Canada, 2003) reveals that as of May 15, 2001, 18.4% of the total population were born outside the country, and that 13.4% identified themselves as visible minorities. Also according to the 2001 census, the Chinese have become the largest visible minority group in Canada, approaching a total of 1,029,400 up from 860,100 in 1996. At the provincial level, Chinese residents comprised the largest proportion of the visible minority populations in British Columbia (44%), Alberta (30%), and Saskatchewan (29%).

Despite our rich history in immigration and the strategic role it plays in our future, the issue of immigrant settlement and adaptation is still prominent. We are still grappling with questions such as: How do new immigrants adapt to a society very different from their own, with a different language, culture, and tradition? How do they navigate the complex paths that citizenship (all the skills required) entails? In this regard, where do they go for assistance? What is the role of ethnic organizations concerning immigrants’ settlement and integration? What role does multiculturalism play in this process? This paper aims to address such questions through a multiple case study of three Chinese diasporic community organizations in Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver. The research focused on two areas: 1) The founding and historical development of the organizations, 2) The role of they have played in building a community for immigrants. This study challenges the view that ethnic organizations promote "ghettoization" and separatism. On the contrary, this study concludes that SUCCESS played a significant role in promoting immigrant integration and citizenship participation.

 

Yvonne Hébert, “Youth and Identity Formation: Self-Understanding of Civic and Political Issues of Second Generation and Youth of Non-Immigrant Origins”. University of Calgary.

 

Based on youth’s narrative data, recently collected in three Canadian cities, Calgary, Winnipeg and Toronto, this paper addresses how participants understand civic and political issues as relevant to their sense of self. I examine participants’ written responses to four topics: (1) Canada as a place of cooperation or conflict; (2) your friends and opponents; (3) your values and comrades; as well as (4) equality and the environment. The analysis distinguishes the texts in terms of gender and generation while examining these with respect to real, imaginary and symbolic landscapes of self and other (Appadurai, 1990; Paakkunainen, 2000). The purpose of the analysis is to develop nuanced portraits of the participating adolescents’ multiple identifications and new ethnicities, if any, especially as these pertain to second generation youth, thus adding to previous analyses of identity and local/global spaces for the same youth. Of particular interest, such identifications/ethnicities are located in secure/ dangerous places, competing claims of equality or entitlement, and real/ imaginary/ symbolic landscapes, and are intrinsic to identity work involving notions of embeddedness, belonging, democratic values, rights and participation in social/civic/political society.

R. Connie Wawruck-Hemmett, “Uncle Louis's General Store: A Bridge Between Ethnic Islands”. Dalhousie University.

Shortly after the beginning of the twentieth century, Icelandic homesteaders began to settle in Vidir, in the Manitoba interlake. By 1910, when Slavs from Eastern Europe began to settle in Sylvan, to the west and north of Vidir, they joined not only the Icelanders, but also many English-speaking settlers. The nearest town which boasted a single store and a post office to serve the settlers was Arborg. The journey into town to pick up supplies and mail was a long and arduous one for the Sylvanites; they had to cross the entire Vidir district, including its challenging marshland. However, from 1914 to 1939 various enterprising homesteaders set up stores, often within the confines of their homes, to supply their neighbours' basic needs.

 

In 1939 Bronislaw Krywonos and his son Leon--better known as Barney and Louis Crones--launched their own home business enterprise. Within ten years it would grow to include not only a dry goods store, but also the only local gas pump and the Sylvan Post Office. The cash register, however, was often empty, as the Sylvanites tended towards a barter system, which involved the exchange of eggs, cream, and Seneca roots for goods and gas. Beyond this, the Sylvan General Store was also a primary social meeting place for the ethnically diverse peoples of the area. This paper, based primarily on the author's childhood memories, discusses her Uncle Louis' general store as the economic nucleus of a rural district, and a social bridge between its ethnic communities.

 

Frances Henry and Carol Tator, “Rightness of Whiteness: Enduring Racism in the Canadian Academy”. York University.

 

Based on a review of the literature as well as a sample of academics of colour interviewed for an ongoing research project on this subject, this paper will note the various structural barriers such academics  have encountered in the academy. As well, however, the emotional costs of feeling isolated and excluded from a white dominated institutional culture will be discussed. 

 

Rhonda L. Hinther, “Generation Gap: The Ukrainian Left, 1945-1972”. Western Canadian History, Archaeology and History Division Canadian Museum of Civilization.

 

Over the course of the twentieth century, organized progressive Ukrainians created one of the most dynamic working-class movements in Canadian history.  Nationally and locally, the Ukrainian left attracted supporters through cultural  and social activities, pro-labour newspapers, links with the Communist Party of Canada (CPC) and ties to the fight for peace, social justice, and workers' rights, activities where meanings of 'Ukrainianness' were reinforced, shaped, and changed over several generations. Members and supporters focussed their energies on two major priorities-improving the circumstances of workers and farmers in Canada and around the world and preserving and expressing Ukrainian cultural traditions in their adopted Canadian homeland.  At times, certain constituencies of the community valued and supported these priorities differently. Nonetheless, no matter how or when they were manifest, these concerns were reflective of both adaptation and resistance the immigrant generation and their children employed to adjust to and improve their personal and community circumstances.

 

While the movement enjoyed a period of relative stability and prosperity (in terms membership numbers and support) during Canada's interwar years, after the Second World War, its numbers declined. Thanks to the combination of generational change, gender, the Cold War, and assimilation, the Ukrainian left increasingly saw its influence wane as younger, Canadian-born members sought new outlets and forms of political activism outside the control of their parents and grandparents.  This paper will examine the Ukrainian left during the postwar era, focusing on intergeneration conflict and changes in gender roles.  While older members (particularly the dominant male leadership) sought to engage the younger generation, their unwillingness to relinquish power and authority-and address significant gender-related issues-ultimately rendered their efforts to attract and retain younger Ukrainian Canadians ineffective.

 

Hossein Houshmand, “Democracy and Diversity: The Case of Muslim Minorities”. Department of Religion, Concordia University

 

This paper concentrates on what political liberalism demands of Muslim citizens living as minorities in liberal states by way of a doctrinal affirmation of political conception of justice. My interest is not in what policies a liberal state should have, instead in what views emerging from a comprehensive doctrine are reasonable responses to the liberal terms of social cooperation. The central idea of Rawlsian political liberalism is that a conception of justice should be presented freestanding: that is, independent of particular philosophical or religious doctrines that might be used to explain and justify its content. This conception as Rawls suggests in his account of overlapping consensus, can win support from different ethical and religious traditions; each would offer the different lines of argument. But this enterprise may require new interpretation of those traditions by their advocates. To illustrate this point, I want to consider the case of Islamic political ethics. I seek to identify the requirements of an Islamic affirmation of the conception of justice in three ideas: Divine Law and human interpretation, distinction between God’s responsibilities/ rights and human responsibilities/ rights, as well as diversity of religious communities as a natural human condition. The central features of such an affirmation are that it be both acceptable from the standpoint of public reason (i.e., an affirmation of the freestanding conception of justice) and sufficiently Islamic to be plausible to believers (i.e., to provide that tradition with its most compelling statement).

 

S. Holyck Hunchuck “Some Lessons for Ukrainian Canadian historiography: The Ukrainian Labour Temples in Ottawa (1912-1965)”. Ottawa Women’s Slavic Studies Group

 

Ukrainian Canadian studies have tended to emphasize a historical geography of rural Prairie settlement, customs derived from agrarian folkways, and an architectural history of Byzantine churches and pioneer xati (mud daub and thatch houses).  Lesser-studied is the phenomenon of Ukrainian urban settlement in Eastern and Central Canada, and along with it, the lives of industrial labourers in cities, community institutions that were informed by politics rather than religion, and material culture based on mass-produced and industrial-vernacular forms but nonetheless Ukrainian in function. 

 

This paper is an investigation into the Ukrainian Labour Temples in Ottawa (1912-1965).

The city has a small Ukrainian community compared to other urban centres in Canada; nevertheless, members of its leftist wing managed for over fifty years to operate three successive community centres dedicated to Ukrainian culture, working class solidarity, and political agitation. They did so at a considerable geographic remove from larger Ukrainian Canadian communities, and with some of the most meagre of materials in one of the least supportive milieux in the country.  The study of these halls therefore provides an opportunity to consider the limits of Ukrainian Canadian history with reference to the demographics of settlement, to sociopolitical history, and to material culture.

 

Carl E. James, “Colouring Universities: Faculty of Colour Accessing Universities”. Faculty of Education. York University.

 

In the paper, I argue that insofar as universities are informed by Western European middle-class, patriarchal ethics, expectations and traditions, in a context of the state’s discourse of multiculturalism, then the norms, values and principles by which they operate are not raceless or colour-blind, neutral, fair and objective as they claim. Therefore, the assumption that potential job applicants are able to access positions if they are “qualified,” uninhibited by cultural, racial, ethnic or other barriers, belies the systemic ways in which identities/identifications such as race and ethnicity operate in enabling access to university faculty positions or getting past the interview process.

 

Maria James, “Parental Attitudes and Concerns about Child-weight Status and Child Feeding across Cultures: Implications for Public Policy”. Department of Family Social Sciences. Faculty of Human Ecology. University of Manitoba

 

Parental discipline is an important predictor of child health outcomes. Various studies have indicated the importance of food availability, socioeconomic status, maternal workload, and the degree and type of parental control in determining the food consumption of children. Parental responses to a child’s eating behaviour vary from one culture to another and also intraculturally. Available ethnographic data reveals a wide range of responses, ranging from physical punishment to allowing the child maximum control over his or her food consumption. The importance of understanding cultural differences in feeding practices and its implications for public policy are discussed.

 

Adrienne Kertzer, “Historical Trauma and Ethnicity in William Bell’s Young Adult Fiction”. Department of English. University of Calgary.

 

Despite the official government policy stating that “multiculturalism reflects the cultural and racial diversity of Canadian society” (“Canadian Multiculturalism Act” 371), the Governor General’s literary awards for children’s books rarely reflect that diversity. The ethnically identified character tends to be a bit player, as is evident in Pamela Porter’s The Crazy Man, a book that received the Governor General’s award in 2005 and many other awards.

 

The continuing “problem” of ethnicity in Canadian children’s literature is evident in the work of William Bell, a writer determined to publish fiction in which Anglo-Canadian history and experience are not the only story and passionate about making a more complicated global history accessible to his young adult readers. Bell does not minimize the costs of cultural and racial exclusion: repeatedly characters who are excluded suffer torture and death while characters who seek to learn a hidden history become violently ill. Forbidden City foregrounds a Canadian adolescent’s traumatic encounter with the massacre in Tien An Men Square in June 1989; The Cripples’ Club is narrated by a traumatized refugee from an unidentified Asian country; Stones works from the premise that the traumatic history of Black settlement in nineteenth-century Ontario is a mystery that needs to be uncovered yet once the narrator uncovers the truth of a Haitian woman stoned to death for witchcraft, he vomits and is compelled to shower: “I wished the shower could wash my memory also” (152). The challenge is learning to move beyond nausea, to find a way of living with traumatic knowledge.

 

Although the ethnically identified character frequently appears as narrator or as the central subject in Bell’s work, there are limits to his representations of Canadian ethnicity.  In his most recent novel, The Blue Helmet, unlike The Cripples’ Club, the adolescent protagonist is not ethnically identified, but a friend of the Canadian peacekeeper whose witnessing of ethnic conflict in the former Yugoslavia leads to madness and ends in suicide. Traumatic memory is not repressed and healed through narrative recovery; like the narrator in The Cripples’ Club, the peacekeeper vomits, but unlike him, he cannot recover. Part of what torments him is how people who once worked side by side end up slaughtering each other. The narrator of The Blue Helmet concludes, “His story was a mirror that showed me something about myself” (136), but what is missing in the mirror is any space for a positive notion of ethnicity. In an age of ethnic cleansing, the multicultural ideal may seem more necessary than ever, but in The Blue Helmet, the ethnically-identified Canadian character is once again missing in action. 

 

Olexander Kondrashov, “An Exploratory Study of Fourth Wave Ukrainian Immigration in Winnipeg: Problems and Perspectives of Immigrants' Adaptation”. University of Manitoba.

 

Ukrainian immigrants’ adaptation in Canadian society is a multifaceted and an ongoing process. Four waves of Ukrainian immigration can be traced in Canadian-Ukrainian history. The focus of this paper is to examine the causes and the socio-economic and socio-cultural dimensions in adaptation of the recent fourth wave Ukrainian immigration in Winnipeg, which occurred after Ukraine became an independent country.

 

This study employed a qualitative research strategy and relied on primary data, collected through sixteen in-depth face-to-face interviews. Each interview explored a Ukrainian immigrant’s adaptation experience in the areas of housing, education, employment, language and community connections.  The research was designed to facilitate the recent Ukrainian immigrant’s adaptation process in Winnipeg through determining their needs for community and social work services.

 

This study’s findings strongly indicates that the problems encountered by Ukrainian immigrants in the process of socio-economic and socio-cultural integration are both personal and social, necessitating the formulation of policies to facilitate the adaptation process and create desirable outcomes. This paper highlights the importance for the development of vigorous advocacy and community outreach informational programs to help Ukrainian newcomers in their adaptation to Canada in order to avoid the isolation and occupational discrimination that many of them experience. 

 

M. Christopher Kotecki, “The Photographs of W. J. Sisler: 1900-1926”. Archives of Manitoba.

 

 William J. Sisler was a teacher, school principal, coach, language innovator and author. He was asked to become principal of Strathcona School in 1905, a new school in an area of expanding development in Winnipeg. The majority of the students were new immigrants from central Europe. The enrolment included students from twenty-two countries and eighteen language groups. He developed an approach to teaching English as a second language, which he along with his teaching staff successfully implemented. In 1916 the Provincial Government decided to adopt his methods in all of Manitoba's schools. The Archives of Manitoba holds his papers and photographs, forty inches of textual material and one hundred and seventy-five photographs from an album as well as 75 glass lantern slides. The photographs are generally spontaneous and are of everyday events. This paper examines his varied photographic interests in his school and students as well as the different ethnic communities as he travelled through Manitoba. He published his book on language instruction in 1916 and Peaceful Invasion in 1944, recounting his experiences teaching in Strathcona and Isaac Newton schools from 1905 to 1938. His papers also include a manuscript for a study of the Manitoba Interlake. His teaching career extends through the period of rapid immigration to the prairies and Winnipeg. Note: The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Archives of Manitoba or the Government of Manitoba.

 

John Lehr, “School Formation and Educational Progress in the Ukrainian District of Stuartburn, Manitoba”. Department of Geography, University of Winnipeg.

 

In the late 1890s the Anglophone Canadian elite saw education of foreign born immigrants to be a crucial element in forging a new society in western Canada.  Although education was seen as a matter of national concern it was administered on a Provincial basis and a surprising degree of power rested in the hands of local communities.  School formation was fraught with difficulties in the largely Ukrainian Stuartburn district as the community lacked leadership, economic conditions of a poor pioneer community kept teachers’ salaries low, and attendance sporadic.  Social conditions were poor and were a barrier to recruitment.  Few Ukrainian immigrants had the qualifications necessary to teach.  To address these concerns Manitoba’s Department of Education established a Ruthenian Training School to create a cadre of Ukrainian teachers who they hoped would promote the English language and British values in frontier schools and expedite the process of assimilation and integration.  Instead, these teachers acted as a grass-roots intelligentsia, promoting social and cultural growth in the frontier communities and working for the retention of Ukrainian language and culture.

 

Nadia Lewis, “Restoring the ‘National’ in Diaspora: Negotiating Gender, Identity, and Islam in the Iraqi Diaspora to Toronto, 1970 to 2006”. Department of History, University of Toronto.

 

My paper examines how gender is negotiated within the Iraqi Muslim diaspora to Canada, and how women talk about their situations both as female immigrants and as Muslim women.  By examining these women within a diasporic (and transnational) framework, I explore the formation of their identity in Toronto as part of an increasingly dispersed (trans)national group.  Toronto is a site of multi-generational Iraqi immigration over the past century, and continues to be among the most heavily populated centers of the Iraqi Muslim community in North America.  By comparing the formation of Iraqi identity within the framework of Muslim immigrants, I hope to contribute to a growing body of comparative literature exploring the importance of the border between Canada and the US to Muslim identity and ethnicities. This project also contributes to an emerging shift in diaspora studies toward considering groups in terms of nationality as well as religion.  Iraqi immigrants provide an excellent example of why a ‘Muslim’ designation is inadequate for examining the construction of diasporic identity in Canada. 

 

Jenne MacLean, “Slumber Ethnicity Meets Settler Frontier: Ethnic Friendly Societies and Class Activism in Colonial Nova Scotia”. Department of History, Yale University.

The proposed paper is a slice from my dissertation on the subject of ethnic activism in colonial Nova Scotia 1824-1843. My research is concerned with the first twenty years of the colony’s most widely circulated farmer’s almanac. Discreetly folded into the back pages of Nova Scotia’s Belcher's Farmer’s Almanac is a catalogue of the colony’s most influential families. The relational database I have built connects these nineteenth-century colonials to an unpredictable nexus of political, economic, and religious associations that were, more often than not, ethnically aligned. My short conference paper will be confined to Halifax’s first friendly society, the North British Society (fnd.1768). The NBS also held the dubious honour of being the colony’s first association of lowland Presbyterian Scots. The most provocative work on the subject of Scottish ethnicity in Canada over the last twenty years has usefully challenged the creative oversimplification of Nova Scotia’s “Scottish roots” to the advantage of the provincial tourist industry. This bent in the region’s historiography has had the unintended effect of obscuring the critical role that “slumber” ethnicities (collective identities that bolstered racial whiteness) play in the development of the region’s unique system of colonial self-government and more importantly, the long-term consequences of their social and cultural initiatives. As the Canadian government presently develops processes to award reparations to visible minorities on the basis of definitions of race and ethnicity, my work concerns the continued social and political significance of the British Atlantic world’s first “hyphenated” cultural entities in a colonized and colonizing world.

Rebecca Malhi and Susan Boon, “Citizenship and Roots: Using Positioning Theory to Examine South Asian-Canadian Women’s Talk about Ethnic Identity”. University of Calgary.

 

Members of visible minority groups describe their ethnic identities in a variety of ways. For example, they may present themselves at different times and to different audiences as exclusively Canadian, exclusively ethnic, or with a hybrid Canadian-ethnic identity. Previous research has shown that individuals from visible minority groups may feel that they are viewed as outsiders regardless of how long they have lived in Canada (Moghaddam & Taylor, 1987). Thus, shifting ethnic self-definitions could reflect ways in which minority individuals negotiate inherent tensions between disparate Canadian and ethnic identities. Positioning theory (Davies and Harré, 1990) suggests that ethnic identity descriptions are "subject positions" that may be dynamically adopted and discarded for specific purposes during the process of interacting with others in conversation. In the current research, we used qualitative interviews with a sample of South Asian-Canadian women to investigate how speakers actively chose to position themselves with certain ethnic identities, how they positioned other people, and how they resisted being positioned. We used discourse analysis to identify socially available discourses and devices that participants recruited to support their positions. For example, participants frequently made a distinction between their "formal" public identity (e.g. nationality, citizenship, etc.) and their private "felt" identity (e.g. ethnic "roots"). The goal of our analysis is to facilitate an understanding of the intricate negotiation between ethnic and national boundaries that may be engaged in through conversation, and to provide a starting point for further exploration into the interconnections between ethnicity, nationality and gender.

 

Gloria J. Browne-Marshall, “Relative Freedom: Black Emigres, Slavery and the Laws of Early Canada”. John Jay College of Criminal Justice and the Graduate Center of the CUNY.
 

What was the fate of early Black emigres to Canada? Both Canada and the United States were wrestling with the issue of slavery, independence, and federalism. Drawing on legal research from five Canadian provinces, this paper examines the reception Black emigres received during this critical period for Canada, the United States of America, and the Blacks who sought freedom.

 

Britain’s agreements during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 provided freedom in British Canada for any slaves who fought for England. Free Blacks, frustrated with restrictive race laws in the U.S., emigrated to Canada. Escaped slaves traveled thousands of miles via the Underground Railroad from the American South to Canada. None of these Black emigres were aware that slavery and racial discrimination were a fact of life in Canada, as well. 

 

Biographers, autobiographies, and nonfiction research of that era reveal that the freedom garnered in Canada was relatively better than that found in the United States. However, relative freedom is not living free. Few of the early Black settlements flourished. Many Blacks returned to the United States. Others resettled in Africa. What role did race discrimination play? Governmental conduct, statutes, proclamations, and case law of the period provide extraordinary insight into the treatment of Black immigrants in Canada. This legal construct allows objective analysis of early Canada’s response to the arrival of Blacks, fugitive and free, from the United States during the years 1775 to 1867.

 

Orest Martynowych, “Vladimir J. (Kaye) Kysilewsky and the Ukrainian Bureau in London, 1931-40: The Formative Years of a Canadian Civil Servant”. Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, University of Alberta

 

 

In recent years Vladimir J. (Kaye) Kysilewsky (1896-1976), who served as ethnic liaison officer and head of the ethnic press section, Nationalities Branch, Department of National War Services (1941-45) and Citizenship Branch, Departments of the Secretary of State (1945-50) and Citizenship and Immigration (1950-62), has attracted the attention of historians writing about postwar immigration to Canada. Depending on the ideological baggage they bring to bear on the subject, historians have described Kaye-Kysilewsky as a “tool of the state” who did all in his power to stymie politically active, anti-Soviet nationalists within the Ukrainian-Canadian community (Luciuk, Searching for Place, 2000), or as a “committed Cold Warrior” and “active leader within the nationalist, anti-Communist Ukrainian-Canadian community” who worked with anti-Communist ethnic editors and leaders to manipulate and undermine the ethnic left in Canada (Iacovetta, Gatekeepers, 2006). While both assessments contain an element of truth – Kysilewsky was extremely suspicious of Ukrainian right-wing nationalism and hostile to apologists of Soviet Communism – they do not explain and elucidate his views and objectives.

 

A valuable insight into Kysilewsky’s wartime and postwar activity may be gained by examining the evolution of his views during the 1930s when he served as director of the Ukrainian Bureau in London.  As an employee of the non-partisan Bureau, which was funded by a wealthy American heiress and her Ukrainian husband, Kysilewsky monitored the violation of human and civil rights in the partitioned Ukrainian lands; directed a press information bureau; established contacts with British politicians, journalists and academics; and attempted to build bridges between British sympathizers and moderate Ukrainian politicians in Poland, central Europe and North America. His efforts to bring issues like the famine in Soviet Ukraine and the violation of Ukrainian minority rights in Poland to public attention confirmed Kysilewsky in the belief that Soviet Communism was the greatest enemy of the Ukrainian people and also convinced him that the sordid political intrigues, belligerent rhetoric, violent tactics and pro-Nazi sympathies of Ukrainian émigrés who supported the conservative Hetman Paul Skoropadsky and the terrorist Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) were counterproductive and abhorrent to potential allies, above all those in the English-speaking world.  The strategy developed in response to these challenges in the 1930s – the dissemination of information bulletins; work with British voluntary organizations, committees and academics; and efforts to promote a greater appreciation of liberal democratic values among nationalist extremists – would be adopted by Kysilewsky in the course of his work as chief liaison officer in the postwar years. The paper is based on Kysilewsky’s voluminous correspondence and his detailed unpublished and unedited Ukrainian-language “London Diaries” at Library and Archives Canada (MG 31 D 69), on the Ukrainian-Canadian press, and on personal correspondence in manuscript collections in several Ukrainian-Canadian archives.

 

 Manuel Meune, “Between Suffering, Silence and Denial: The Nazi Past in the German-Canadian Press”. Université de Montréal.

 

The Germans of Canada who arrived during the 1950s and 60s carried the weight of Nazism upon their shoulders – regardless of what their position might have been during that period. Even so far from Germany, they had to come to terms with the German past, and to deal with individual or collective suffering, in an immigration context where the discussion about the nature of the Third Reich (Vergangenheitsbewältigung) could not easily take place. Many chose silence, but victimisation also marked the German-Canadian discourse, especially because a large number of German immigrants were people who had been expelled from the “eastern territories” after 1945. The insistence upon the status of victim was persistent in the German-Canadian press, that evolved on the margins of the debates that raged in West-German society, and that hardly encouraged its readership to think through the notion of their own moral responsibility regarding Nazism. Some of the readers not only desired to begin anew after the Nazi catastrophe, but also wanted to minimise Auschwitz and put it on the same level as the Vertreibung (Expulsion). This strategy, that sometimes ended in open anti-Semitism or Holocaust denial, can be seen in the letters to the editors of the Kanada Kurier, a weekly (1889-2004) that constantly stressed that collective pain of “Vertriebene” (Expelled) had hardly yet been heard, and gave a voice to those who therefore were less than interested in thinking through German history in terms of the sufferance that Germans have inflicted.

 

Patricia Monture, "Doing Academia Differently:  If Race, Class and Gender Really

Mattered". Department of Sociology. University of Saskatchewan

 

This paper provides a discussion of how a university might function in terms of pedagogy, curriculum and other structural features of the system if issues that create division were not present.  It theorizes how an anti-racism model of knowledge production and pedagogy would create an inclusive learning environment for all members of the academy. 

 

Catherine A. Murray and Sherry S.M. Yu, “Korean Media in B.C. and Cultural Citizens”. School of Communication. Simon Fraser University.

 

Vancouver is not only the second most diverse city, but also the site of major ethnic specialty services.  There is one of the four multilingual TV stations in Canada, and more than one hundred ethnic media outlets, which serve approximately twenty third-language groups other than that of English and French.  Among the top three “mother tongue and home language” of the ethnic minorities in B.C. – Chinese, Punjabi, and Korean - the Korean media is one of the fastest growing media to population size.  There are more than twenty outlets for the 31,965 people of Korean origin compared to the similar number of outlets for the 365,485 people of Chinese origin (Stats Canada, Census 2001, Visible minority population in B.C.).  In this sense, it is worthwhile to pay close attention to the Korean media and explore the driving force behind.

 

This paper looks into the Korean media in two dimensions: market and public sphere.  To do this, it attempts to carefully examine; 1) the ethnic media as a business venture; 2) the ethnic media as an editorial; 3) socio-economic reality of the Korean community; 4) dual citizenship and a sense of locality.  This comprehensive approach may help understand how growing economic imperatives and social obligations that ethnic media may have encountered today will influence the formation of cultural citizenship and social cohesion.

 

Temitope B. Oriola, “New Cultures, New Laws: Canadian Belonging and Assessment of Justice Agencies among Nigerians in Winnipeg”. Department of Sociology, University of Manitoba.

 

Diasporic communities are everywhere conceivable in today’s globalizing world. Winnipeg, albeit rather slowly, has not been left out of the increasing diversity of the Canadian population sequel to surge in flows of “third world” bodies hitherto considered persona non grata in Canada. Dispensing with the analytically useful, but praxiologically useless concept “Black,” this paper explores Canadian belongingness and assessment of the police, courts and correctional institutions by a sample of Nigerians in Winnipeg. The interplay of belonging and perceptions of and experiences with justice agencies is highlighted. The paper is anchored on a theoretical framework informed by Homi K. Bhabha’s hybridity nay postcolonial theory and the peripatetic in-betweenness such peoples occupy. The paper benefits from the richness of data mixed methodology offers in not only being pre-occupied with scientism cum quantitative methodology, but in also asserting the voices of the unheard through interviews.

 

Naki Osutei, “My Red, Gold and Green Bindi: The Semiotics of Identity, Authenticity and Ownership in Multicultural Canada”. College of Social and Applied Human Sciences. University of Guelph.

 

The title of this paper refers to the hybridization of symbols traditionally associated with Jamaican (red, gold and green) and Indian (bindi) cultures respectively.   Popular culture provides myriad examples of hybridizing cultural symbols as a means of celebrating multiculturalism.  This study explores Toronto-based exemplars of this phenomenon in an effort to identify how these cultural communities respond to the adoption and fusion of what they consider “their” cultural symbols in mainstream advertising and what factors contribute to their differing reactions.

 

Using the Fashion Cares & AIDS Committee of Toronto “Bollywood Cowboy” campaign and the Roots Canada “Roots, Rock and Reggae” campaign, as a platform, issues of authenticity, cultural ownership/membership and the liminality of culture are examined.  The research highlights concerns over mis-representation and intellectual property marring the possibility of viewing campaigns as a new achievement in multiculturalism.  Employing multicultural and semiotic theories, an argument is made for the disengagement of essentialist modes of determining cultural membership and ownership.  It proceeds to consider how the physical and social relocation of peoples affects how “authentically” culture can be re-produced and re-presented.

 

As we traverse through an increasingly culturally diverse moment in our history, there will be many more attempts at imagining and re-imagining culture.  Our awareness of the challenges related to authenticity and ownership will figure greatly into negotiations of sharing and preserving of cultural symbols as well as the manner in which we construct Canadian-ness. Thus, not only is this study an important contribution to the multiculturalism discourse, it is critical to furthering our understanding of social cohesion.

 

Eric Payseur, “Echo of a Generation: A Polish Canadian Youth Experiment in the 1970s”. Department of History. York University.

                          

The First National Polish Canadian Youth Convention was held in October 1969 at York University in Toronto. A major result of this meeting was the creation of Echo as a socio-cultural “Canadian Publication of Polish Youth,” which debuted in February 1970 and lasted until 1975. Despite being children of displaced persons, Echo’s staff comprised university students who were as much, if not more, Canadian as Polish-Canadian. Their questioning of Polish-Canadian identity and generational differences took place in a 1970s zeitgeist that aided Echo’s rise, popularity, and demise. I argue that this 1970s social milieu, the previous generation’s political beliefs, and the policy of multiculturalism sped up the process of Canadianization.  For example, as the magazine evolved, the changes and continuities regarding gender roles and female representation(s) paralleled those in the broader society. Yet, these youth were not always affected by Canadian society in the same way as non-ethnic, middle-class Canadian youth. Multiculturalism was crucial in these students’ debates about hyphenated identity and the problems with the older generations.  Their activism took a form beyond symbolic ethnicity towards a heightened sense of Canadian citizenship and global awareness because multiculturalism had given them an avenue to respond to their elders’ uncompromising political beliefs.

 

Echo was a successful forum for young second-generation Polish Canadians across Canada to debate the meaning of Polish Canadianness and discover themselves in a 1970s context of greater ethnic activism and changing social attitudes.   

 

Mai B. Phan,“Sate Reflexivity and Human Rights Reforms: Discursive Maneuvers Around Contradictions and Institutional Constraints in the Policy-Making Process”. School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research. University of Kent.

 

Racism, group-based inequalities and other illegitimate forms of oppression have increasingly been defined as social ills by Western democratic governments, particularly in Canada and Britain. Moreover, governments and public institutions are reflecting on the ways that their practices and activities contribute to and reproduce racial/ethnic inequalities, among others. This is a recognition that institutionalized inequalities require an institutional response. The process of human rights reforms in Canada and Britain reveal the extent of institutional reflexivity in this regard, and also the contradictions and limitations of the state in practicing ‘emancipatory politics.’ Actors involved in institutional reforms must be engaged in arguments and counter-arguments for the most politically and administratively viable solution to perceived problems. An analysis of political speeches and parliamentary debates on the reform of human rights systems in Canada and Britain are placed in their social context. This paper discusses theories of institutional change, focusing on the role of conflict and crises in motivating reforms, and also in discursive practices. Drawing together neo-institutional analysis and social discourse analysis, I argue that we need to consider the interaction between ideas, norms, and structure, particularly how powerful discourses can mediate to shape (and constrain) meaningful change. Political actors creatively use language to construct arguments that minimize, conceal, deny or reconstruct the contradictory logics that the state must operate under in different policy fields. For these reasons, the emancipatory state is a fragile construction of the modernized age.

 

Jan Raška, “Allies Abroad, Enemy Aliens at Home: Canadian Czechs and Slovaks and the Wartime “Enemy Aliens” Registration Issue (1938-1942)”. Department of History. The University of Ottawa.

           

       This paper will analyze the relationship of the Canadian Czech and Slovak communities with their “home” government through diplomatic representation in Canada. The Second World War observed the single largest drive towards (Czechoslovak) socio-political organization by Czechs and participatory Slovaks in Canadian history. Nazi Germany’s occupation of the Czechs lands (Bohemia-Moravia) in 1939, and its alignment with a newly independent Slovak state, the political relationship between Canadian Czechs and Slovaks was dramatically altered. Due to the large influx of Slovak emigrants to Canada in search of work and because of Czechoslovakia’s state centralization (Czechification) of Slovakia during the 1920s and 1930s, a strained relationship began to develop between Czechs and nationalist Slovaks in Canada. Prior to 1939, over 80 percent of all immigration from Czechoslovakia was Slovak.  Czechoslovakia maintained contact with its nationals through consulates, embassies, and ethno-cultural associations in the country of resettlement. These offices sought to promote loyalty to Czechoslovakia’s policies in the hopes that their nationals would adopt their home government’s ideology and eventually fight for their homeland in the event of a war. The intermediary within this paradigm was the Consulate General in Montreal, which oversaw all diplomatic activity between the Czechoslovak government-in-exile in London and Czech and Slovak nationals in Canada. As a result, Ottawa instituted its “Enemy Aliens” registration drive in 1939, to control nationals from enemy states. The Czechoslovak Consul General sought to create a “loyalty list” for all Czechoslovak nationals in Canada, and evidence of disloyalty against nationalist Slovaks who had come to support the wartime Slovak republic.

 

Mavis Reimer, "Making it Home: Manufacturing Consent in Canadian Children's Literature". The Canada Research Chair in the Culture of Childhood. University of Winnipeg.

 

The most valued story in English-language Canadian children’s literature is a narrative in which the central child character, pushed out of an originary home by the decisions of powerful adults, journeys to an alien place and chooses to claim the strange space as a new home. This narrative pattern is found in stories from various genres of children’s literature, including domestic realism, adventure, and fantasy, but it is, essentially, the immigrant’s story. In this paper, I look at a group of award-winning children’s texts of this narrative pattern that centre explicitly on stories of immigration–including, among others, Barbara Smucker’s Days of Terror (1979), Julie Lawson’s White Jade Tiger (1993), and Sean Stewart’s Nobody’s Son (1993)–and consider how the child characters inside the stories and the child readers outside the story are persuaded to understand such displacement as a happy ending and at what cost such a happy ending is achieved.

 

 

Renée Richardson, “Exploring Genealogical Interconnected Ethnic Heritage: A Preliminary Social Analysis of Historically Oppressed Ethnic Minorities in Nova Scotia”. Department of Sociology. Acadia University.

 

Historically oppressed ethnic minorities represent a significant part of Nova Scotia’s settlement history. Black Loyalists, Mi’ kmag and Acadians have all experienced atrocities at various historical times.  If one delves into the archives of history, connections are possible within families centuries old, adding various ethnic minority groups to families whom may not have otherwise realized their proper ancestral history. 

 

Ethnic minority groups were historically dispersed across Nova Scotia, often being settled in rather remote areas. There is evidence that these groups relied upon each other as a means to survive. Exclusion from white society, I suggest, contributed to the social context of marriage for these early settlers. These groups often work in labor intensive jobs and had to deal with gathering the necessities for survival. Genealogical interconnections were developed within this particular aspect of settlement history.

 

This topic is important because of the wealth of origins Nova Scotia holds.  In 1881, over 98% of Nova Scotia’s residents belonged to one of seven broad “ethnic groups”.  These groups were not evenly distributed across the province. Themes emerge during a series of semi structured interviews such as: early treatment in schools, changing acceptance of marrying outside of one’s race, importance of heritage in inter-ethnic marriage, varying ideas of racism and contentions surrounding the disclosure of family heritage. 

 

Through social analysis, using primary documents via archival research, content analysis, semi-structured interviews and secondary sources; I strongly indicate that three historically oppressed ethnic minorities; Acadian, Black Loyalists and Mi’kmag are interrelated/ intermarried throughout a significant list of surnames in Nova Scotia.

 

Joanna Anneke Rummens, “Ethnic and Canadian Identification among Newcomer Visible Minority Children in Canada”. Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.

 

This paper examines the personal identification patterns among newcomer visible minority immigrant children in Canada and determines associations with familial, social and contextual factors.  The objective is to determine which factors are associated with choice and relative strength of ‘ethnic’ versus ‘Canadian’ identifications.  Associations with sense of belonging and links with child mental health and wellbeing are also explored.  Data analyses use cross-national data from Wave I of the New Canadian Children and Youth Study (NCCYS) for 11-13 year old newcomer pre-adolescent youth from the Mainland Chinese, Hong Kong Chinese and Filipino communities of Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg.

 

Louise Saldanha, “Making Critical Space: Reflections on Race, Children’s Literature, and Canada”. Department of English, University of Winnipeg.

 

As part of this roundtable discussion, I would like to address the politics surrounding representations of race in some contemporary Canadian children’s literature. My interest lies with how these representations are affected by normalised or invisible constructions of “whiteness”—particularly those produced and sustained within contexts of official and popular forms of Canadian multiculturalism. For, when racialised images and narratives appear in Canadian children’s literature, they most often enter spaces—discursive and material—where certain already existing and pervasive racial understandings of multicultural inclusivity are in place. As a result, these representations are positioned within a nexus of commonsense assumptions and attitudes that problematically preserve eurocentric values and culture as the ethnic core while tolerating and arranging others hierarchically as “multiculture.” Eurocentric values and culture are reinscribed as the norm to which all others must conform. Emerging in this context, racialised children’s literature tends to be assigned a specific cultural work of racial maintenance that works against the possibilities of these texts to contest white hegemony.           But, my intent is to disturb this often uncritical enlistment of these texts in celebrating diversity and to take them up, instead, as tools to meaningfully investigate the inadequacies of Canada’s policies of tolerance and acceptance.  It is with this intent that I will examine the ability of diasporic Canadian children’s literature to create new spaces for reading and theorizing race missed in current strategies of inclusion (and interpellation).  This paper offers itself, then, as an inquiry into the potential of representations of race in Canadian children’s literature to intervene in the production of racial identities, and the possibility of these representations for sharing and testing alternative ways of seeing, of making meaning, of learning and teaching fundamental to equitable social change and a genuinely multicultural Canada.

 

Sarbeswar Sahoo, “Ethnic Identity and Sectarian Civil Society: Evidences from India”. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. National University of Singapore.

 

Ethnic violence has often obstructed the smooth flow of democracy in India. Vested interest and vote bank politics has mobilized identities against one another. Given such political climate, civil society has been fragmented/ polarized on particularistic lines and involved in patron-client politics. Civil society, which once was boasted for its democratic contribution, now is playing sectarian politics and standing as a threat to the very secular, democratic and multi-ethnic culture of Indian society. Based on the fieldwork recently carried out in Southern Rajasthan (India), the paper makes an attempt to explore the relationship between an ethnic Hindu(tva) organization called the Vanvasi Kalyan Parishad (VKP) and its role among the tribals. It argues that using development as a medium of entry into the poor tribal regions, the VKP has managed to gain political dividends during the election. Representing the tribal interests, capitalizing on the idea of ‘victim-hood’ and staying in constant touch with them, it has established itself as a ‘counter-hegemonic force’ against the communists (atheists) and Christians (proselytizers) in the region. Though named as the tribal welfare forum, it is grounded on the foundations of Brahminical Hinduism with the hidden agenda of ‘Hinduising the tribals’ and ‘saffronizing the tribal heartland’ for making India a Hindu nation. Instead of celebrating the plurality and diversity of cultures, and distinctness of indigenous identity, it has deliberately been involved in a process of tribal assimilation into the Hindu society. This sectarian politics of VKP has developed a ‘culture of violence’ in the tribal areas which has threatened the democratic ethos of Indian society. Given that violence marks many multiethnic societies, this paper may well have great practical meaning since it throws some light on the ambiguous relationship between ethnic identity, pluralism and democratic culture in Indian society.

 

Ellen Scheinberg, “ ‘For better or worse’: dependency and deportation after the Second World War”. Ontario Jewish Archives, University of Ottawa.

 

This paper will address how married immigrant women were treated by the Department of Citizenship and Immigration after the war, once their husbands were targeted for deportation. Under the Immigration Act at the time, married women and children were viewed as dependents and were subject to deportation if the husband – the head of the household – had committed an offence under the Act.

 

Relying on deportation case files – along with many other sources -- produced by the Immigration Branch, this paper will examine the diverse experiences of these women. While some who enjoyed close relationships with their spouses resigned themselves to returning to their homelands with their husband and children, many others, particularly those who were separated, attempted to remain in Canada and fend off the deportation order that included them as a dependent.

 

Some of the women in this study were the victims of abuse, who had established some distance from their spouse in this country, and were fearful of being on the same ship as their spouse and having their fate tied to that of their abuser. Hence, this paper will reveal how this clause within the Act served in tying the wife to her husband, punishing her for his transgressions. In turn, it will also reveal how the department implemented these actions despite the status of the relationship, embracing the notion that all married couples and families should be kept together despite the circumstances. As a result, many women who were the victims of abuse and deathly afraid of their husbands, were pulled into this process, despite their pleas to be heard independently from their spouse.

 

David Seljak, “Religious Intolerance and Discrimination in Canadian Society”. St. Jerome's University at University of Waterloo.

 

While Canadians often assume that we have left behind the era of religious intolerance and discrimination, there is ample evidence that these forces continue to operate in Canadian society, especially in our important institutions.  Increases in the number of anti-Semitic and Islamophobic incidences as well as public controversies around "reasonable accommodation" of the religious practices of minority religious communities suggest that religious intolerance and discrimination continue to hinder the goals of the Canadian policy and tradition of multiculturalism. This paper looks at forms of religious intolerance and discrimination in a variety of social institutions in Canada today, including the workplace, schools, healthcare, local politics, the media, and the Internet.  Much of this intolerance and discrimination is rooted in cultural assumptions about who and what is appropriately Canadian.  However, much also stems from the hidden assumptions, values and structures of our institutions. Given the continued presence of religious intolerance and discrimination in Canadian social institutions, any project to make Canada a more fully participatory, egalitarian, and respectful society that does not address religious discrimination and intolerance leaves a large part of the work undone. This paper flows out of a report by the author for the Strategic Policy, Research and Planning Directorate of the Multiculturalism and Human Rights Program at Canadian Heritage.

 

R. Bruce Shepard, “The American Origins of Canadian Immigration Policy”.  Collections and Exhibits. The Manitoba Museum.

 

While the English/French alliance is currently given central place in scholarly analysis of the origins of Canada, it is crucial to a complete understanding of the country’s development to recognize that immigration to settle the Canadian Plains region was a key element in the rationale of Confederation. When A.T. Galt, Minister of Finance for the colony of Canada, and one of the leading proponents of the unification scheme, rose in the colonial assembly in 1865 to press for adoption of the agreement with the other colonies he noted the benefits which the pact would bring.  Chief among these, in his mind, was the opportunity to obtain and develop Rupertsland, the Hudson’s Bay Company Territory.  Canada was too weak to undertake the task alone, the Finance Minister admitted, but joined with the other colonies they would have the means.  Canada needed the western territory, according to Galt, to open it up to the youth of the colony instead of losing them by the thousands to the United States.

 

The image of their own citizens joining thousands of Europeans in settling the old American northwest lingered in Canadian minds for decades.  They set out to duplicate that earlier American experience with colonial unification being a prelude to annexing the northern plains. Immigration policy was the means to settling the region between Winnipeg and the Rocky Mountains. 

 

Canada’s annexation of Rupertsland was part of an evolving development strategy which the new northern dominion effectively borrowed from the United States.  High tariffs, internal improvements including railroad development, and the encouragement of immigration were all key elements of American economic strategy before Canada adopted them, and called it a “National Policy.”  Canada’s intent was always to remain a separate economic and political entity in North America, but that did not preclude copying the effective American way of reaching that goal.  

 

Kathy Sherrell, “In Search of Home: Negotiating the Legal and Economic Barriers to Housing”. Department of Geography. University of British Columbia.

 

The cost of housing has been rising in Canada, relative to household income levels, especially over the past decade (Moore and Skaburbskis 2004, Murdie 2004, Bunting et al. 2004). The proclivity of newcomers to concentrate in large urban centres – which are the most expensive housing markets in the country– means that immigrants are particularly exposed to housing affordability problems. Recent research in Canada has documented something of the scale of this issue, showing that, upon arrival, many immigrants experience economic disadvantage, marked by lower incomes and higher poverty levels (Picot 2004, Picot and Hou 2003, Ley and Smith 2001, Smith 2004). In other words, recent immigrants face the difficult situation of reconciling below-average incomes with above-average housing prices. But the category of ‘immigrant’ is too broad, and contains many sub-groups. Those who have entered Canada as refugees, through government or private sponsorship, or as refugee claimants, face the greatest challenges in acquiring sufficient income for adequate housing.

This paper will present results from a recently completed study on the housing trajectories of government-assisted refugees and refugee claimants in two Canadian cities: Winnipeg and Vancouver. Through consideration of the housing trajectories of government-assisted refugees and refugee claimants this research considers what effect legal status – and by extension the rights and services to which people have access – have on their ability to obtain adequate and affordable housing.

Kathy Sherrell* and Silvia D’Addario^ “On the Outside Looking In: The precarious Housing Situations of Successful Refugee Claimants in the GVRD”. *Department of Geography, University of British Columbia; ^ Department of Geography, York University.

 

Access to affordable and adequate housing is a key step in the successful integration of newcomers.  While some immigrants are able to transition into homeownership quite rapidly, other newcomers are finding it increasing difficult to access basic shelter.  There is little systematic knowledge about the extent of homelessness among immigrants and refugees in Greater Vancouver. This paper details the findings of a 2005 study entitled The Profile of Absolute and Relative Homelessness Among Immigrants, Refugees, and Refugee Claimants in the GVRD.   We highlight the extent to which some newcomers are increasingly at risk of hidden homelessness, a term that describes precarious and unstable housing experiences.  This paper also details the unique housing experiences of refugee claimants.  Given their temporary legal status, claimants often face the most tenuous experiences in the housing market.  Their experiences are often marked by poor residential conditions, crowding and high rent to income ratios.

 

Lahra Smith, “Democratic Governance in a Multiethnic State: Minorities and Majorities in Ethiopia”. African Studies Program. Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. Georgetown University.

 

Ethiopia is an important example of the challenges and possibilities of democratic governance in multiethnic states.  After decades of a nation-building strategy which emphasized centralization and assimilation, in the early 1990s the country embarked on an experiment with federalism and decentralization that was explicitly organized along ethnic lines.  Ethiopia’s constitutional and institutional reforms were wide-ranging and controversial, both within the country and internationally.  A centralized, assimilationist model of nation-building in the context of tremendous socio-cultural and religious diversity and structural inequality was altered.  Formally, what emerged was a multiethnic, decentralized and pluralist vision of citizenship.  Radical social reforms were to be made, most prominently the granting of self-determination rights, including the right to secession, for ethnic communities.  Through this, majorities and minorities alike have been impacted.  In Ethiopia historically marginalized groups are both numerical majorities (for example, the Oromo) and minorities, and their contribution to the political and social life of the country has been a source of tension.  Today it appears that the state’s vision of citizenship diverges from the local one, which is typically formed in homogenous ethnic and religious communities and by citizens lacking access to basic information on democracy or the contours of the 1995 Constitution.  This paper will assess the strengths and challenges present in so-called ethnic federalism in Ethiopia, focusing particularly on the policy areas of language policy and citizen education.

 

Vladislav B. Sotirovic, “Cultural Unity In/Vs Diversity?: The Case Study of European Union”. European Humanities University-International & Vilnius University.

 

Speaking about globalization, economics comes in the first place. Politics comes next, and cultural aspects seem only to get what remains of the attention. In this paper I am analyzing how well European Union is taking care of what it claims to. Unity in Diversity is the slogan, the cultural policy, that EU is stating to lead. Unfortunately, reality is of a different kind. Samuel  P. Huntingtons’ theory of Clash of Civilizations seems to work perfectly, because opening all geographic and cultural borders catalyze cultural mixture and cultural conflicts both in multicultural societies and between different states in Europe. Besides, the older and more influential member- states feel like not always to obey common rules and often fail in making their own citizens to do that. In this way small nations get trapped in cultural mix without possibility to get out or preserve their own culture properly. Cultural face of Europe, that we are so proud of changes dramatically. The question remains: when is situation going to be changed if is at all? 
 

Livianna Tossutti, “A Typology of Urban Approaches to Immigration and Diversity”. Department of Political Science, St. Catherine’s College.


While immigration policy is a national matter, the process of immigrant settlement and integration is local. Nearly two-thirds of all immigrants to Canada live in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal, and an additional 15 percent live in second-tier cities.  Since more responsibilities for service delivery have been turned over to municipalities, it is increasingly important to understand local government approaches to the integration of immigrant and minority populations.

 

As theoretical models have been developed to describe variations in national approaches to citizenship and the economic, social and political integration of immigrants, this paper will develop a typology of local government responses to immigration and cultural diversity in six first and second-tier Canadian cities, and two cities that have emerged as attractive destinations for newcomers.  It will review how cities conceive of integration by examining city mission statements, the political/consultative and administrative structures they establish to respond to immigration and diversity, the policies, programs and services designed to service a diverse population, and the financial resources devoted to these initiatives (where these data are available). 

 

The descriptive analysis will be supplemented by a consideration of some factors that may account for similarities and variations in local responses, including: provincial legislation, policies, funding, and agreements with the federal government; the local historical context; and the attitudes of local political and administrative elites, and civil society stakeholders. The paper will draw on varied data sources such as Official statistics and documents, personal interviews, and survey data to develop the typology.

 

Henry Trachtenberg, “Jews, Social Democrats, Liberals, and Communists: Abraham Albert Heaps, The Jewish Community of Winnipeg, and the Federal Election of 1935 in Winnipeg North”.  Historical Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage and Tourism

 

This paper examines the political relationship between Abraham Albert Heaps, the incumbent Independent Labor Party Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (ILP-CCF) Member of Parliament (MP) for Winnipeg North and the Winnipeg Jewish community, about 90% of whom then lived in the North End of Winnipeg. This will be undertaken via an analysis of the federal election campaign of 1935 in Winnipeg North. The Communist (Workers') Party of Canada (CPC), angry that the CCF under James Shaver Woodsworth and its predecessor the ILP had rejected a "common front", decided to target Heaps, one of three Jewish MP's, by running the party's leader, Tim Buck, against him. This only reinforced the already existing acrimonious relationship between Heaps and the CPC, one that had been festering for some time. The Liberal Party, which did not run a candidate in 1926 and 1930, did so in 1935, nominating Colonel Charles S. Booth. The campaign was not only partisan and passionate, but also a bitterly contested fight especially between the Social Democrats and Communists. For the socially and economically marginalized Winnipeg Jewish community, the majority of whom were immigrants or the children of immigrants, the election occurred not only at a time of extreme distress because of the social and economic dislocations which flowed out of the Great Depression, but also at a time of continuous anxiety caused by the virulent Jew-hatred of Nazi Germany and the dire situation of its Jewry, and the deteriorating physical, legal , social, and economic conditions of Jews in central and eastern Europe, including the Soviet Union. Just as importantly, this was also a time of increased manifestations of anti-Semitism at the national and local levels in Canada. Given the potential life and death nature of Canadian immigration and refugee policies for their European co-religionists, open-door immigration was a central issue for Jewish electors, and Winnipeg Jewry was alarmed by sentiments voiced in favour of, and the actions taken by, the Canadian government and its officials to achieve restricted immigration. All of these issues and developments permeated the campaign.
 

Marc Vachon and Wes Toews, “A Geography of the Filipino Migration to Winnipeg”. University of Winnipeg.

 

Immigration has played a defining role in the history and geography of Canadian cities.  From its origins as a settler colony, the country has always been defined in terms of immigration and ethnic diversity, though these features have not always been popularly recognized.  Filipino migrants are one of the many groups that have not been widely studied, in a large part because of their relatively recent arrival to Canada.  Winnipeg, because of its large Filipino population in relation to its total population, is a focal point of Filipino settlement in Canada.

This project studies the unique socioeconomic and spatial properties of the Filipino population in Winnipeg.  These properties can be considered unique amongst the overall Canadian immigrant population as well as the general Canadian Filipino population.  Kinship networks, national and provincial immigration policy, and occupational segmentation of the Filipino population in Winnipeg have created trajectories of settlement separate from the national picture.  At the same time, the same processes affecting the Filipino population can affect different ethnic groups, and understanding these processes can offset a number of misconceptions of immigrant settlement in Canada.

 

 Lori Wilkinson, Ethnic Identity, Inclusion and Canadian heritage: Observations of Youth in a Mid-sized Canadian City”. Department of Sociology. University of Manitoba.

 

School is one site where youth internalize major social values while shaping their own identities. An examination of youth in the educational environment and the curriculum to which they are exposed will assist researchers in understanding how identity is formed. This presentation answers two questions: 1) what aspects and characteristics shape the identity of Canadian youth? 2) Does the school curriculum support varied aspects of identity, particularly in relation to international affairs and the varied identities of their student body? Our evidence suggests that school curriculum may require additional support to address identity and diversity. Using various theoretical perspective and constructs, we argue the need to move from simple tolerance/acceptance of newcomers in Canada (associated with multiculturalism and predominant within existing curriculum guides) to engagement with ethnic, religious, national and other forms of diversity. Our data, collected using a variety of qualitative techniques, demonstrates that youth exhibit great diversity in expression of ethnic and other identities, but the current school curriculum is lagging behind, focusing too narrowly on Canada and multiculturalism. Students’ responses to a number of research activities with regard to their identity formation and their opinions about multiculturalism, diversity, and world events are used to understand the characteristics of their identities. The Manitoba Geography and Social Studies curriculums are examined to support these claims. Our research is based on a three-year study following a cohort of high school students through Grades 10-12.

 

Stefan Wolejszo, “Lethal Identities: War Criminals in Canada”. Department of Sociology. University of Manitoba.

 

In the mid-1970’s media accounts drew attention to the possibility that hundreds of perpetrators of the Holocaust had found sanctuary in Canada. In response to such allegations the government of Canada has continually stressed that Canada is not a safe haven for individuals who have engaged in war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. In 1986 the Deschênes Commission found that several suspected war criminals did, in fact, succeed in entered into the country, and have become naturalized Canadian citizens. Since that time, measures such as denaturalization/deportation, extradition, and criminal charges have been applied to varying degrees to deal with such individuals.  This paper will outline how the Immigration Act and Criminal Code of Canada have been utilized, and amended, over the past 20 years in an effort to deal with war criminals who have entered into the country.

 

Doris Wolf, “Coming to Terms with the Past in Three Canadian Works of Fiction by the Descendants of German Immigrants to Canada”. Department of English. University of Winnipeg.

 

In the past few years a number of books taking up issues of German-Canadian Vergangenheitsbewältigung (coming to terms with the past) have appeared on the Canadian literary scene. This paper focuses on three examples written by authors who were born in the 1960s and 70s and are the descendants of German immigrants to Canada:  Dennis Bock’s short story cycle Olympia (1998), Suzette Mayr’s postmodernist novel The Widows (1998), and Laura Elise Taylor’s memoir A Taste for Paprika (2004). Although all the books depict three generations of post-WWII German-Canadians, they focus on the youngest generation and how it grapples to understand Germany's and its own families' Nazi pasts.  In each book, the process of Vergangenheitsbewältigung for this generation, who are the children of postwar German immigrants, is portrayed as a complex negotiation of a number of factors, including the protagonist’s experiences of being “German-Canadian,” the kinds of war memories passed on by parents and grandparents, and the nature of the protagonist’s relationship to the grandparent(s) who came of age or was an adult in the Third Reich. As this group of works highlights, there is/was no single or simple way of coming to terms with the past but that the process is crucial to the protagonist’s own coming of age in the Canadian context.