Articles on Racism

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The 1947 and 1956 editions of the ‘Green Book,’ which was published to advise black motorists where they should – and shouldn’t – frequent during their travels. Image on the left: Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division, The New York Public Library. Image on right: Courtesy of the South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, S.C.

‘Traveling while black’ guidebooks may be out of print, but still resonate today

From the 1930s to the 1960s, 'The Negro Motorist's Green Book' and 'Travelguide: Vacation and Recreation Without Humiliation' offered African-American roadtrippers lists of black-friendly businesses.
Quebec theatre director Robert Lepage’s play SLĀV was cancelled in Montreal after accusations of racial insensitivity because it featured few Black actors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

‘I don’t see race’ and other white lies

A recent controversy surrounding Québec director Robert Lepage has had some people claiming to be colour-blind when in comes to race. But nothing could be further from the truth.
Trail of Tears, a painting of a scene in Golconda, illinois. First Nations were forcefully displaced in huge numbers throughout America. Kevin Schraer

In Trump’s America, immigrants are modern-day ‘savage Indians’

The leader of the United States has made immigrants the new face of a threatening “Other,” a primitive savage who has many of the features of the "Indians" of the American frontier myth.
Activists protest in Barcelona, Spain on June 21, 2018. A Spanish court triggered a new wave of outrage by granting bail to five men acquitted of gang rape and convicted instead on a lesser felony of sexual abuse, a case that has shocked Spain. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)

Rethinking the penalties for rape

Germaine Greer's recent comments about the punishments for rape show the need for more complex, evidence-based discussions about trauma and the criminal justice system.
Aug. 12, 2017: white nationalist demonstrators use shields as they guard the entrance to Lee Park in Charlottesville, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

The 100-year-old rallying cry of ‘white genocide’

White supremacists push an agenda that have their followers believing they are in danger of extinction. But their 'race suicide' ideas are based on 100-year-old unscientific and racist research.
Pro-tolerance march in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2015. Phil Roeder/Flickr

The predicament of diversity: re-boot for diversity 3.0

Diversity is an enormously appealing and powerful concept, yet it can also distract us from the focus we need to face today’s pressing social issues. So what’s the way forward?
What are your in-groups and out-groups? ksenia_bravo/Shutterstock.com

Why our brains see the world as ‘us’ versus ‘them’

Our neural circuits lead us to find comfort in those like us and unease with those who differ, resulting in a battle between reward and distrust. But these brain connections aren't the end of the story.
Children listen to speakers during an immigration family separation protest in Phoenix, Arizona. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Trump’s act of state terrorism against children

Donald Trump's policy to separate children from their migrant parents lays bare his fascism. The time has come for Americans to resist this act of domestic terrorism.
Names of lynching victims at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Ala. AP/Brynn Anderson

How to heal African-Americans’ traumatic history

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice helps demonstrate that the lynching of black people was not the fault of victims. But telling this history risks re-traumatizing the black community.
Rapper Drake watches the action at an NBA game in Toronto in 2016. A recent battle between Drake and Pusha-T brought the issue of blackface back into the headlines. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

The problem with blackface

Is blackface ever innocent? Is it less racist when a Black person enacts it as a statement of resistance? Because of our history of deep and ongoing racism in Canada, the answer is no.

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