Populism, Polarization and Power in the New Saskatchewan

edited by JoAnn Jaffe, Patricia W. Elliott and Cora Sellers  

Divided is a collection of essays that offers multiple windows into the origins and impacts of the current state of populism and hyper-partisanship in Saskatchewan and beyond.

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  • October 2021
  • ISBN: 9781773634807
  • 352 pages
  • $35.00
  • For sale worldwide
  • EPUB October 2021
  • ISBN: 9781773634968
  • $34.99
  • For sale worldwide
  • PDF October 2021
  • ISBN: 9781773634975
  • $34.99
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About the book

Divided looks at the last fifteen years in Saskatchewan, during which time the Saskatchewan Party government sought to reforge the province’s image into the New Saskatchewan: brash, materialistic, highly competitive and aggressively partisan. In the process, a climate of polarization and hyper-partisanship swept the province into a near-perpetual state of anger and social division. These actions are not without consequences. In Divided, diverse voices describe the impact on their lives and communities when simmering wedge issues burst open on social media and in public spaces. The collection dives deep into the long set-up to this moment, from the colonial past to the four decades of neoliberal economics that have widened social and economic gaps across all sectors. Divided positions Saskatchewan as a fascinating case study of the global trends of division and provides testament to the resiliency of a vision of social solidarity against all odds.

Canadian Studies Class Inequality Indigenous Resistance & Decolonization


JoAnn Jaffe

JoAnn Jaffe is a professor of Sociology and Social Studies at the University of Regina.

Patricia W. Elliott

Patricia W. Elliott teaches journalism at the University of Regina and First Nations University of Canada and is a faculty advisor to the Institute for Investigative Journalism at Concordia.

Cora Sellers

Cora Sellers has worked in the area of community development and advocacy in Regina, specifically focusing on Indigenous social and economic issues, for twenty years.


  • Preface:Spoiled Harvest: Sowing Division on the Canadian Prairie (Patricia W. Elliott, JoAnn Jaffe and Cora Sellers)
  • Part 1: Culture Wars
  • The Stories We Tell and the Stories We Silence: Myths of a “Neighbourly” Province (Brenda Macdougall)
  • “Make the Energy Sector Great Again”: Extractive Populism in Saskatchewan (Emily Eaton and Simon Enoch)
  • “Those People Don’t Vote for Us”: The Film Tax Credit and the Saskatchewan Divide (Leslea Mair)
  • The Hard Part: The Erasure of Queer and Trans Experiences in an Online Debate about Male-Only Barbershops (Evie Johnny Ruddy)
  • Which Side Are You On?: Between Yellow Vests and Migrant Rights in the New Saskatchewan (Andrew Stevens)
  • Part 2: Fraying the Fabric
  • Not Your Grandparents’ Rural Saskatchewan (JoAnn Jaffe And Amy Quark)
  • “If They Don’t Farm It, They Should Not Own It”: Land Investments and the Divisions of Farming (Birgit Müller)
  • The Suburbanization of Saskatchewan Politics (Ken Rasmussen)
  • Cutting the Lifeline: Shuttering the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (Cindy Hanson and JoAnn Jaffe)
  • Divide and Conquer: The Sask Party Defunding of the Northern Teacher Education Program and Northern Professional Access Colleges (April ChiefCalf)
  • What’s Wrong with Corporatizing Saskatchewan’s Universities? Plenty! (Claire Polster and Janice Newson, with Patricia W. Elliott)
  • Disability Doesn’t Discriminate: But Programs and Policies Do (Terri Sleeva)
  • Division and Privilege in Our Advocacy (Cora Sellers)
  • Part 3: Power Plays
  • The Politics of Power: A Wanton Attack on a Citizen’s Reputation (William (Bill) Bonner)
  • Power Beyond Account: Saskatchewan Child Welfare vs. Human Dignity (Tim Korol)
  • The Erosion of Workers’ Rights in Saskatchewan: The Sask Party, Labour Law Reform and Organized Labour, 2007–2020 (Charles Smith and Andrew Stevens)
  • Who Killed the Public Surgery Centre? (Cheryl Stadnichuk)
  • Public-Private Partnerships: What Counts as Evidence of Claimed Value? (William (Bill) Bonner and Morina Rennie)
  • From Big Bad Wolf to Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: The Uranium Industry Manipulates its Image to Stay Afloat and Faces Resistance Along the Way (Don Kossick)
  • Part 4: A Fighting Chance
  • Writing a New Song: Creating Conversations through Theatre (Joel Bernbaum and Yvette Nolan)
  • Challenging Hate and Discrimination with Awareness and Dialogue (Islamic Circle of North America Sisters Regina)
  • Study War No More: The Campaign Against Military Training in Saskatchewan High Schools, 2014–2015 (Florence Stratton)
  • For the Love of Matthew (Christopher Campbell Gardiner, with Shannon Berard-Gardiner)
  • It’s Time to Save the Prairie: Against a Bleak Climate Future, Our Grasslands Offer Hope (Katie Doke-Sawatzky)
  • We Want a Future: Climate Change and How the Youth are Fighting to Save the Province (Sydney Chadwick)
  • Index


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