My Life in Canada

By Anthony Stewart  

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Canada’s next major challenge is not economic or political. It’s ethical. On the issue of racism, Canadians tend to compare themselves favourably to Americans and to rely on a concession that Canadian racism, if it exists at all, is more “subtle.” Is there a future time when newcomers and visible minorities will be enabled to feel like they belong in Canada? Or will they have to accept their experience as visitors to Canada no matter how long they have lived here? These are some of the questions Anthony Stewart tackles eloquently and with considerable wit.

“As a Black Canadian, the Canada that I have come to see is different from the idealized Canada of Tim Hortons commercials, Hockey Night in Canada and countless other imaginings. It’s a Canada that takes credit for a level of open-mindedness that far exceeds its reality. It’s a Canada that distinguishes itself for its population of citizens who passively lay claim to welcoming difference while staying silent when those around them who are in fact different are disenfranchised, dehumanized, undervalued and left to feel that we do not belong in the country in which many of us were born, or about which we are told tales of tolerance.” – Anthony Stewart

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  • Preface:  Home
  • Introduction: A Little Sunlight
  • Starting From Where We Are
  • Colour-Blindness vs. Tone-Deafness, Or, Not Being Seen vs. Not Being Heard
  • Conclusion: Some Things Worth Trying
  • Advice to Visitors
  • Advice to Members


  • Anthony Stewart

    Dalhousie University

    Anthony Stewart is a professor in the English Department at Bucknell University. His main research interest is twentieth-century African American literature and culture. He has articles accepted or in print on the work of August Wilson, Ralph Ellison, and Percival Everett, as well as “The Professional Sports Shell Game: A Black Canadian’s Reflections on Twentieth-Century American Sports History.” Dr. Stewart also teaches twentieth-century British literature and is the author of two articles on the work of George Orwell and of George Orwell, Doubleness and the Value of Decency. Dr. Stewart is at work on a book-length project on the work of Percival Everett as well as an article speculating on how the African American narrative might be changed-with the election of Barack Obama-from one that has long relied upon sports as a source of role models to one that would include images of public service.

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