Book Search

  • Topic: Public Policy
  • About Canada: Disability Rights

    By Deborah Stienstra     March 2012

    Through a close examination of employment, education, transportation, telecommunications and health care, About Canada: Disability Rights explores the landscape of disability rights in Canada and finds that, while important advances have been made, Canadians with disabilities still experience significant barriers in obtaining their human rights. Using the stories and voices of people with disabilities, Deborah Stienstra argues that disability is not about “faulty” bodies that need to be fixed, but about the institutional, cultural and attitudinal reactions to certain kinds of bodies, and that neoliberal ideas of independence and individualism are at the heart of the continuing discrimination against “disabled” people. Stienstra contends that achieving disability rights is possible, but not through efforts to “fix” certain kinds of bodies. Rather it can be achieved through universal design, disability supports, social and economic supports and belonging – in short, through foundational social transformation of Canadian society.

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  • Shaping an Agenda for Atlantic Canada

    Edited by John G. Reid and Donald J.  Savoie     September 2011

    Atlantic Canada stands at a crossroads. Slow population growth, political marginalization, an aging population and fiscal stress are among the most urgent issues. Faced with this reality, Atlantic Canadians must find a new way forward. Shaping an Agenda for Atlantic Canada offers the perspectives of authors from a variety of disciplines reflecting on historical and contemporary themes relevant to the future. The goal is not to offer glib diagnoses or instant solutions but rather to identify considerations that would enable Atlantic Canadians to shape an agenda. Re-examining key elements of the past is an essential starting point. Equally important is a contemporary analysis of the nature of those challenges. Through these complementary approaches,this book seeks to assist Atlantic Canadians in designing a road map leading into the future.

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  • About Canada: Media

    By Peter Steven     September 2011

    Canada enjoys a long-held reputation for producing high-quality media, from National Film Board documentaries to the CBC to children’s programming. But in recent years, funding cuts, commercial media concentration and a sour political environment have been steadily eroding this reputation. In About Canada: Media, Peter Steven examines developments in film, television, the internet and newspapers and finds that the quality of our news and entertainment media is steadily declining, as well as becoming increasingly restricted and less diverse. Although Canada is not alone in this crisis of quality, we are particularly vulnerable living in the shadow of the United States. However, despite this decline and the shadow of our southern neighbour, Canada still produces distinctive and popular work, which receives critical international acclaim. About Canada: Media explores all things CanCon and argues that the Canadian people must reclaim the media from elite interests in order to ensure its democratic and quality future.

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  • About Canada: Queer Rights

    By Peter Knegt     September 2011

    Is Canada a “queer utopia”? Canada was the fourth country in the world – and the first in the Western Hemisphere – to legalize same-sex marriage. Queer people in Canada enjoy many of the same legal rights as heterosexuals, and social acceptance of homosexuality has grown exponentially. But are these the goals that queer activists hoped to achieve? Is this legal regulation and normalization of homosexuality what the lesbian and gay liberation movement of the early 1970s fought for? Using the origins of this movement as a starting point, About Canada: Queer Rights examines the history of the struggle for queer rights in Canada to create a better understanding of the present. What Peter Knegt finds is that Canada’s queer people are as diverse and multicultural as Canada itself – they are not easily generalized and have most certainly not achieved equality.

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  • About Canada: Children & Youth

    By Bernard Schissel     March 2011

    Canada is a signatory on the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of the Child, which guarantees the protection and care of children and youth. About Canada: Children and Youth examines each of the rights within the Canadian context – and finds Canada wanting. Schissel argues that although our expressed desire is to protect and care for our children, the reality is that young people, in Canada and around the world, often lack basic human rights. The lives of young people are steeped in abuse from the education and justice systems, exploitation by corporations, ill health and poverty. And while the hearts of Canadians go out to youth in distant countries suffering under oppressive circumstances, those same hearts often have little sympathy for the suffering of youth, particularly disadvantaged youth, within Canada. This book explores our contradictory views and argues that we must do more to ensure that the rights of the child are upheld.

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  • False Positive

    Private Profit in Canada’s Medical Laboratories

    By Ross Sutherland     February 2011

    When your doctor takes a blood sample for analysis, where does it go? Does it find its way to your local, publicly owned hospital? Does it take a longer journey to a private, for-profit lab in the next city? Chances are, you’ve never given it a lot of thought. In this daring exposé of the laboratory system, Sutherland investigates its historical and contemporary development in Canada and argues that the landscape has been heavily influenced by the private, for-profit companies – to the detriment of the public health care system.

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  • About Canada: Immigration

    By Nupur Gogia and Bonnie Slade     February 2011

    Many Canadians believe that immigrants steal jobs away from qualified Canadians, abuse the healthcare system and refuse to participate in Canadian culture. In About Canada: Immigration, Gogia and Slade challenge these myths with a thorough investigation of the realities of immigrating to Canada. Examining historical immigration policies, the authors note that these policies were always fundamentally racist, favouring whites, unless hard labourers were needed. Although current policies are no longer explicitly racist, they do continue to favour certain kinds of applicants. Many recent immigrants to Canada are highly trained and educated professionals, and yet few of them, contrary to the myth, find work in their area of expertise. Despite the fact that these experts could contribute significantly to Canadian society, deeply ingrained racism, suspicion and fear keep immigrants out of these jobs. On the other hand, Canada also requires construction workers, nannies and agricultural workers – but few immigrants who do this work qualify for citizenship. About Canada: Immigration argues that we need to move beyond the myths and build an immigration policy that meets the needs of Canadian society.

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  • About Canada: Animal Rights

    By John Sorenson     March 2010

    Adopting Mahatma Gandhi’s idea that “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated,” this book considers the status of animals in Canada. Casting a critical gaze over how dominant ideologies, such as capitalism and patriarchy, have negatively impacted our relationships with the natural world, Sorenson examines the institutional exploitation of animals in agriculture, fashion and entertainment. Addressing the fur trade, seal hunt, Calgary Stampede, puppy mills, horse slaughter and Canada’s virtually unregulated vivisection industry, the book analyzes discourses used by animal-exploitation industries to defend their practices and suggests that a society that claims to protect animals while maintaining antiquated laws is suffering from “moral schizophrenia.” This book advocates an abolitionist agenda, promotes veganism as a personal and political commitment, shows the economic, environmental and health costs of animal exploitation and presents animal rights as a social justice issue.

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  • Ontario Works–Works for Whom?

    An Investigation of Workfare in Ontario

    By Julie Vaillancourt     February 2010

    This book is an institutional ethnographic investigation of the Ontario Works program and the problems that it creates in the lives of people on social assistance. Ontario Works is a work-for-welfare program that was implemented in Ontario in 1996 as part of the neoliberal restructuring of the welfare state. The book shows that Ontario Works has not, in reality, been used to help people on assistance and rather has been used as another means of facilitating an attack on them, while providing subsidized and cheap labour for companies and social agencies.

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  • Punched Drunk

    Alcohol, Surveillance and the LCBO 1927–1975

    By Gary Genosko and Scott Thompson     October 2009

    In this critical study of the Liquor Control Board of Ontario, Scott Thompson and Gary Genosko expose the stakes and consequences of the enormous bureaucracy behind the administrative surveillance of alcohol consumption in Ontario. Since its inception in 1927, the LCBO subjected alcohol consumption to its disciplinary gaze and generated knowledge about the drinking population. This book details how the LCBO tracked all alcohol consumption and capitalized on technological advances in order to generate categories and profiles of individuals so they could “control” drinking in the province. While this is a historical project, it also investigates how categorical treatment of populations like First Nations helped to develop and foster stereo-types around addiction that persist to this day.

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