Saturday, April 3, 2021

Right-wing extremism in Canada


racism xenophobia anti-semitism Canada books fascism Nazi white supremacy

Barbara Perry and Ryan Scrivens contend that there have been too few attempts by academics to systematically analyze the ideologies and activities of right-wing extremists in Canada, resulting in a paucity of books and monographs on this important topic.

“There can be little doubt, then, that a theoretically informed contemporary assessment is needed,” they believe.

Perry, a professor at the faculty of social science and humanities at the University of Ontario’s Institute of Technology, and Scrivens, an assistant professor at Michigan State University’s School of Criminal Justice, fill the gap quite deftly in Right-Wing Extremism in Canada, a scholarly volume published by Palgrave Macmillan and dedicated to all those who “challenge hatred.”

Their book implicitly challenges the rosy misconception that Canada has always been and still is a tolerant multicultural haven attuned to racial, ethnic and religious diversity. Certainly, this is the image that Canada prefers to project, and to some degree it is an accurate one.

But as the authors correctly point out early in their informative and wide-ranging work, Canada has come a long way from the days when it was a tight-assed Anglo-Saxon and French bastion of intolerance, racism and antisemitism.

During the 1920s, anti-Catholic, anti-immigration and racist sentiment was widespread in this country, judging by the emergence of the Ku Klux Klan and the activities of the Orange Order. In the decade to follow, antisemitic organizations such as the Toronto Swastika Club, the National Social Christian Party and the Canadian Union of Fascists were established and extremists like Adrien Arcand and John Ross Taylor attracted followers.

Lest we forget, the 1933 Christie Pitts riot in Toronto underscored the extent to which antisemitism flourished in Canada.  (more...)

Right-wing extremism in Canada

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