Politics & labour

1096 A master of urban politics

Outside In: A Political Memoir by Libby Davies Toronto: Between The Lines, 2019 $26.95 / 9781771134453 Reviewed by Alex Netherton * Libby Davies’ Outside In is an extraordinary political memoir that chronicles and reflects upon her life and political career first as an urban activist and then eventually as the Deputy Leader of the NDP…
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1095 Gulf Islands iniquity

As if They Were the Enemy: The Dispossession of Japanese Canadians on Saltspring Island by Brian Smallshaw Victoria: University of Victoria, 2020 $24.95  /  9781550586671 (available at UVic bookstore for $24.95 plus shipping costs, or direct from b@pixelmap.ca for $26.00 including postage) Reviewed by Marie Elliott * Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, December…
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1093 The militant mothers of Raymur

ESSAY: The Militant Mothers: Civil Disobedience in Raymur Housing Project by Meg Stainsby * The 1971 actions of the “Militant Mothers of Raymur” was one of the first direct action campaigns in Vancouver history. The successful, swift campaign ran from early January through late March. It has been documented and celebrated in newspaper and radio…
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1091 In praise of city neighbourhoods

Battleground Grandview: An Activist’s Memoir of the Grandview Community Plan, 2011-2016 by Jak King Vancouver, The Drive Press, 2020 $25.00 / 9780986778209 Reviewed by Jennifer Chutter * Planning for housing in Vancouver is a contentious issue due to conflicting ideas of where increased density should take place, what styles of housing are needed, and who…
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1077 Life beneath the streets

The Rat People: A Journey through Beijing’s Forbidden Underground by Patrick Saint-Paul, translated by David Homel Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2020 $19.95 / 9781551528038 Reviewed by May Q Wong * In The Rat People: A Journey through Beijing’s Forbidden Underground, veteran foreign correspondent Patrick Saint-Paul exposes how Beijing’s, and indeed China’s, explosive growth has been…
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1059 Tribute to Beverley McLachlin

Beverley McLachlin: The Legacy of a Supreme Court Chief Justice by Ian Greene and Peter McCormick Toronto: James Lorimer & Company, 2019 $29.95 / 9781459414402 * Truth Be Told: The Story of My Life and My Fight for Equality by Beverley McLachlin Toronto: Simon & Schuster, 2020 $24.95 / 9781982104979 Both books reviewed by May…
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1056 Beijing in Canada

Claws of the Panda: Beijing’s Campaign of Influence and Intimidation in Canada by Jonathan Manthorpe Toronto: Cormorant Books, 2019 $24.95 / 9781770865396 Reviewed by Trevor Carolan * Book-length critiques of our national failures of nerve and vision seldom make easy reading. Drug use policies, Quebec-ROC relations, Indigenous reconciliation, housing and environmental issues — on and…
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1040 An East Kootenay setting

Chapter One: The Historical Background: The East Kootenay in the late Nineteenth Century by Brenda Callaghan * Editor’s note: we are pleased to present Chapter 1 of Brenda Callaghan’s hitherto unpublished biography, Frederick Paget Norbury, Remittance Man or Gentleman Immigrant? The Story of an Englishman in Canada, the introduction of which we published on January…
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1038 Welcome to the sacrifice zone

All Fracked Up! The costs of LNG to British Columbia by Alice de Wolff and Delores Broten (editors) Comox: Watershed Sentinel Books, 2020 $30.00 / 9780995328655 Reviewed by John Gellard * “What are you reading?” asked a highly educated neighbour. “A book about fracking,” “What’s fracking?” “How do you heat your house?” “With natural gas.”…
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1036 Kootenay Doukhobor family saga

Our Backs Warmed By the Sun: Memories of a Doukhobor Life by Vera Maloff Halfmoon Bay, Caitlin Press, 2020 $24.95 / 9781773860398 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Doukhobor Diaspora: A family oral history offers an antidote to past misunderstandings about the Russian sect When I was in my teens, a terrible explosion rocked my West…
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1034 Women trailblazing in politics

Doing Politics Differently? Women Premiers in Canada’s Provinces and Territories by Sylvia Bashevkin (editor) Vancouver: UBC Press, 2019 $34.95 / 9780774860819 Reviewed by Barbara J. Messamore * Do women “do politics differently?” Not so much. That said, it is not at all clear that we need even ask the question “is it worth electing more…
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1021 Canadian science on Easter Island

Stanley’s Dream: The Medical Expedition to Easter Island by Jacalyn Duffin Montréal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2019 $39.95 / 9780773557109 Reviewed by Colin Levings * Stanley’s Dream, Jacalyn Duffin’s book on the 1964-65 Medical Expedition to Easter Island (METEI) is an intriguing detailed compendium, retrospective analysis, and overall fascinating story of one of Canada’s…
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1006 Three bad bills of 1983

Tranquility Lost: The Occupation of Tranquille & Battle for Community Care in BC by Gary Steeves Gibsons, Nightwood Editions, 2020 $21.95 / 9780889713864 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Three bad bills revisited: BC’s Operation Solidarity and the attack on public services in the early 1980s. Being on a picket line, protesting in the street, or…
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