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Article

War Measures Act

The War Measures Act was a federal law adopted by Parliament on 22 August 1914, after the beginning of the First World War. It gave broad powers to the Canadian government to maintain security and order during “war, invasion or insurrection.” It was used, controversially, to suspend the civil liberties of people in Canada who were considered “enemy aliens” during both world wars. This led to mass arrests and detentions without charges or trials. The War Measures Act was also invoked in Quebec during the 1970 October Crisis. The Act was repealed and replaced by the more limited Emergencies Act in 1988.

Article

Poverty

About nine per cent of Canadians live in poverty, although the percentage is generally higher among certain groups such as single mothers and Aboriginal people. Low-income Canadians include the "working poor" — those with jobs — and the "welfare poor" — those relying mainly on government assistance.

Article

Indigenous Suffrage

From the colonial era to the present, the Canadian electoral system has evolved in ways that have affected Indigenous suffrage (the right to vote in public elections). Voting is a hallmark of Canadian citizenship, but not all Indigenous groups (particularly status Indians) have been given this historic right due to political, socio-economic and ethnic restrictions. Today, Canada’s Indigenous peoples — defined in Section 35 (2) of the Constitution Act, 1982 as Indians (First Nations), Métis and Inuit — can vote in federal, provincial, territorial and local elections.

Article

Lobbying in Canada

Lobbying is the process through which individuals and groups articulate their interests to federal, provincial or municipal governments to influence public policy or government decision-making. Lobbyists may be paid third parties who communicate on behalf of their clients; or they may be employees of a corporation or organization seeking to influence the government. Because of the possibility for conflict of interest, lobbying is the subject of much public scrutiny. At the federal level, lobbying activities are governed by the Lobbying Act. Provinces and municipalities have their own lobbying laws and by-laws.

Macleans

Air India Trial Ends in Acquittal

This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on March 28, 2005. Partner content is not updated.

"IN THE EARLY morning hours of June 23, 1985, two bomb-laden suitcases detonated half a world apart," began B.C. Supreme Court Justice Ian Bruce Josephson, reading a verdict that set two men free and left hundreds more shackled to a 20-year-old tragedy that now seems beyond hope of resolution.

Article

Robertine Barry (Françoise)

Robertine Barry (pen name: Françoise), journalist, publisher, author and feminist (born 26 February 1863 in L’Isle-Verte, Canada East; died 7 January 1910 in Montréal, Québec). The first French-Canadian woman journalist, she was also a founding member of the Fédération nationale Saint-Jean-Baptiste and the first vice-president of the Canadian Women’s Press Club.

Article

Reserves in Quebec

There are 30 reserves in Quebec, held by 25 First Nations. In addition, there are 15 Inuit, 9 Cree and 1 Naskapi community whose lands fall under the jurisdiction of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement and the Northeastern Quebec Agreement. Because they are not governed by the Indian Act, these communities are technically not reserves. There are also five First Nations in Quebec that do not have reserve lands (Long Point First Nation, Communauté anicinape de Kitcisakik, Wolf Lake First Nation, Montagnais de Pakua Shipi and Nation MicMac de Gespeg). This is the largest number of First Nations without reserve land of any province. Finally, the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne has a reserve that is partly in Quebec, Ontario and New York state. As of 2019, there are 91,293 registered Indians in Quebec, 63 per cent of whom live on reserve.

Article

Ojibwe

The Ojibwe (also Ojibwa, Ojibway and Chippewa) are an Indigenous people in Canada and the United States who are part of a larger cultural group known as the Anishinaabeg.

Article

Commonwealth

The Commonwealth of Nations is made up of 54 countries, including Canada, that were for the most part once part of the British Empire. They work together on international policy and hold a major sports event every four years. It is one of the world’s oldest political associations of states.

Article

Maureen Forrester

Maureen Kathleen Stewart Forrester, CC, O.ON, OQ, opera and recital singer, teacher, arts administrator (born 25 July 1930 in Montreal, QC; died 16 June 2010 in Toronto, ON). Maureen Forrester was one of Canada’s greatest and best-known classical singers. She was renowned for her remarkable trumpet-like contralto and her deeply emotive musical interpretations. The only classical performer other than Glenn Gould to be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, she was admired greatly at home and abroad for her recitals, recordings and opera performances. She also served as chair of the Canada Council for the Arts, director of du Maurier Arts and chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University. She received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, the Molson Prize, the Diplôme d’honneur from the Canadian Conference of the Arts and the Canadian Music Council Medal, as well as numerous other honours.

Article

Quebec Resolutions

The Quebec Resolutions are a list of 72 policy directives that formed the basis of Canada’s Constitution. They emerged from the Charlottetown Conference (1–9 September 1864) and the Quebec Conference (10–27 October 1864). Those meetings were held by politicians from the five British North American colonies to work out the details of how they would unite into a single country. (See also: Confederation.) The Quebec Resolutions were finalized at the London Conference (4 December 1866 to March 1867). They formed the basis of the British North America Act — the first building block of Canada’s Constitution — which established the Dominion of Canada on 1 July 1867.

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Place Names

Canada has about 350,000 official place names. These include names of populated places, water bodies (e.g. lakes) and geographical features (e.g. mountains).

Macleans

Elections '97: The Platforms

Among political strategists, it is sometimes known as "the barbecue factor": the manner in which a once-hot candidate ends up cooked on election day. The principal example, one that many of Prime Minister Jean Chrétien's strategists recall with a shudder, is former Ontario Liberal leader Lyn McLeod.

Macleans

Philip Services Corp

There has been growth - but, lately, in the field of bad news (page 54). On Jan. 27, the company announced an after-tax loss in 1997 of close to $260 million. That figure, the firm acknowledged, included $88 million worth of reclaimed copper that Philip could not account for.

Article

Musical Theatre

The Canadian musical, like Canadian film, has always suffered in the public eye by comparison with its larger, more affluent American counterpart. The American musical, with its emphasis on extravagant production, has been the most successful commercial theatrical form of the 20th century.

Editorial

Canadian Prime Ministers

Along with regular elections and a widespread right to vote, a sense of humour is essential to a healthy democracy. Making fun of political leaders is one half of the recipe for truly free expression: the other is the willingness of those leaders to accept – however grudgingly – that being mocked goes with the territory.

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By those measures, Canada is in good shape. As the legendary cartoonist Terry "Aislin" Mosher notes, “Political cartooning has been the most consistent form of public humour in Canada since the time of Confederation.”

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As the exhibit he has assembled for Canada Day shows, none of our leaders have been exempt. The results have ranged from sometimes savage to others that simply illustrated the absurdity of a situation. John Wilson Bengough, the bane of Sir John A. Macdonald’s ruling years, was a Liberal whose inspiration flowed from his opposition to the Conservative prime minister. But most cartoonists are politically neutral and rejoice in making a target of whoever is in office. Sometimes the recipients seem to enjoy that: Sir Robert Borden kept a scrapbook of cartoons about himself.

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But while the target is invariably the leader, the target market for barbs is other Canadians, who take humour and solace in seeing their frustrations limned. Other than Borden, the laughter may not come so easily to those being satirized. But as this exhibit shows, they can take comfort in knowing that they are in plentiful and honourable company.

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Anthony Wilson-Smith

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(Jean Chrétien with Beaver, Susan Dewar, Sun chain of newspapers, 2000)

Article

Ballet

Ballet is a stylized form of Western theatrical dance based on a codified system of movement. It can be used to tell a story, evoke a mood, illustrate a piece of music, or simply provide a presentation of theatrical movement that is entertaining or intriguing in itself.