Rikka - Volume 6, Number 1 - Blacks in Canada

Year Published:  1979  
Pages:  60pp  
Inactive Serial

Resource Type:  Serial Publication (Periodical)
Cx Number:  CX2057


Abstract published in Connexions in 1979:

This issue of RIKKA is subtitled Blacks in Canada, and contains histories of blacks in different regions of Canada, poems, and a short story by Miriam Tlali, a South African, called "Soweto Hijack."

The article, "From Nova Scotia to Toronto" relates the story of two black girls who experienced the racism of Nova Scotia, and who were able to receive a university education despite the race discrimination practiced in the educational system. These girls experienced economic exploitation and social humiliation similar to that experienced by other blacks in Nova Scotia. Many of the black 'lumpenproletariat' of Sydney, N.S. live near a steel factory, "...near railroad tracks, right in the path of pollution stench and noise emitted by industry." Many blacks experienced lack of attention given to their academic needs in school.

These experiences are similar to those of blacks in British Columbia where whites fear, "...racial contamination, a threat to economic, and political stability." Such groups as the United Negro Improvement Association, formed in 1920, fought for improvement in educational opportunities and a political pressure group.

One educational opportunity described in RIKKA, the Transitional Year Program (TYP), has operated at both the University of Toronto and Dalhousie University in N.S. since 1970. The aim of this program is to, "...prepare, for university students who drop out of high school for financial or social reasons by taking them through a special curriculum designed to fill the gaps in their education and to provide them with supportive academic and personal counselling."

[Note: Rikka was published between 1974 and 1987. The publisher, George Yamada, died in 2005. George Yamada's archives are held by the Archives of Ontario.]

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