Making a Global City: How One Toronto School Embraced Diversity
Published: March 2017© 2017
280 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 x 1.00 in, 12 figures
Half of Toronto’s population is born outside of Canada and over 140 languages are spoken on the city's streets and in its homes. How to build community amidst such diversity is one of the global challenges that Canada – and many other western nations – has to face head on.
Making a Global City critically examines the themes of diversity and community in a single primary school, the Clinton Street Public School in Toronto, between 1920 and 1990. From the swift and seismic shift from a Jewish to southern European demographic in the 1950s to the gradual globalized community starting in the 1970s, Vipond eloquently and clearly highlights the challenges posed by multicultural citizenship in a city that was dominated by Anglo-Protestants. Contrary to recent well-documented anti-immigrant rhetoric in the media, Making a Global City celebrates one of the world’s most multicultural cities while stressing the fact that public schools are a vital tool in integrating and accepting immigrants and children in liberal democracies.
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Jewish Clinton 1920-1952: “Well To The Fore Among Toronto Schools”
Chapter 3: At Clinton You’re a Somebody: Religion and the Idea of Citizenship
Chapter 4: European Clinton, 1950-1965: “Ruth Beside the Alien Corn”
Chapter 5: European Clinton, 1965-1975: From Mungie Cakes to Multiculturalism
Chapter 6: Global Clinton, 1975-1990: “We Have Children From Lots of Countries”
Chapter 7: Global Clinton and Heritage Languages
Chapter 8: Conclusion: Remembering the Answers
‘This highly accessible sociological study serves as a thoughtful meditation on the economic, social, political, and cultural changes experienced in Canada over the past century, as reflected in the fascinating history of a landmark downtown Toronto public school.’Publishers Weekly Online Review August 2017
‘This is an eminently readable and stimulating contribution to the literature on citizenship, as well as to the history of schooling in Canada… The book, with its solidly grounded historical base, adds greatly to that literature.’W.P.J. Miller, Canadian Historical Review vol 99:01:2018
"Vipond writes with sophistication, appreciation, and affection of all that a neighbourhood public school is called upon to do…The result is a most thoughtful, engaging school history – full of empirical, analytical, and theoretical insight into how a school should be in a diverse, divided city and world."Myer Siemiatycki, Historical Studies in Education Review Vol 30:1:2018
"Making a Global City is a good read that comes at an important time…Vipond persuasively shows how Canadians of all stripes have come together over decades to adapt, adjust, integrate and challenge diversity in meaningful and peaceful ways. It is a history that gives hope for the future."Melanie Adrian, Canadian Journal of Political Science Vol 51:2 2018
"Vipond writes with sophistication, appreciation, and affection of all that a neighbourhood public school is called upon to do."Myer Siemiatycki, Historical Studies in Education
"One of Canada’s leading political scientists, Robert Vipond, has written a superb and significant account of how education shapes citizenship in Canadian political development. Making a Global City is a beautifully written and meticulously researched account of Clinton Street Public School in Toronto from the 1920s to the 1990s. The study expands our understanding of a myriad of topics, including the role of the Canadian state in education, evolving notions of citizenship, the development of a multicultural society, and the functioning of an institution experienced by all Canadian children. I highly recommend this outstanding study."Desmond King, Andrew Mellon Professor of American Government, University of Oxford
"This is really an essay on citizenship, cloaked as the diary of a school, and flowing from the insight that a public school is an ideal lab for working out from the bottom up what Canadian citizenship means, versus dictating it from above. Robert Vipond is the ideal guide: equal parts scholar, citizen, and parent. He writes with both passion and precision."Rick Salutin, playwright, novelist, journalist, and former Clinton parent
"Robert Vipond does something unique and moving here: He gives us the widescreen story of Canada’s difficult transformation into a plural and diverse nation by taking a detailed look at 70 years of history of a single public school, its students, and its community. The result manages to be an intimate and surprising narrative that ties a single community to the great policy debates and national dialogues that shaped Canada’s century of expansion and development."Doug Saunders, columnist for the 'Globe and Mail' and author of 'Arrival City' and 'The Myth of the Muslim Tide'
CHEA Founders' Book Prize: Best Book in the History of Education
Ontario Historical Society's Joseph Brant Award (Best Book, Multicultural History)