Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, University of Toronto Press (UTP) reflects on some of our titles in the field of Black Studies. Plus, browse some UTP journals that are #FreeToRead online throughout the month of February, here.


Unsettling the Great White North: Black Canadian History

Edited by Michele A. Johnson and Funké Aladejebi

An exhaustive volume of leading scholarship in the field of Black Canadian history, Unsettling the Great White North highlights the diverse experiences of persons of African descent within the chronicles of Canada’s past. The book considers histories and theoretical framings within the disciplines of history, sociology, law, and cultural and gender studies to chart the mechanisms of exclusion and marginalization in “multicultural” Canada and to situate Black Canadians as speakers and agents of their own lives. Working to interrupt the myth of benign whiteness that has been deeply implanted into the country’s imagination, Unsettling the Great White North uncovers new narratives of Black life in Canada.


Nuances of Blackness in the Canadian Academy: Teaching, Learning, and Researching while Black

Edited by Awad Ibrahim, Tamari Kitossa, Malinda S. Smith and Handel K. Wright

The essays in Nuances of Blackness in the Canadian Academy make visible the submerged stories of Black life in academia. They offer fresh historical, social, and cultural insights into what it means to teach, learn, research, and work while Black.

Operating at the intersections of discourse and experience, contributors reflect on how Blackness shapes academic pathways, ignites complicated and often difficult conversations, and reimagines Black pasts, presents, and futures. This unique collection contributes to the articulation of more nuanced understandings of the ways in which Blackness is made, unmade, and remade in the academy and the implications for interrelated dynamics across and within post-secondary education, Black communities in Canada, and global Black diasporas.


Biographical Dictionary of Enslaved Black People in the Maritimes

By Harvey Amani Whitfield

Foreword by Donald A. Wright

This important book sheds light on more than 1,400 brief life histories of mostly enslaved Black people, with the goal of recovering their individual lives.

Harvey Amani Whitfield unearths the stories of men, women, and children who would not otherwise have found their way into written history. Whitfield makes it clear that these enslaved Black people had likes, dislikes, distinct personality traits, and different levels of physical, spiritual, and intellectual talent. Biographical Dictionary of Enslaved Black People in the Maritimes affirms the notion that they were all unique individuals, despite the efforts of their owners and the wider Atlantic world to dehumanize and erase them.


Colour Matters: Essays on the Experiences, Education, and Pursuits of Black Youth

By Carl E. James

Based on research conducted in Black communities, along with over thirty years of teaching experience, Colour Matters presents a collection of essays that engages educators, youth workers, and policymakers to think about the ways in which race shapes the education, aspirations, and achievements of Black Canadians. Informed by the current socio-political Canadian landscape, Colour Matters covers topics relating to the lives of Black youth, with particular, though not exclusive, attention to young Black men in the Greater Toronto Area.


Black Racialization and Resistance at an Elite University

By rosalind hampton

The presence and experiences of Black people at elite universities have been largely underrepresented and erased from institutional histories. This book engages with a collection of these experiences that span half a century and reflect differences in class, gender, and national identifications among Black scholars. By mapping Black people’s experiences of studying and teaching at McGill University, this book reveals how the “whiteness” of the university both includes and exceeds the racial identities of students and professors. Critically engaging the work of Black learners, academics, organizers, and activists within this dynamic political context, this book underscores the importance of Black Studies across North America.


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