The Riot at Christie Pits

By Cyril Levitt and William Shaffir

© 2018

Ethnic tensions had been rising in Toronto throughout the hot summer of 1933. Hitler had recently come to power in Germany and some residents of the eastern beaches neighbourhood had formed "Swastika Clubs" to protect their community from "undesirable elements."

On August 16, at Toronto’s Christie Pits, a baseball game between two local teams - one made up of Jewish players - ignited the simmering resentments. Some troublemakers unfurled a huge swastika flag, shouting, "Heil Hitler!" Retaliation from Jewish spectators and players was swift and reinforcements for both sides poured into the park. The result - never experienced in Toronto before or since - was a four-hour race riot.

The riot at Christie Pits remains a disturbing, even legendary part of the city's history. Authors Cyril Levitt and William Shaffir, carefully sifting fact from fiction, provide a compelling perspective on how ordinary Canadians reacted to the intensifying antisemitism in Europe.

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Product Details

  • Imprint: New Jewish Press
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP006174

  • PUBLISHED FEB 2018

    From: $13.00

    Regular Price: $20.00

    ISBN 9781988326085
  • PUBLISHED JAN 2019

    From: $12.32

    Regular Price: $18.95

Quick Overview

Authors Cyril Levitt and William Shaffir, carefully sifting fact from fiction, provide a compelling perspective on how ordinary Canadians reacted to the intensifying antisemitism in Europe.

The Riot at Christie Pits

By Cyril Levitt and William Shaffir

© 2018

Ethnic tensions had been rising in Toronto throughout the hot summer of 1933. Hitler had recently come to power in Germany and some residents of the eastern beaches neighbourhood had formed "Swastika Clubs" to protect their community from "undesirable elements."

On August 16, at Toronto’s Christie Pits, a baseball game between two local teams - one made up of Jewish players - ignited the simmering resentments. Some troublemakers unfurled a huge swastika flag, shouting, "Heil Hitler!" Retaliation from Jewish spectators and players was swift and reinforcements for both sides poured into the park. The result - never experienced in Toronto before or since - was a four-hour race riot.

The riot at Christie Pits remains a disturbing, even legendary part of the city's history. Authors Cyril Levitt and William Shaffir, carefully sifting fact from fiction, provide a compelling perspective on how ordinary Canadians reacted to the intensifying antisemitism in Europe.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Imprint: New Jewish Press
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "[Major’s book] results in a detailed study that impressively brings out the handling of biblical texts across a range of retellings throughout the Anglo-Saxon period, even as he convincingly demonstrates that there may be less at stake in these retellings than meets the eye."


    Paula J. Draper, Multicultural History Society of Ontario
    Urban History Review, vol 17 no 3, February 1989

    “Recreating the atmosphere of depression-era Toronto and its shifting demographic composition through an emphasis on oral interviews and newspaper accounts, Levitt and Shaffir demonstrate how prejudice and xenophobia could escalate into condoned violence…The authors have given us a valuable case study of the effects on the urban landscape of economic recession, xenophobia and prejudice.”
    Paula J. Draper, Research Associate, Multicultural History Society of Ontario
  • Author Information

    Cyril Levitt is a professor in the Department of Sociology at McMaster University.


    William Shaffir is a professor in the Department of Sociology at McMaster University.
  • Table of contents

    Note to the Reader 
    Acknowledgments
    Foreword

    Introduction
    Chapter 1  Toronto the Good—1933
    Chapter 2  “Every Evil is Jewish”
    Chapter 3  “Keep the Beaches Clean”
    Chapter 4  “Jews Flee in Terror From Nazi Torture”
    Chapter 5  “Swastika Club Must Be Outlawed”
    Chapter 6  Kipling or Hitler?
    Chapter 7  “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”
    Chapter 8  “Dismissed All Charges”
    Chapter 9  Protest
    Chapter 10  “…Lies, Lies, Lies”
    Conclusion
    Postscript

    Photographs

    Notes
    Appendices 
    Bibliography  
    Index 

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