I don’t recall much discussion about the first wave of South Asian migrants who came on the Komagata Maru in 1914, almost all British citizens who were forced to leave because of Canada’s Exclusion Laws. Nor about the history of the Chinese or Japanese migrants (save for the Second World War internment) and their everyday contribution to building the Canadian West.
There was more on black history, but in my days it largely centred on the underground railway that helped bring former slaves to Canada. It was as if their journeys and struggles ended once they came here, which most of us now know wasn’t the case.
And what is the worst part of our limited education about Canada’s aboriginal communities is that we came to see them largely as victims. Nothing more.”