'I Was Unable to Identify with Topsy' - Carrie M. Best's Struggle Against Racial Segregation in Nova Scotia, 1942
Constance B. Backhouse
University of Ottawa - Common Law Section
Atlantis 22:2 (Spring 1998) 16-26.
This paper describes a court case that was buried in Canadian legal archives for fifty-six years. In 1942, Carrie Best brought a civil action for damages against a Nova Scotia theatre, claiming that the owners were enforcing a racially-segregated seating policy. The action was ultimately dismissed. Dr. Best, an African-Canadian who was a teacher, journalist, and founder of The Clarion (a newspaper that she began publishing in 1945) had been a long-time advocate for human rights and activist against racial discrimination and segregation in Nova Scotia. Carrie Best's decorated career as a journal and activist is public knowledge, but the history of her unsuccessful litigation calls for scrutiny. Such cases help us understand Canadian history to be deeply marked with racism.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 11
Keywords: Canada, Nova Scotia, racism, segregation, racial, African, civil, action, history, 1900, century, historical, litigation, activist, biography, Carrie, Best, discrimination, activism, advocate, advocacy, archive, legal, lawAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: May 20, 2013
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