The following timeline includes selected events that may have been caused by, related to or contributed to the intensification of wealth disparities in Canada’s social history. It is partial, not comprehensive. It is not intended as a vehicle to promote or denounce any particular political party. It is my effort to enhance understanding of political philosophy with an ethical turn where social justice for the most vulnerable populations in Canada counts. In some cases the entries simply draw attention to robust debates.
This timeline was generated automatically by EndNote 8, a bibliographic database I have been using to collect references since the early 1990s. This draft version was uploaded on December 14, 2006.
1980 In 1980 (Reh 2005) the average CEO of a major corporation made 42 times the average hourly worker’s pay. By 1990 that had almost doubled to 85 times. In 2000, the average CEO salary reached an unbelievable 531 times that of the average hourly worker. “http://management.about.com/cs/generalmanagement/a/CEOsOverpaid_p.htm
1980 In a 2005 article John Reh claimed that CEO’s were grossly overpaid regardless of performance. Other CEOs were on the boards so the salaries have no ceiling. Reh argued that, “According to Business Week, the average CEO of a major corporation made 42 times the average hourly worker’s pay in 1980. By 1990 that had almost doubled to 85 times. In 2000, the average CEO salary reached an unbelievable 531 times that of the average hourly worker.” http://management.about.com/cs/generalmanagement/a/CEOsOverpaid_p.htm
1980 Margaret Thatcher and conservative Republican Ronald Reagan championed neo-liberal market-oriented backlash.,
1980 Nicholas Abercrombie published Class, Structure, and Knowledge: Problems in the Sociology of Knowledge.,
1980 Pacific Rim countries enjoyed high growth rates and surging export markets.,
1980-1 “In 1980 a Royal Commission on Newspapers, chaired by Tom (Kent), rang the alarm bell as daily newspapers fell into fewer and fewer corporate hands, and concentration reached ‘dangerous levels’. Now Kent says ‘the issue is democracy.the greater the power, the more it is abused’ as Black drives up the profit ratios on his papers, and reduces the quality and diversity of the media to Canadians as a whole.” The Tom Kent Royal Commission on Newspapers reported that “The great majority [of Canadians] believe that newspapers and the mass media in general, have responsibilities to the public different from those of other businesses.” The mass media is expected to function in public interest, not just economic self-interest (Hackett 1998:1). “It is those newspapers with a large advertising market to protect and with a readership all social classes of society that have taken the initiative of setting up existing press councils…. The various press councils established in Canada until now are seeking to perpetuate the social consensus which has ensured the success of the so-called omnibus newspapers …. Whose formula is specifically designed towards advertising led consumer patterns and whose basic unit is the traditional family (Hackett 1998:92).”
1980s “Beginning around 1980, scholars began to speak of a “crisis” in the discipline. No longer secure with the idea of empirical research, an insecurity sparked in large part by poststructuralist critiques in literary criticism, historians of art began to speak of “theory” as that something which was ideologically opposed to “history.” At stake seemed to be the conception of Art as such. The crisis mentality eventuated in a hardening of positions: those scholars who long had an investment in positivistic pursuits proudly reasserted their role as “historians” and became outspoken in their dismissal of extra-artistic analyses, particularly those that paraded their origins in psychoanalysis, feminism, Semiotics, and Marxism. On the other side, the self-proclaimed “new” art historians (read “theoreticians”) decried the politically invested, what they called the conservatively capitalist, motives of academically entrenched art historians, particularly in England and the United States. Two book titles from the middle of the 1980s, The End of the History of Art? (Hans Belting, 1983, trans., 1987) and The End of Art Theory (Victor Burgin, 1986) suggest that the result of the controversy raging in a discipline long unaccustomed to attack was that feelings of crisis had turned into self-aggrandizing visions of the apocalypse. Matters became a little less strident as the 1980s ended, and it seems possible to map the historical evolution of the disciplinary changes and attempt a brief overview of the variety of theoretical positions that have come to animate the field (Holly 1997).”
1980s Jurgen Habermas’ notion of the “public sphere” where people can discuss matters of mutual concern as peers, and learn about facts, events, and the opinions, interests, and perspectives of others, became more widely discussed in the United States. Discourse on values, norms, laws, and policies generates politically relevant public opinion. These discussions can occur within various units of civil society (thus, we can speak of multiple “public spheres” or “civil publics”). But there is also a larger public sphere that mediates among the various mini-publics that emerge within and across associations, movements, religious organizations, clubs, local organizations of concerned citizens, and informal social networks in the creation of public opinion (Cohen 1998). ” His ideas of the public sphere and communicative action were adopted in Germany in the early 1960s by radical thinkers.,
1980s Privatization, a term probably coined by UK’s The Economist, spearheaded by the Thatcher and Reagan administrations as part of their strongly neo-liberal or market liberal policies, became the trend.
1980s The quality of everyday life in Iqaluit steadily decreased in the 1980s. The Hudson Bay Company was replaced by Northern stores. There was no institutional memory of the role of Inuit art. The art market became a nuisance commodity to some managers stacked somewhere between furnishings and flour.,
1980s United States raised interest rates on national and foreign debt to protect its own economy. The US economy had supposedly suffered because of instabilities in the price of oil. Countries —like Brazil — that were heavily indebted, found themselves constrained by unmanageable payments of raised interest rates. Brazil was forced to go to the International Monetary Fund for emergency funds. The IMF insisted on deep, drastic cuts into basic social services, such as health and education, as a condition of the emergency loans.,
1981 The Federal Government introduced the Constitution Act, a bill to repatriate the constitution and make significant amendments to it. 59 MLA’s, staff and members of the press went to Ottawa from Yellowknife to argue against changes to the Constitution with which they disagreed. Nellie Cournoyea was one of the Chairs of the Special Committee. (Parker 1996:77),
1982 Ann Davis described English-speaking Canada as beset by a Scottish Common Sense philosophy which insisted that the puritanical moralism inspired by God which emphasized hard work, frugality, obsession with sin held sway over the intellectual faculty. It fostered a defense of citizens against the state. It is expressed in personal and public restraint, politeness, respect for privacy, industriousness “conjoined with a talent for making money, tolerance towards others. At its worst, it graded over its smugness, self-satisfaction, conviction of superiority, frozen assurance of rightness, intolerance”, condescension and avoidance of the vulgar. Davis argued that Canadians who are concerned about their identity are merely dissatisfied with the identity they have (Cited in Balkind 1983:11).
1982 The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms decisively changed the face of Canadian politics. “The Charter has legalized our politics (Michael Mandel).” Rights are more likely to be decided by the courts that by the elected legislature. The language and venues of rights have also changed with the Charter. Individuals, institutions and even governments use litigation to influence public policy. 1, 000 Charter cases a year are heard by the courts. (Brooks 2000:266). Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guaranteed Canadians fundamental rights and freedoms. The judiciary was accorded the constitutional mandate necessary to rule on substantive validity of legislation. The courts ensure that the rights and freedoms granted by the Charter are respected (Holmes 2001:3). (Holmes 2001:3) Constitution Act ended the authority of the British Parliament in Canada. “The Constitution of Canada is the supreme law of Canada and any law that is inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution is, to the extent of the inconsistency, of no force or effect.” As a result, the Charter expressly modified the tradition of parliamentary supremacy with the principle of constitutional supremacy and thereby ushered in a while new era of judicial review (Holmes 2001:11).”
1982 Constitution Act Charter of Rights of Freedom “The Charter came into effect on April 17, 1982. It was part of a package of reforms contained in a law called the Constitution Act, 1982. One section of the Charter, section 15, came into effect only on April 17, 1985, three years after the rest of the Charter. This delay gave governments time to bring their laws into line with the equality rights in section 15.” Overview Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms enshrined “freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication,” subject to “such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.” Legal scholar Harry Glasbeek “predicted that the Charter’s freedom of expression clause could be used “to defend individuals generally and the media in particular from state controls, but not individuals or their defender, the state, from private interests,” thus helping the private press “to retain its sovereignty as a purveyor of information and opinion.47” In effect free speech is interpreted as a property right of corporate entities, not as a human right of individual citizens. (Hackett 1998:80) “Constitution of Canada recognizes and affirms existing aboriginal rights.” ((PWGS) 2001),
1982 Gilligan, Carol. 1982. In a Different Voice: Psychological Theory and Women’s Development.,
1982 Hans Haake participated in the Documenta 7 exhibition which was held at the Museum Fridericianum. Haake Oelgemaelde, Homage a Marcel Broosthaers in the Neue Gallery not in the Museum Fridericianum. His work was confrontational. On one wall was a detailed oil painting of Ronald Reagan which was in a gold frame and surrounded by classical museological framing devices. On the other was a gigantic photo-mural of a peaceful anti-Reagan demonstration protesting the deployment of cruise missiles to German soil held in Bonn a week prior. Artistic Director Rudi Fuchs presented a contradictory image. See Crimp (MR:238-9).
1983 The 1983 publication of Native Children and the Child Welfare System, prepared for the Canadian Council on Social Development by Patrick Johnston, sent shock waves through child welfare and government systems, particularly those involved in First Nations child welfare.16 It presented documentary evidence that First Nations people had good grounds for protesting against the massive involvement of child welfare agencies in removing children from their families and communities” (RCAP 1996).
1983 The 1985 Council of the European Economic Community extended the 1983 ban on imports of all products of the commercial sealhunt. This closed the most important fur fashion market to sealskins and devastated the Canadian sealskin market. It was an impressive victory for animal rights activists. “To Inuit, however, who had gone virtually unnoticed in the general furor of lobbying in the preceding days, it represented not simply the loss of a market but the real problem of maintaining the fabric of their culture in the face of southern domination.” (1) From George Wenzel (1991).
1983 Benedict Anderson wrote his influential Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. Census, map and museum are the three major institutions of power which shaped the way in which allowed the colonial state to imagine its dominion. These three institutions of knowledge management established systems of classification which nurtured a sense of identity in the emerging, imagined, national community. Museums as symbols of a hierarchy of power and order responds to the individual and community’s need-to-remember. The museum served to classify, create hierarchies of value, store and served in a role of archontes of cultural traditions. It is our limitation as humans constrained in serial time yet equipped with selective memories, that leaves us dependent on archives. Our long term memory is accessed through mechanisms that we do not yet fully comprehend, so we recall certain things but not others. Everyday life experiences provide individuals with an accumulation of events that evoke (sympathy) emotions. Remembering these sympathies repeated in small habits day after day, helps individuals to evaluate justice with greater lucidity and reason. These three institutions of power profoundly shaped the way in which the colonial state imagined its dominion. The census created ”identities” imagined by the classifying mind of the colonial state. The fiction of the census is that everyone is in it, and that everyone has one, and only one, extremely clear place. The map also worked on the basis of a totalizing classification. It was designed to demonstrate the antiquity of specific, tightly bounded territorial units. It also served as a logo, instantly recognizable and visible everywhere, that formed a powerful emblem for the anticolonial nationalism being born. The museum allowed the state to appear as the guardian of tradition, and this power was enhanced by the infinite reproducibility of the symbols of tradition. Chapter 11: Memory and Forgetting Awareness of being embedded in secular, serial time, with all its implications of continuity, yet of ”forgetting” the experience of this continuity, engenders the need for a narrative of ”identity.”. http://www.src.uchicago.edu/ssr1/PRELIMS/Culture/cumisc1.html#ANDERSON
1983 The British sociologist Ernest Gelner published Nations and Nationalism in which he described “the inherent difficulty of belonging to a shared ideal that transcends geography. He writes, “The idea of a man without a nation seems to impose a strain on the modern imagination. A man must have a nationality as he must have a nose and two ears. All that seems obvious, though alas, it is not true. But that it would have come to seem so very obviously true is indeed an aspect, or perhaps the very core, of the problem of nationalism. Having a nation is not an inherent attribute of humanity, but it has come to appear as such (Rifkin 2004: 228 citing Gelner 1983:6).”
1983 Economy of the North: Until 1983 cash came from seal skins.,
1983 Jurgen Habermas (1983:9 in Nemiroff 1989) traced the crisis of meaning [affecting art] to the 18th century Enlightenment which separated fields of understanding into independent units: 1. objective science; 2. universal morality; 3. autonomous art. each sphere of understanding had its own logic. Everyday life was organized logically around these three spheres of science, morality and art. The Enlightenment project of modernity compartmentalized spheres of knowing and created a culture of expertise. The 18th century Enlightenment project restricted the spheres of knowledge related to art as aesthetics. Science, ethics and aesthetics were separated, compartmentalized, each with its own experts. Art could only reveal aesthetic value, not ethical nor scientific and rational. The enlightenment project organized spheres of knowledge and therefore power. Summarized by Nemiroff from Hal Foster’s edited book Anti-Aesthetic.
1983 REAL Women organization was created as a conservative backlash against progress made by feminists.,
1983 Therefore, in the first blueprint for the government of Nunavut in the early 1980s, one of the key recommendations was that a strong human rights act be an important part of the Nunavut Constitutional Forum’s model for Nunavut: Building Nunavut, 1983, published by the Nunavut Constitutional Forum (Amagoalik 2001).
1984 Brian Mulroney elected Prime Minister of Canada,
1984 Edgar Reitz eleven-part film-length (15 hours) West German television production Heimat (Homeland) premiered at the Munich film festival (Gabriel 2004:149). The appearance of this landmark film with its powerful socio-historical resonance marked an important foray into cultural debates. Holocaust was broadcast on prime time television in 1979 in Germany reaching a huge audience. German director Edgar Reitz, irritated by the way in which German history was written by Americans, created Heimat to reclaim German history. His semi-autobiographic story written in a Proustian island refuge, detailed the everyday life of a farm family in the village of Schabbach from 1919 to 1982. His narrative involves the dramatization of the banalities of everyday life allowing the plot of the story to unfold in all directions like a panaroma, not in a linear path or perspective. In this way his film is like a novel. It has been described as a film “in search of that Bloch-esque “homeland which shines into the childhood of all”. The series was criticized for not mentioning concentration camps, Jews, gypsies, implying that all the home front families were innocent, unaware, uninformed. The film was as well-known in Germany as Roots was in the United States.
1984 Giddens published The Constitution of Society: Outline of a Theory of Structuration, in which he examined the social theory by reworking “conceptions of human being and human doing, social reproduction and social transformation. Of prime importance in this respect is a dualism that is deeply entrenched in social theory, a division between objectivism and subjectivism. Objectivism was a third -ism characterizing the orthodox consensus, together with naturalism and functionalism. In spite of Parsons’ terminology of ‘the action frame of reference’, there is no doubt that in his theoretical scheme the object (society) predominates over the subject (the knowledgeable human agent). Others whose views could be associated with that consensus were very much less sophisticated in this respect than was Parsons. By attacking objectivism — and structural sociology — those influenced by hermeneutics or by phenomenology were able to lay bare major shortcomings of those views. But they in turn veered sharply towards subjectivism. The conceptual divide between subject and social object yawned as widely as ever. (Giddens 1984),
1984 Guerin decision, Supreme Court of Canada, 1984: In the Guerin case, the Musqueam Indian Band sued the federal Crown for breach of trust concerning the leasing of reserve land to a golf club in the late 1950s. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the federal government had a “fiduciary responsibility” for Aboriginal people – that is, a responsibility to safeguard Aboriginal interests – which it had breached. Chief Justice Brian Dickson described First Nations’ interests in their lands as a “pre-existing legal right not created by the Royal Proclamation.the Indian Act.or any other executive order or legislative provision.” The ruling was especially significant because it recognized pre-existing Aboriginal rights both on reserves and outside reserves (1984).
1984 Hans Haacke presented ‘U. S. Isolation Box, Grenada, 1983’ in a CUNY exhibition (1984) entitled Art and Social Conscience. New York art critic Hilton Kramer (1984) described Haacke’s huge, square unpainted box as a parody of Donald Judd’s minimalist work. Kramer considered this work to be an attack on art itself not just on President Reagan’s policies. Haacke’s isolation box is a factual reproduction of prison boxes used by the US army who disregarded the Geneva Convention in 1983 to humiliate Cuban and Grenadian hostages. Kramer (1984) in Turning Back the Clock: Art and Politics in 1984 claimed neutrality in aesthetic issues but abhorred the politicization of art. He vehemently attacked 1984 exhibitions that dealt with art and politics.
1984 Meares Island case, B.C. Supreme Court, ongoing. In 1984, Nuu-chah-nulth people and other protesters blocked the access of MacMillan Bloedel to Meares Island. The Province of B.C. regarded the vast majority of the island as Crown land, but the protesters claimed allowing logging on Meares Island interfered with Aboriginal title. A court injunction was sought to halt MacMillan Bloedel’s operations until the claim had been resolved. The B.C. Supreme Court denied the request, but the B.C. Court of Appeal, which does not usually hear appeals in such injunction cases, overturned that ruling. The court indicated that Aboriginal claims should be resolved by “negotiations and by settlement. in a reasonable exchange between governments and the Indian nations.”The Meares Island case is adjourned by agreement of the Nuu-chah-nulth, MacMillan Bloedel, the Province and Canada. The injunction on logging is still in effect and none of the parties has requested the trial resume (2003).
1984 Sir Anthony Parsons, British ambassador to Iran from x to y, published The Pride and Fall, which described how Pahlavi Reza Shah considered Iran to be part of Western civilization, separated by an accident of geography. Arab invasions with its Islamic religion had suffocated Iranians innate talents and abilities. Parsons noted that with the power of governance firmly in the hands of the Ayatollah, he was vulnerable to the same fate as the deposed Shah in 1973: in the minds of the populous, he could be blamed for social ills. Even the most tyrannical dictators need a minimum of popular acquiescence for survival (Parsons 1984).
1984 Using statistics from the Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women, NDP MP Margaret Mitchell raises the issue of wife battering during a speech in the House of Commons. Male MPs respond with laughter and catcalls.,
1985 The 1985 Council of the European Economic Community extended the 1983 ban on imports of all products of the commercial sealhunt. This closed the most important fur fashion market to sealskins and devastated the Canadian sealskin market. It was an impressive victory for animal rights activists. “To Inuit, however, who had gone virtually unnoticed in the general furor of lobbying in the preceding days, it represented not simply the loss of a market but the real problem of maintaining the fabric of their culture in the face of southern domination.” (1) From George Wenzel (1991).
1985 The Canadian government established the Canadian Human Rights Commission to develop and conduct information programs to foster public understanding of this Act and of the role and activities of the Commission, to foster public recognition of the principle, undertake or sponsor research programs relating to its duties and functions under this Act, maintain close liaison with similar bodies or authorities in the provinces in order to foster common policies and practices and to avoid conflicts respecting the handling of complaints in cases of overlapping jurisdiction; consider recommendations, suggestions and requests concerning human rights and freedoms as it receives from any source, carry out or cause to be carried out such studies concerning human rights and freedoms as may be referred to it by the Minister of Justice and include in a report referred to in section 61 a report setting out the results of each such study together with such recommendations in relation thereto as it considers appropriate; review any regulations, rules, orders, by-laws and other instruments made pursuant to an Act of Parliament and by persuasion, publicity or any other means that it considers appropriate to discourage and reduce discriminatory practices, issue guidelines setting out the extent to which and the manner in which, in the opinion of the Commission, any provision of this Act applies in a class of cases described in the guideline.,
1985 Canadian Human Rights Act was adopted which extended Canadian laws that prosribed discrimination. The purpose of this Act is to extend the laws in Canada to give effect, within the purview of matters coming within the legislative authority of Parliament, to the principle that all individuals should have an opportunity equal with other individuals to make for themselves the lives that they are able and wish to have and to have their needs accommodated, consistent with their duties and obligations as members of society, without being hindered in or prevented from doing so by discriminatory practices based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, family status, disability or conviction for an offence for which a pardon has been granted. http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/H-6/31435.html
1985 Discourse “Analysis and the Post-structuralism of Laclau and Mouffe: During the 1970s and the early 1980s structural Marxism, associated with French theorists such as Louis Althusser, Étienne Balibar and Nicos Poulantzas, was very influential amongst leftist political scientists in both Britain and Denmark. Later, many followers of these schools of thought, inspired by the open and undogmatic Marxism of Antonio Gramsci, formed a neo-Gramscian wave in theory that criticised the economic determinism and class reductionism of structural Marxism. Some aimed to combine neo-Gramscian theory with poststructuralist insights from the works of Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida and Jacques Lacan. The result was the gradual elaboration of a poststructuralist strand of Discourse Analysis. The UK-based scholars Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe (1985) developed a version of this that became highly influential not only in the UK, but also in Denmark, where a large number of students and researchers draw upon their work.” (Torfing 2002),
1985 “John MacDonald director of the Igloolik Research Laboratory developed an oral history program with the Igloolik elders accumulating hundreds of hours of interviews” (D’Anglure 2002:207).
1985 “Latour uses the cases of Boyle and Hobbes, borrowed from a critical reading of Shapin and Schaffer’s Leviathan and the Air Pump 1985, to illustrate the seventeenth century struggle to construct the modern constitution of truth and its great divide. On the one hand, Hobbes “political science” sought to construct a political culture beyond nature. Here, nature and nonhuman activity can never have a bearing on what people do in the pure realm of political culture. Culture was seen as a purely human realm influenceable only by the creative practical and political activities of human actors. On the other hand, Boyle’s “scientific politics” endeavored to construct the rules and rituals for the discovery of nature through scientific experiments. Nature and non-humans and their rules were beyond the reaches of political culture and human cognitive and practical alteration. Nature was a purely nonhuman realm influenceable only by an absolute nature of things. Boyle’s experimental science also introduced the intervention of inert bodies or nonhuman actors into knowledge building. These bodies become active components of knowledge making: They are capable of showing, signing, writing, and scribbling on laboratory instruments before trustworthy witnesses (Latour 1993:23 cited in Ward 1996).”
1985 ?Madame Justice Bertha Wilson became the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.,
1985 Messer, S. B. (1985). Choice of method is value laden too. American Psychologist, 40, 1414-1415. Heading: Logic of Inquiry: Philosophy of Science. http://www.mathcs.duq.edu/~packer/IR/IRphil.html
1985 The “Royal Commission on Seals and the Sealing Industry was in the midst of hearings on the sealhunt. Canadians hoped that this ‘hard scientific data’ would convince the EEC of the environmental integrity and socioeconomic importance of at least some aspects of sealing.” This was a naive point of view. When the ban was extended no thought was given to the consequences in the lives of 25,000 Inuit. The Inuit had just presented their testimonies to the Royal Commission. These were not heard before the EEC made their decision. From George Wenzel (1991).
1985 The Supreme Court was divided into two wings — a philosophy of activism and a philosophy of deferring to the legislators (Holmes 2001:11).
1985 The United Nations World Conference on Women was held in Nairobi. Canadian women played a leading role in the adoption by the UN of the Nairobi Conference Report: Forward-Looking Strategies for the Advancement of Women.,
1985-8 Historians were divided over the history of the holocaust. Philosopher Jürgen Habermas and German historians (Hans and Wolfgang Mommsen and Hans-Ulrich Wehler) argued that a new emerging German nationalism as narrated by conservative historians (Klaus Hildebrand, Hagen Schulze, Michael Stürmer, Hillgruber and Nolte) threatened to trivialize the holocaust. He argued that the denial of responsibility on the part of these conservative historians would lead to a denial that the holocaust took place. Habermas declared that claim of these conservative historians that not all Germans were responsible for Nazi atrocities led to the production of a usable past for the ahistorical 1980s generation. This quarrel between historians was called the Historikerstreit of 1985-1988.,
1986 Declaration on the Right to Development (United Nations),
1986 Marie Bouchard commented that when she arrived in Baker Lake in 1986 the staggering political and cultural change “was evident in the higher than average number of suicides among young Inuit, the alarming incidence of alcohol and drug abuse, the senseless violence.” (Bouchard 2002:25),
1986 Ngugi Wa Thiong’O wrote his book Decolonising the Mind in which he emphasized the need to decolonize the mind from the stand view point of imperial customs and culture being inherently superior to one that embraces African culture. His work is located with other postcolonial writers, the empire writes back., Heinemann
1986 “The preparations for the World Assembly provide an opportunity for debate in Canada on current policies and practices affecting seniors. One area that deserves attention is the provision in the Canadian Human Rights Act that permits employers under federal jurisdiction to force employees to leave the workforce at a set age. Although the federal Government abolished mandatory retirement for its employees in 1986, the Act still permits it for federally regulated private employers.” ((CHRC) 2002a),
1987 Guattari, Felix and Gilles Deleuze. A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia.,
1987 Jurgen Habermas published his influential book entitled Theory of Communicative Action: System and Lifeworld: The Critique of Functionalist Reason.,
1987 Madame Justice Claire L’Heureux-Dube was appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.,
1988 Brian Mulroney elected Prime Minister of Canada,
1988 Canadian Multiculturalism Act. An Act for the preservation and enhancement of multiculturalism in Canada [1988, c. 31, assented to 21st July, 1988] in which the Government of Canada recognized the diversity of Canadians as regards race, national or ethnic origin, colour and religion as a fundamental characteristic of Canadian society and is committed to a policy of multiculturalism designed to preserve and enhance the multicultural heritage of Canadians while working to achieve the equality of all Canadians in the economic, social, cultural and political life of Canada. http://www.pch.gc.ca/progs/multi/policy/act_e.cfm
1988 Charles Taylor published a chapter entitled “The Moral Topography of Self” in a book entitled Hermeneutics and Psychological Theory: Interpretive Perspectives on Personality, Psychotherapy and Psychopathology. ” Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor employed the term `moral topography’ to explore the thesis that `the self exists essentially in moral space by means of a master image, a spatial one’. According to Taylor, a point of origin for the Western sense of self is autobiographical writings of St. Augustine, which construct an `inward’ journey towards a soul which is sedimented in religious tradition and personal memory. In the modern era, this same journey is revisited in therapeutic techniques which aim at a discovery of some core inner self on which personality might be reconstructed. See “Compass” Kevin Murray,
1988 In 19? The Canadian Human Rights Commission was established to redress redress any proscribed discrimination, including discrimination on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin or colour as defined in the Canadian Human Rights Act which provided that every individual should have an equal opportunity with other individuals to make the life that the individual is able and wishes to have, consistent with the duties and obligations of that individual as a member of society, and, in order to secure that opportunity. The Multicultural Act was adopted in 1988 with legal precedents found in the Constitution of Canada which recognizes rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada, in the Canadian Human Rights Act, in the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Covenant provides that persons belonging to ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities shall not be denied the right to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practise their own religion or to use their own language. http://www.pch.gc.ca/progs/multi/policy/act_e.cfm
1988 Michel de Certeau wrote his influential book entitled The Practice of Everyday Life. “Writing in the tradition of Lefevbre (more so than anyone else who comes to mind at the moment), his work touches upon contemporary Foucault and Bourdieu only briefly and then moves on to do much more. For example, in the way of analyses of strategic and tactical behavior, resistances, spatial practices, sublatern hermeneutics, and state/scientific ideologies of secrecy and knowledge. In de Certeau, we see not just a clearing of the intellectual path for towering figures such as Baudrillard, Bourdieu, Giddens, Lash, Appadurai, and Taussig (to name only a handful) – enabling them to come whistling along with their variously insightful ideas from A to Z – but we see it done with a panache and “Ich weiss es nicht” that is memorable in the persona it invokes.” From a review by Dongieux.,
1989 The Berlin Wall fell. When the former East and West Germanies formed one nation, two versions eastern and Western, separate since 1949, of the Nazi past were merged. This period inaugurated a post-wall historiography (Marcia Klotz 1999). Issues of identity, immigration and citizenship were confronted. Literature and film replaced architecture and monuments as vehicles for representing the past. The rhetorics of history and the cultures of memory shifted since 1989 in Germany. Media played a crucial role in the cultural remapping of the new Germany. New narratives have emerged and there is a new way of conceiving of German history since 1989.,
1989 Charles Taylor wrote Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity in which he argued that the modern concepts of self which rejected a moral code based on the existence of a transcendent God and His Creation in the form of Nature, give pride of place to the inner powers of the self to construct, transfigure or interpret the world. The artist’s inner hermeneutics is not conveniently encoded in a medieval iconography. The artist’s highly subjective invented language can only be understood by learning the artist’s language. There are no convenient familiar symbols that automatically convey meanings. (See also Thomson 1999 discussing Barnett Newman’s The Voice of Fire.) “The public’s main objection to the purchase of Voice of Fire was rooted, I think, in its conception or notion of abstract expressionism. Abstract expressionism is a “less-is-more” kind of art, and we live in a “more-is-better” kind of society. We live in a popular democracy, but abstract expressionism makes no concessions to popular taste. Abstract expressionism rejects the romantic concepts and figurative forms (portrait, landscape, still life) that make up many people’s idea of art. It is assertive and uncompromising, and demands an effort of understanding. It is, as the Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor points out, “transcendent”: it shares with mediaeval art the assumption that meaning may lie beyond, rather than in, appearances. Unlike mediaeval art, however, modern art does not have recourse to familiar symbols to convey its meanings. Instead, it is highly subjective. As Charles Taylor said in Sources of the Self, “unlike previous conceptions of moral sources in nature and God, these modern views give a crucial place to our own inner powers of constructing or transfiguring or interpreting the world. “This means that a painter invents his own language of form and colour, and in order to understand the work, the viewer, like Serge, must learn the artist’s language. The French painter and theorist, Maurice Denis said at the turn of this century (as we look to the millennium): “It is well to remember that a picture — before being a battle horse, a nude woman, or some anecdote — is essentially a flat surface covered with colours assembled in a certain order.” In other words, the ostensible subject of a painting, its “story,” is less important than its formal organization. When we get down to basics, and think of the two-dimensional surface of a painting, we become more aware of the formal qualities inherent in all paintings (Thomson 1999).” “Charles Taylor, discussing the epiphanic nature of modern art and its interweaving of the subjective and the transcendent, fell back on these lines of the American poet, Wallace Stevens: “The world about us would be desolate except for the world within us. The major poetic idea in the world is and always has been the idea of God. After one has abandoned a belief in God, poetry is the essence which takes its place as life’s redemption.” If poetry — or art — is “life’s redemption,” if the artist can “wrest truth from the void,” then the responsibility of a public gallery is to march steadfastly through the fire of controversy in the interest of ensuring that the artist can communicate this redemptive truth to the largest possible public (Thomson 1999).”
1989 China cracked down on pro-democracy activists in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square. This was denounced by Clinton when he was campaigning for the US Presidency.,
1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child (United Nations),
1989 Donna Harraway published her influential text “Teddy Bear Patriarchy: Taxidermy in the Garden of Eden, New York City, 1908-1936.”
1989 “East Germany’s Neues Forum, that courageous gathering of intellectuals, students, and workers which overturned the Stalinist-like regime in Berlin in 1989, lasted only six months in Germany’s mini-version of McWorld. Then it gave way to money and markets and monopolies from the West. By the time of the first all-German elections, it could scarcely manage to secure three percent of the vote. Elsewhere there is growing evidence that glasnost will go and perestroika — defined as privatization and an opening of markets to Western bidders — will stay (Barber 1992).”
1989 Economist John Williamson coined the term ‘Washington Consensus’ to describe the list of ten policy recommendations made by ‘academics, policy makers and the better-informed segments of the world’s populations’ for poor countries willing to reform their economies. The western world assumed that there was a clear consensus on the necessary steps towards prosperity.
1989 The end of the cold war, ideological passivity of China, spread of market liberalism set the stage for a new period in human rights. The new western political ideology claims that only democratic forms of governance are legitimate and promote human rights (Falk 2000b:47).
1989 European Torture Convention,
1989 Fukuyama published The End of History and the Last Man in which he declared an unabashed victory of economic and political liberalism and the ultimate triumph of the West and Western liberal democracy over all other regimes (Fukuyama 1989).
1989 Genevièe Bergeron, Hélène Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Havernick, Barbara Mafia Klueznick, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault, and Annie Turcotte are killed when Marc Lépine opens fire in Montreal’s École Polytechnique before turning his weapon on himself. The Montreal Massacre, as it comes to be known, provokes discussion throughout the country about violence against women and gun control.
1989 “Gorbachev renounces the Brezhnev Doctrine which pledged to use Soviet force to protect its interests in Eastern Europe. On September 10, Hungary opens its border with Austria, allowing East Germans t o flee to the West. After massive public demonstrations in East Germany and Eastern Europe, the Berlin Wall falls on November 9.” CNN Interactive: The Cold War. “The Eastern European revolutions that seemed to arise out of concern for global democratic values quickly deteriorated into a stampede in the general direction of free markets and their ubiquitous, television-promoted shopping malls (Barber 1992).”
1989 In 1989, “the editors of the first book on history museums in the United States complained about a “blanket of critical silence” surrounding the subject. In 1992, the British museum specialist Eilean Hooper-Greenhill observed that the museum as a historical institution had not received “any rigorous form of critical analysis.” Other scholars and critics chimed in around the same time.1 As it happened, a tidal wave of museum studies was just beginning to crest, many proclaiming critical agendas while complaining about their absence. The problem these days is how to navigate a flood of literature on the theory, practice, politics, and history of museums” (Starns 2005).
1989 International politics moved out of its western dominated phase (Ostergaard 1994).
1989 Janet Wolff came to the United States from Britain. Her work remained the same but she was now located in the humanities not the social sciences. Her background and training was in European sociology.,
1989 Madame Justice Beverley McLachlin was appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.,
1989 Robert Kroetsch in “Disunity as Unity: a Canadian Strategy” argued that “The centre does not hold. The margins, the periphery, the edge, now is the exciting and dangerous boundary where silence and sound meet (Kroetsch 1989:23 Nemiroff 1989).
1989 Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses became the epicentre of the crisis of meaning affecting art representing an ideological divide between the values, needs and concerns of Islam and the west. Salman Rusdie affair highlighted the mis-comprehension between freedom of expression valued by western individual and religious fundamentalists imposition of moral codes on individuals. The affair highlighted the ontological divide between the totalizing logic of individualism and its insistence on freedom of expression and the totalizing logic of religious beliefs insisting on submission of the individual to shared values of belief systems. These contradictory totalizing logical systems threatened, impede efforts to find a meaningful place for art. See Nemiroff 1989:15.
1989-99 Serb crackdown on ethnic Albanians in Kosovo (AP 2002).
1990 African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela, who has just been freed from South African jail, visits Canada. He speaks to huge crowds in Montreal and Toronto.,
1990 Anthony Giddens (1938-) has been critical of postmodernism (q.v.) as a theory of society in The Consequences of Modernity (1990), preferring as an alternative the idea of the reflexivity of modernity and ‘high modernity’ as a definite stage in the development of society. Reflexivity is important in the development of the self, a topic explored in Modernity and Self Identity (1991). He has also explored the sociology of emotions (q.v.) in The Transformation of Intimacy (1992). He was professor of sociology and fellow of King’s College, Cambridge in 1994. He has contributed extensively to the interpretation of classical sociological theory in Capitalism and Modern Social Theory (1971), Politics and Sociology in the Thought of Max Weber (1972), Emile Durkheim (1978) and Sociology (1982). He attempted a resolution of the traditional problems of class analysis in The Class Structure of the Advanced Societies (1973). The central theme of his perspective has been to develop the theory of action, agency and structure (q.v.) and the knowledgeability of the social actor, through a theory of structure (q.v.), in New Rules of Sociological Method (1976), Studies in Social and Political Theory (1977), Central Problems in Social Theory (1979), Profiles and Critiques ln Social Theory (1983), and The Constitution of Society (1984). He has begun an extensive critique of the theoretical limitations of historical materialism (q.v.) in A Contemporary Critique of Historical Materialism (1981). He has also presented an innovative framework for an integration of sociology and geography in the analysis of time and space (1984). He has criticized sociology for its failure to provide an analysis of the development of the state and the impact of international conflicts on social relations in The Nation-State and Violence (1985). [Nicholas Abercrombie et al., The Penguin Dictionary of Sociology. 3rd edition. London: Penguin Books, 1994:182], London, Penguin Books
1990 Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the South African anti-apartheid leader visited a remote Indian reserve in northeastern Ontario with international media shaming the federal and provincial governments on the international arena (York 1990:277).
1990 “British Columbia formally enters Nisga’a negotiations.” ((PWGS) 2001),
1990 Determined, intelligent, sophisticated and resourceful aboriginal leaders shifted the balance of power between the federal government and aboriginal peoples through a brilliant strategy that led to the failure of the Meech Lake Accord. Elijah Harper was the final actor but it was largely because thousands of natives formed a time-consuming parade of speakers that paralyzed the compulsory public hearings in Manitoba that were to precede the final signatures (York 1990:273).
1990 In 1990, changes were made to the comprehensive claims policy in an attempt to expedite the process. A Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples was set up with a broad mandate to examine in detail the relations, both historical and contemporary, among the Aboriginal and Euro-Canadian peoples of Canada. The Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples is the most extensive commission ever to examine these issues in Canada. It produced its reports and provided documentation of its hearings in 1995-96.,
1990 Iraq invaded Kuwait,
1990 “Janet Mancini Billson, “Opportunity or Tragedy: The Impact of Canadian Resettlement Policy on Inuit Families”, American Review of Canadian Studies 20/2 (Summer 1990), p. 192.” RCAP,
1990 Ontario Superior Court judge ruled that unreasonable amounts of time spent by accused persons in jail violates s. 11B of the Charter (Brooks 2000:265).
1990 Pierre Bourdieu “The Intellectual Field: a world apart” in In Other Words: Essays Towards a Reflexive Sociology (Polity Press, 1990) From the “Frankfurt School critique of Karl Manheim to the work of Michel Foucault this course examines the play between interpretation and explication. By delving into these debates on our locatedness in history and language, we will explore how the place of the rational is negotiated by various models of the thinking body. We will focus on the problematic of transcoding (reporting in one context material gathered in an other) and map out the ideological stakes in theorizing the structure of experience.”
1990 Quebec Police attacked a Mohawk barricade triggering the Oka Crisis.
1990 The (Reh 2005) average CEO of a major corporation made 85 times the average hourly worker’s pay. In 2000, the average CEO salary reached an unbelievable 531 times that of the average hourly worker.” http://management.about.com/cs/generalmanagement/a/CEOsOverpaid_p.htm
1990 “The season of violence is over. The time for reconstruction and reconciliation has arrived.” South African President F. W. de Klerk spoke these words as he announced the release of Nelson Mandela and the legalization of the African National Congress. This was seen as the first step to dismantling apartheid. See McKague (1991).
1990 Sparrow decision, Supreme Court of Canada. “In the Sparrow case, a member of the Musqueam Indian band appealed his conviction on a charge of fishing with a longer drift-net than permitted by the terms of the band’s fishing license under the Fisheries Act. He based his appeal on the argument that the restriction on net length was invalid because it was inconsistent with Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982 — the section of the Act that recognizes and affirms existing Aboriginal and treaty rights. The Sparrow case was the first in which the Supreme Court of Canada was called on to interpret what Section 35 actually meant. In overturning Sparrow’s conviction, the court ruled that the Constitution Act provides “a strong measure of protection” for Aboriginal rights. Any proposed government regulations that infringe on the exercise of those rights must be constitutionally justified. It further ruled that: “Aboriginal and treaty rights are capable of evolving over time and must be interpreted in a generous and liberal manner; governments may regulate existing Aboriginal rights only for a compelling and substantial objective such as the conservation and management of resources; and, after conservation goals are met, Aboriginal people must be given priority to fish for food over other user groups (1990).”
1990 The Supreme Court of Canada recognized in the Sparrow decision that the federal government had a “fiduciary obligation” to aboriginal peoples. Elijah Harper helped to block the Meech Lake Accord over lack of aboriginal participation. Violence erupted in Oka, Quebec, over a rejected land claim. The federal government announced its Native Agenda, committing to the acceleration of specific claims settlement. The Indian Commission of Ontario, in a discussion paper commissioned by the federal government and the Assembly of First Nations, recommended the creation of an independent claims body. The Chiefs Committee on Claims also recommended the creation of an independent claims body and of the Joint Working Group on Claims to continue exploration with the federal government on claims policy reform.
1990 The Supreme Court of Canada ruling in the Sparrow decision was a turning point in the history of federal relations with aboriginal peoples. A Musqueam fisher was charged with fishing with a longer drift-net than permitted by the Fisheries Act. He argued that Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982 recognized and affirmed existing Aboriginal and treaty rights.The Sparrow case was sent to the Supreme Court of Canada for adjudication. The Court agreed with the accused. The Sparrow decision became a landmark as it was the first time First Nations realized that the Constitution Act provided “a strong measure of protection” for Aboriginal rights. Even government regulations had to be justified constitutionally. It further ruled that, “Aboriginal and treaty rights are capable of evolving over time and must be interpreted in a generous and liberal manner; governments may regulate existing Aboriginal rights only for a compelling and substantial objective such as the conservation and management of resources; and, after conservation goals are met, Aboriginal people must be given priority to fish for food over other user groups.”
1990-3 Tom Siddon was demoted to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development position after the crisis in the fisheries while he was Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. “Only months after his swearing in the Oka Crisis broke out, and Siddon was attacked for his inactivity and refusal to negotiate until the Mohawks dropped their arms and removed the barricades. Soon after the exclusion of the First Nations from the constitutional process was one of the deciding factors in the death of the Meech Lake Accord. His greatest legacy and success was also achieved as Minister of Indian Affairs with the agreement to create the new territory of Nunavut in 1992.” wikipedia,
1990s Civil society became a slogan for the 1990s representing an alternative center for political (state) and economic (market) initiatives. See Cohen (1992).
1990s Non-westerners complained about human rights language that was biased in favour of western values while ignoring Asian values and Islamic perspectives (Falk 2000b:8).
1990s There has been an exponential growth of the number of local museums and the expansion of large museums in the 1990s has been referred to as the big bang by former ICOM director Hugues de Varine.
1991 Dissolution of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. “Soviet Union collapses. While vacationing in the Crimea, Gorbachev is ousted in a coup by Communist hard-liners on August 19. The coup soon falters as citizens take to the streets of Moscow and other cities in support of Russian President Boris Yeltsin, who denounced the coup. Military units abandon the hard-liners, and Gorbachev is released from house arrest. He officially resigns on December 25 as the Soviet Union is dissolved.” CNN Interactive: The Cold War,
1991 Giddens, Anthony. Modernity and Self-Identity,
1991 ‘Joseph Stiglitz, chief economist at the World Bank addressed a conference in Prague on theme of ‘Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?’ (Who guards the guards themselves?’) in a situation of rapid privatization. He acknowledged that there were major disagreements between economists. Stiglitz was opposed by Jeffrey Sachs, a Harvard economics professor, and Lawrence Summers, a colleague of Sachs and now the Treasury Secretary. ”They thought you needed to pursue privatization rapidly and that infrastructure would follow,” Stiglitz says. ”It was a divide then (Lloyd 1999).”,
1991 Julius Alexander Isaac, a native of Grenada, is named Chief Justice of the Federal Court of Canada. He becomes the first Black Chief Justice in Canada and the first to serve on the Federal Court.,
1991 Kenneth Hudson in “Misleading Ethnographical Museums” argued that experts in ethnography are “very knowledgeable about what is usually described as the “traditional culture” but are much less informed about what is going on in the same country today” (Hudson 1991:459). He continued his argument that this lack of knowledge of the contemporary everyday life is acceptable in an exhibition of ancient Roman art since most museum goers are familiar with Italian culture today. It is less neither responsible nor constructive to exhibit traditional artefacts from Ghana without contextualizing them, since the average person may have the impression that Ghana today has remained as it was hundreds of years ago. He recognized that objects alone cannot convey the ambiguities and contradictions of contemporary everyday life of Bombay or Accra or even small town England. He praised an exhibition called Hunters of the North at the Museum of Mankind in London, UK for an installation showing families in the ‘traditional’ igloo and the portable hut.
1991 The Privy Council appointed four Aboriginal and three non-Aboriginal commissioners ot the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (1991-6) to investigate stubborn problems and propose practical solutions to help restore justice to the relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in Canada. As parliamentarians argued about the role of aboriginal peoples in Canada’s constitution, First Nations angry protests at Kanesatake -Oka, Labrador, Ontario and BC, caught the attention of the international press tarnishing Canada’s reputation both internationally and nationally. The deplorable living conditions of life in many aboriginal communities that had been neglected, ignored or hidden were now revealed in the mass media. High rates of poverty, ill health, family break-down and suicide placed children and youth at high risk. At the same time a number of motivated, politicized, often educated, sophisticated and savvy aboriginals were actively working to for solutions.,
1991 Rabbi Michael Berenbaum was project director of the Holocaust Memorial Museum. Public awareness of the holocaust had heightened since 1978. Jewish suffering was once considered to be a footnote of WWII. This was changed and the horrendous crime was acknowledged.,
Clement, Wallace (1983) Class, Power and Prosperity, Toronto, Methuen Publications
Clement, Wallace (1986) The Canadian Corporate Elite: an Analysis of Economic Power, Ottawa, Carleton University Press
Mcquaig, Linda (1991) The Quick and the Dead: Brian Mulroney, Big Business and the Seduction of Canada, Toronto, Penguin Books