Canada’s Façade of Equality: Austin Clarke's More
Canada prides itself as a nation welcoming to immigrants, but this multicultural façade cloaks the struggles of immigrants who fight against systemic inequality. This study aims to expose the mechanisms of societal and systemic oppression faced by immigrants in Canada, especially Black immigrants, as well as the psychological isolation they endure living in the diaspora. The study relies primarily on Austin Clarke’s novel More, and investigates economic gatekeeping by Canadian employers who often require Canadian experience and education, relegating skilled migrants to unemployment and underemployment. This illustrates the barriers to upward social mobility faced by Canadian immigrants, a reality portrayed in More by the protagonist Idora’s poverty despite living for thirty years in Canada. This paper also delineates the societal oppression which manifests in the Canadian media’s perpetuation of discrimination and projection of degeneracy on Black Canadians. Furthermore, it investigates the role of unchecked police brutality in continuing psychological exclusion and brutal violence towards Black Canadians. The psychological alienation and denigration experienced by immigrants and those living in the diaspora is also explored through More. In this context, those living in the diaspora is defined by migrants and their descendants who live in one country but feel strong emotional and identity ties to their former country.
Therefore, Canada’s image as haven for immigrants is dispelled through its systemic and societal prejudice and exploitation of immigrants, complicity towards acts of brutal violence conducted by police officers, and exclusion towards those living in the diaspora.
Copyright (c) 2021 Mary Ma
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 International (CC-BY 4.0) that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.