Statement by the CHA President on Anti-Black Racism

Published on 3 Jun 2020

The cancellation of the 2020 CHA Annual Meeting has meant the loss of an in-person opportunity to consider ways in which colonialism and anti-Black racism – the Congress theme – have shaped both our history and our profession; events at home and around the world have demonstrated with heartbreaking regularity and recent intensity that colonialism and racism continue despite a global pandemic.  The death of George Floyd is neither exceptional nor a uniquely American tragedy, but another reminder of the ubiquity of anti-Black violence. Canada is not immune to anti-Black violence nor to racism generally, and we should take no solace in our separate nationality.

The CHA is committed to understanding the role that racism and colonialism have played in our past, and to eliminating the pervasive effects of their legacies on our future.  We must always be alert to racism – in both its violent and its casual forms – within our profession and in the histories that we study.  The cancellation of Congress has by no means weakened our resolve in confronting colonialism and anti-Black racism.

Penny Bryden
Canadian Historical Association

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