Whiteout: How Canada Cancels Blackness

George Elliott Clarke

In Whiteout: How Canada Cancels Blackness, his new and essential collection of essays, George Elliott Clarke exposes the various ways in which the Canadian imagination demonizes, excludes, and oppresses Blackness. Clarke’s range is extraordinary: he canvasses African-Canadian writers who have tracked Black invisibility, highlights the racist bias of true crime writing, reveals the whitewashing of African-Canadian perspectives in universities, and excoriates the political failure to reckon with the tragedy of Africville, the once-thriving, “Africadian” community whose last home was razed in 1970.

For Clarke, Canada’s relentless celebration of itself as a site of “multicultural humanitarianism” has blinded White leaders and citizens to the country’s many crimes, at home and abroad, thus blacking out the historical record. These essays yield an alternate history of Canada, a corrective revision that Clarke describes as “inking words on snow, evanescent and ephemeral.”

Véhicule Press


Whiteout [is] an engrossing collection of essays in which Clarke delineates the ways in which African-Canadians have been disenfranchised (at best) in a nation that ‘defines itself primarily in opposition to the United States.’” – Evelyn C. White, Atlantic Books Today

George Elliott Clarke was born in Windsor, Nova Scotia, and grew up in Halifax. His acclaimed verse-novel Whylah Falls (1990), adapted for radio and stage, has been published in Chinese, while Execution Poems (2001) won the Governor General’s Literary Award for poetry. His recent books include Where Beauty Survived: An Africadian Memoir (2021). He is the E.J. Pratt Professor of Canadian Literature at the University of Toronto.
ISBN13: 9781550656138

CDN $14.99

Trade paperback
300 pp 7.5" x 5"
ISBN13: 9781550656077

CDN $24.95