REFRACTING PACIFIC CANADA: Seeing Our Uncommon Past

TitleREFRACTING PACIFIC CANADA: Seeing Our Uncommon Past
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsYu, H
JournalBC Studies
Pagination5
ISBN Number0005-2949
KeywordsAsians, Chinese Canadians, Language, Political alliances, White supremacists
Abstract

From the earliest moments of colonial British Columbia, Chinese migrants arrived alongside Scots and English and Quebecois and other trans-Atlantic migrants, as well as Native Hawaiians and other migrants from the Pacific region, and all engaged with First Nations peoples.1 In 1788, Chinese carpenters and labourers encountered Nuu-chah-nulth peoples as they helped build a trading post led by Captain John Meares in Nootka Sound. Historical research in Asian languages is obviously crucial, and several of the articles show how attention to sources in the languages used by trans-Pacific migrants reveals new perspectives.2 Some of the articles place British Columbia in an international context, revealing how events such as the 1907 anti-Asian riots put the province into the middle of global diplomacy and how trans-Pacific migrants have long tied the province to nations and societies in Asia.