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Lecture 14

Lecture 14: Ethnic Minorities During the Depression, and During the Second World War

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Ian Radforth

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Lecture 14: Ethnic Minorities During the Depression, and During the Second World War
-hard times: the Great Depression, 1929-1939
-the Second World War, 1939-1945
-closing the door
-1929: 168 000 arrivals in Canada
-1936: 11 000 arrivals in Canada
-1943: 7000 arrivals in Canada
-refusing naturalization
-immigration quiet low during this time, fell in 1930, and stayed quiet low during the 1930s with
the Great Depression, and continued through the war years
-not till 1947-1948, did immigration rise again
-Canada second-hardest hit after the US during the Depression
-severe job loss, agri disasters, and prices fell
-ppl not free to leave their home countries in Euro, much occupied by the German
-the Cnd. immigration offices shut down in Euro
-travel dangerous anyways, like U-Boat attacks
-transport hard to arrange, ships needed for the war effort
-the Canada gov’t starting in the early 1930s made it more diff. for immigrants to come
-in 1931, no one could come unless you had substantial money
-even white experienced farmers were not wanted unless they had a lot of money
-most of the immigrants in the 1930s, were the wives and children of the men who immigrated in
the 1920s, through family re-unificatin
-lots of deportations, esp. in the mid-1930s, nearly matched the numbers coming in
-usu. the unemployed, not naturalized seen as a burden on taxpayers
-also saw them as a political threat
-also made it more difficult for ppl to become naturalized citizens (for ppl other then from the
Brit. Empire)
-was supposed to be after 5 yrs, could apply
-but now said no, during the 1930s, in 1934 (?), 18 000 ppl tried but 90% rejected
-made it difficult, couldnt often return to home countries, or go to the
-Jews tried to immigrate after Hitler came into power in 1933, but Canada refused many
-prior to policy of mass extermination during WWII, Nazis tried to force them out
through numerous anti-Semitic laws
-by 1938, 800 000 German Jews trying to find new homes
-but numerous barriers, no longer had property or wealth, and so werent
wanted anywhere
-the Jewish Refugee Crisis of the 1930s
-the plight of the German Jews
-kicked out of Germany, with no land or money
-Canadas response
-no formal refugee policy, just wanted those who could benefit the country
-wanted rich farmers
-poli. considerations, while the Mennonites of the 1800s thought to fit in, thought
the Jews wouldnt fit in and cause poli. grief
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