In Italics: In Defense of Ethnicity


265 pages
Contains Bibliography
ISBN 1-55071-016-8
DDC 305.85'1071





Reviewed by James S. Frideres

James S. Frideres is associate dean (research) of the Faculty of Social
Sciences at the University of Calgary and the author of Native People in
Canada: Contemporary Conflicts and A World of Communities.


Spanning the last two decades, this collection of essays and interviews
shows the evolution of the author’s ideas about culture, ethnicity,
and pluralism. The book’s primary thesis—that without “experience
from the inside,” there can never be freedom of speech—reflects
D’Alfonso’s concern about the treatment of minority literary works
that do not fit into the mainstream canon. He describes the seemingly
benign censorship of these minority works in the school system
preventing students from discovering alternative voices.

In Italics is not intended to be a scholarly contribution to the field
of ethnic studies. Rather, it is a series of personal
reflections—about cultural issues, the relationship between the
individual and culture, and the ways in which Canadians can contribute
to the making of a just society.


D'Alfonso, Antonio., “In Italics: In Defense of Ethnicity,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 18, 2024,