Viola Desmond Won't Be Budged

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Viola Desmond Won't Be Budged

by Jody Nyasha Warner
Illustrator Richard Rudnicki

Groundwood Books Ltd | September 1, 2010 | Hardcover

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Finalist for the 2011 Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children's Non-Fiction

"On behalf of the Nova Scotia government, I sincerely apologize to Mrs. Viola Desmond's family and to all African Nova Scotians for the racial discrimination she was subjected to by the justice system . . . We recognize today that the act for which Viola Desmond was arrested, was an act of courage, not an offence." -- Darrell Dexter, Premier of Nova Scotia, April 15, 2010

In Nova Scotia, in 1946, an usher in a movie theatre told Viola Desmond to move from her main floor seat up to the balcony. She refused to budge. Viola knew she was being asked to move because she was black. After all, she was the only black person downstairs. All the other black people were up in the balcony. In no time at all, the police arrived and took Viola to jail. The next day she was charged and fined, but she vowed to continue her struggle against such unfair rules. She refused to accept that being black meant she couldn't sit where she wanted.

Viola's determination gave strength and inspiration to her community at the time. She is an unsung hero of the North American struggle against injustice and racial discrimination whose story deserves to be widely known.

The African Canadian community in Nova Scotia is one of Canada's oldest and most established black communities. Despite their history and contributions to the province the people in this community have a long experience of racially based injustice.

Like Claudette Colvin and Rosa Parks, who many years later, in 1955, refused to give up their bus seats in Alabama, Desmond's act of refusal awakened people to the unacceptable nature of racism and began and process of bringing an end to racial segregation in Canada.

An afterword provides a glimpse of African Canadian history.

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 32 pages, 10 × 8 × 0.42 in

Published: September 1, 2010

Publisher: Groundwood Books Ltd

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0888997795

ISBN - 13: 9780888997791

Appropriate for ages: 5

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– More About This Product –

Viola Desmond Won't Be Budged

by Jody Nyasha Warner
Illustrator Richard Rudnicki

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 32 pages, 10 × 8 × 0.42 in

Published: September 1, 2010

Publisher: Groundwood Books Ltd

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0888997795

ISBN - 13: 9780888997791

About the Book

In 1946, Viola Desmond bought a movie ticket at the Roseland Theatre in Nova Scotia. After settling into a main floor seat, an usher came by and told her to move, because her ticket was only good for the balcony. She offered to pay the difference in price but was refused: "You people have to sit in the upstairs section." Viola refused to move. She was hauled off to jail, but her actions gave strength and inspiration to Canada's black community. Vibrant illustrations and oral-style prose tell Viola's story with sympathy and historical accuracy.

From the Publisher

Finalist for the 2011 Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children's Non-Fiction

"On behalf of the Nova Scotia government, I sincerely apologize to Mrs. Viola Desmond's family and to all African Nova Scotians for the racial discrimination she was subjected to by the justice system . . . We recognize today that the act for which Viola Desmond was arrested, was an act of courage, not an offence." -- Darrell Dexter, Premier of Nova Scotia, April 15, 2010

In Nova Scotia, in 1946, an usher in a movie theatre told Viola Desmond to move from her main floor seat up to the balcony. She refused to budge. Viola knew she was being asked to move because she was black. After all, she was the only black person downstairs. All the other black people were up in the balcony. In no time at all, the police arrived and took Viola to jail. The next day she was charged and fined, but she vowed to continue her struggle against such unfair rules. She refused to accept that being black meant she couldn't sit where she wanted.

Viola's determination gave strength and inspiration to her community at the time. She is an unsung hero of the North American struggle against injustice and racial discrimination whose story deserves to be widely known.

The African Canadian community in Nova Scotia is one of Canada's oldest and most established black communities. Despite their history and contributions to the province the people in this community have a long experience of racially based injustice.

Like Claudette Colvin and Rosa Parks, who many years later, in 1955, refused to give up their bus seats in Alabama, Desmond's act of refusal awakened people to the unacceptable nature of racism and began and process of bringing an end to racial segregation in Canada.

An afterword provides a glimpse of African Canadian history.

About the Author

Jody Nyasha Warner is a writer, editor and former librarian. She lives in Toronto with her two children.

Richard Rudnicki has illustrated several award-winning children's books. Viola Desmond Won't Be Budged! was a finalist for the Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children's Non-Fiction, a finalist for the Mayor's Award for Excellence in Book Illustration (Halifax), and a finalist for the Silver Birch Award, and Gracie, the Public Gardens Duck won the Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration and was a finalist for the APMA Best Atlantic Published Book Award. Richard is well known for his paintings of Nova Scotia. He also teaches figure drawing and portraiture and gives school workshops. He lives in Halifax.

Appropriate for ages: 5

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