In 1990, Supreme Court Justice Bertha Wilson proclaimed that the Canadian Charter of Rights 'is and must continue to be a vital force in molding the lives of Canadians.' In this collection of original essays commissioned by the Centre for Constitutional Studies, University of Alberta, legal and political scholars evaluate the impact of the Charter on life in Canada since 1982.
Other works have focused on the jurisprudence of the Charter - its internal coherence or its implications for the role of courts. Charting the Consequences considers 'externalities' - the effect of the Charter and its jurisprudence on non-constitutional aspects of the law and on the dynamics of legislative power, provincial politics, and social movements. Specific contexts are examined, including certain provinces, economic rights, taxation, First Nations, sexual orientation, social movements, private law, access to justice, and political science. Patterns become manifest across contexts. For one, the editors identify three strata of actors in society - ranging from the powerful to the least powerful - who are affected by the Charter in differing degrees. Secondly, they expose how the actors' influences on Charter interpretation are determined, in some measure, by the magnitude of their social and political power.
Charting the Consequences offers a fresh perspective on the Charter. It will generate new thinking and scholarship among lawyers, political scientists, and public policy makers.
About the authors
DAVID SCHNEIDERMAN is the Executive Director of the Centre for Constitutional Studies at the University of Alberta. He is the editor of six books and the author of many journal and newspaper articles.
Kate Sutherland was born in Scotland, immigrated to Canada as a child, and grew up in Saskatoon. She studied first at the University of Saskatchewan, then at Harvard Law School. She is the author of two collections of short stories, Summer Reading (winner, Saskatchewan Book Award for Best First Book) and All In Together Girls, and the poetry collection, How To Draw A Rhinoceros (shortlisted for a Creative Writing Book Award by the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment). Her stories and poems have appeared in various magazines and anthologies including Best Canadian Poetry and Best American Experimental Writing. She has done residencies at Hawthornden Castle in Scotland and at the Leighton Artist Studios in Banff. She lives in Toronto where she is a professor and conducts research in the fields of Tort Law, Feminist Legal Theory, and Law and Literature at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University.
Other titles by David Schneiderman
Red, White, and Kind of Blue?
The Conservatives and the Americanization of Canadian Constitutional Culture
Media Coverage of the Supreme Court of Canada
The Quebec Decision
Perspectives on the Supreme Court Ruling on Secession
Police Powers in Canada
The Evolution and Practice of Authority
Social Justice and the Constitution
Perspectives on a Social Union for Canada