The Tyee: Article on Mixed Marriage aka inter-racial marriage by Amy Chow
She tells the story of a nice Canadian boy eloping with a nice Canadian
girl because his mother, has always wanted him to marry a girl that
would be “more appropriate” for him and the family. It's a familiar
story – not a new story… but one that most Canadians could related to
In this case, the boy is of Jewish ancestry and the girl is of Chinese
I grew up in Vancouver, first meeting people from mixed marriages in
the early sixties when I was a child. “Chinnie” was somebody who always
was hanging out at my great-grandma's house – one of her best friends.
She was white. I have recently bumped into her daughter Evelyn. It's
great that we have shared history of our elders.
Mixed race marriages is common place on both sides of my family. On my
mother's side, there has been a mixed race marriage in every generation
since our elder Rev. Chan Yu Tan arrived in Canada in 1896. There was
his son Luke, who became an actor in Hollywood. There were his
grandsons Henry and Art. Incidently it was Art who married a First
Nations woman, and their daughter Rhonda has become the elected band
chief for the Qayqayt Nation (New Westminster), that she singlehandedly
My mother's youngest brother married a woman of Scottish-English
background, steeped in Ontario Canadian heritage. 9 of my 12 cousins on
my mom's side have married caucasians + my brother. And on my father's
side, 6 of my 9 cousins married caucasians.
I was the only person out of my maternal cousins that married somebody
of Chinese Canadian descent. It should have worked out… our
grandparents had known each other, as had our parents, our aunts and
uncles, our cousins, and even their children…. but it was not to be.
And today, I am spending my 2nd Christmas with my Canadian girlfriend
of British ancestry, and her parents. I haven't seen another Asian
since I left the Kelowna airport two days ago. There haven't been any
racial clashes. We talk about the issues that I am involved in such as
the Save Kogawa House campaign and the Chinese Canadian head tax – even
with their caucasian friends.
We listened to my friends Joy Kogawa and Ann-Marie Metten on CBC radio
yesterday, and we read in the newspaper about my friends Bill Chu and
Gabriel Yiu and Thekla Lit who helped organize a Boxing Day press
conference on Head Tax redress. And these are just Canadian issues. And
the 3 dogs love all the hugs they can get. Race isn't an issue for them.
Todd out walking with dogs in Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park.