The Apology and its Aftermath: National Atonement or the Management of Minorities?

Alia Somani


Although critics have tended to understand official apologies as strategies of containment, I argue that state-acts of atonement also offer considerable opportunities for minority resistance. The very structure of the apology renders it a site of possibility; for, as it closes off the past, it also opens up a door to the future. As case study, I examine Stephen Harper's official apology to the South Asian Canadian community for the 1914 Komagata Maru incident.


Apology; Redress; Resistance; Performativity

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