Skip to main content Accessibility help
Hostname: page-component-7ccbd9845f-wr4x4 Total loading time: 0.439 Render date: 2023-01-29T03:08:04.585Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

Reproducing Colonialism: Subject Formation and Talk Radio in English Canada

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 June 2011

Andreas Krebs*
Andreas Krebs, Research and Communications, Samara, 33 Prince Arthur Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M5R 1B2,


Abstract. This paper examines how two talk radio programs—CBC's Sounds Like Canada and Corus Radio Network's Adler Online—work to reproduce colonialism in Canada through formation of colonial subjectivity. It proceeds through analysis of listener experience informed by postcolonial theory, and the work of Deleuze and Guattari. The mobilization of affective states by these programs, specifically sympathy and outrage, has important implications for how colonialism continues to dictate many of the terms of Canadian political discourse. If colonialism continues to be reproduced in our daily interactions with the media, this poses serious threats to Canadian multiculturalism and to the potential for realizing Aboriginal political goals.

Résumé. Cet article explore la manière dont deux émissions-débats radiophoniques (Sounds Like Canada de CBC ainsi que Adler Online du réseau Corus Radio) participent à la reproduction du colonialisme au Canada en renforçant la formation d'une subjectivité coloniale. Cette recherche propose une analyse de l'expérience d'un auditeur développée conjointement avec les théories postcoloniales et les oeuvres de Deleuze et Guattari. La mobilisation d'états affectifs, plus précisément la sympathie ou l'indignation, qu'engendre l'écoute de ces émissions-débats a de nombreuses implications sur la façon dont le colonialisme continue de dicter plusieurs éléments clés du discours politique canadien. La perpétuation du colonialisme au cours de nos interactions quotidiennes avec les médias pose un risque non négligeable pour le multiculturalisme canadien et pour l'atteinte éventuelle des objectifs politiques des communautés autochtones.

Research Article
Copyright © Canadian Political Science Association 2011

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


Alfred, Taiaiake. 1999. Peace, Power, Righteousness: An Indigenous Manifesto. Don Mills: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Arneil, Barbara. 1994. “Trade, Plantations, and Property: John Locke and the Economic Defense of Colonialism.” Journal of the History of Ideas 55(4): 591609.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Asch, Michael. 1988. Home and Native Land: Aboriginal Rights and the Canadian Constitutions. Scarborough: Nelson.Google Scholar
Barker, David C. 2002. Rushed to Judgment. New York: Columbia University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bhabha, Homi K. 1994. The Location of Culture. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
Borrows, John. 2002. Recovering Canada: The Resurgence of Indigenous Law. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar
Buckley, Steve. 2000. “Radio's new horizons: Democracy and popular communication in the digital age.” International Journal of Cultural Studies 3(2): 180–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bureau of Broadcast Measurement. 2008. Top Line Radio Statistics, S1 2008 (January 7-March 2, 2008). (January 14, 2010).Google Scholar
Cairns, Alan. 2000. Citizens Plus: Aboriginal Peoples and the Canadian State. Vancouver: UBC Press.Google Scholar
Campbell, David. 2007. “Geopolitics and Visuality: Sighting the Darfur Conflict.” Political Geography 26(4): 357–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Canadian Human Rights Commission. 2008. “Overview.” (October 24, 2008).Google Scholar
Coates, Ken. 2000. The Marshall Decision and Native Rights. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queens University Press.Google Scholar
Connolly, William E. 2005. Pluralism. Durham NC: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Crisell, Andrew. 1994. Understanding Radio. 2nd ed.London: Routledge.Google Scholar
Cruikshank, Barbara. 1999. The Will to Empower: Democratic Citizens and Other Subjects. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Dale, Ann and Naylor, Ted. 2005. “Dialogue and Public Space: An Exploration of Radio and Information Communications Technologies.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 38(1): 203–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Deleuze, Gilles. 1983. Nietzsche and Philosophy. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
Deleuze, Gilles and Guattari, Félix. 1983. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Robert Hurley, Mark Seem and Helen R. Lane. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
Deleuze, Gilles and Guattari, Félix. 1987. A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Massumi, Brian. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
Denis, Claude. 1997. We Are Not You: First Nations and Canadian Modernity. Peterborough: Broadview Press.Google ScholarPubMed
Fanon, Frantz. 1952. Peau noire, masques blancs. Paris: Editions du Seuil.Google Scholar
Fanon, Frantz. 2002 [1961]. Les Damnés de la Terre. Paris: La Découverte.Google Scholar
Flanagan, Tom. 2000. First Nations? Second Thoughts. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press.Google Scholar
Furniss, Elizabeth. 1999. The Burden of History: Colonialism and the Frontier Myth in a Rural Canadian Community. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.Google Scholar
Gingras, Anne-Marie. 2007. “La question de la liberté d'expression dans les démêlés judiciaries et les revers administratifs de CHOI-FM.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 40(1): 79100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goldberg, David Theo. 1999. “Call and Response: Sports, Talk Radio, and the Death of Democracy.” In Soundbite Culture: the Death of Discourse in a Wired World, ed. Slayden, David and Whillock, Rita Kirk. Thousand Oaks CA: Sage.Google Scholar
Goldberg, David Theo. 2002. The Racial State. Malden MA: Blackwell.Google Scholar
Habermas, Jürgen. 1989. The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society. Cambridge MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
Hall, Stuart. 1980. “Encoding/decoding.” In Culture, Media, Language: Working Papers in Cultural Studies 1972–79, ed. Hall, Stuart, Hobson, Dorothy, Lane, Andrew and Willis, Paul. London: Hutchinson.Google Scholar
Harper's Quebec chief apologizes after Algonquins offended.” 2008. CBC. September 18, 2008. (February 7, 2009).Google Scholar
Hartley, John. 2000. “Radiocracy: Sound and Citizenship.” International Journal of Cultural Studies 3(2): 153–59.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Heron, Barbara. 2007. Desire for Development: Whiteness, Gender, and the Helping Imperative. Waterloo ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.Google Scholar
Krebs, Andreas. 2009. “Le Corps sans Organes. Mobilisation pour une méthodologie d'observation sociale.” In Contr'hommage pour Gilles Deleuze, ed. Giroux, Dalie, Lemieux, R. and Chenier, P.L.. Québec: Les Presses de l'Université Laval.Google Scholar
Liberal MP lauded by white supremacists.” 2008. CBC. February 1, 2008. (October 24, 2008).Google Scholar
Manning, Erin. 2003. Ephemeral Territories: Representing Nation, Home and Identity in Canada. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
Murphy, Michael. 2001. Culture and the Courts: A New Direction in Canadian Jurisprudence on Aboriginal Rights? Canadian Journal of Political Science 34(1): 109–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nandy, Ashis. 1983. The Intimate Enemy: Loss and Recovery of Self Under Colonialism. Delhi: Oxford UP.Google Scholar
Page, Benjamin I. 1996. Who Deliberates? Mass Media in Modern Democracy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Patton, Paul. 2000. Deleuze and the Political. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Philp, Margaret. 2007. “Plight of Natives Hits Home.” The Globe and Mail (Toronto), February 2, 2007.Google Scholar
Radio listening. June 26, 2007.” Statistics Canada. 2007. (September 24, 2008).Google Scholar
Rai, Amit S. 2002. Rule of Sympathy: Sentiment, Race and Power 1750–1850. New York: Palgrave.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reed-Danahay, Deborah. 1997. “Introduction.” In Auto/Ethnography: Rewriting the Self and the Social, ed. Reed-Danahay, Deborah. Oxford: Berg.Google Scholar
Sampert, Shannon. 2009. “Jock Radio/Talk Radio/Shock Radio.” In Mediating Canadian Politics, ed. Sampert, Shannon and Trimble, Linda. Toronto: Pearson.Google Scholar
Spry, Tami. 2001. “Performing Autoethnography: An Embodied Methodological Praxis.” Qualitative Inquiry 7(6): 706–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stoler, Ann Laura. 1995. Race and the Education of Desire: Foucault's History of Sexuality and The Colonial Order of Things. Durham: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
Tully, James. 1995. Strange Multiplicity: Constitutionalism in an Age of Diversity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Turner, Dale. 2006. This is Not a Peace Pipe: Towards a Critical Indigenous Philosophy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google ScholarPubMed
Young, Robert J.C. 1995. Colonial Desire: Hybridity in Theory, Culture and Race. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the or variations. ‘’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Reproducing Colonialism: Subject Formation and Talk Radio in English Canada
Available formats

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Reproducing Colonialism: Subject Formation and Talk Radio in English Canada
Available formats

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Reproducing Colonialism: Subject Formation and Talk Radio in English Canada
Available formats

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *