The Toronto Reference Library hosted a public discussion titled “I’ll Burn That Bridge When I Get to It” on December 5, 2023. The discussion focused on the freedom of unpopular academic authors to express their ideas.
Controversial authors Norman Finkelstein, the author of The Holocaust Industry, and Christian Parenti, an investigative journalist and professor of economics, talked about the backlashes against their work.
B’nai Brith Canada, a Jewish organization, James Pasternak, a Toronto city councillor, and others urged the library to cancel the discussion because they disapprove of Finkelstein’s views about the Holocaust and Israel. Their efforts failed.
Staff members of the National Post report:
In the Toronto Star, Raju Mudhar reports:
Joshua Freeman of CTV News reports:
In the National Post, Chris Selley comments:
Andria Spindel of the Canadian Antisemitism Education Foundation and Vickery Bowles of the Toronto Public Library exchange email:
The Book and Periodical Council was formed in 1975 as the Book and Periodical Development Council to provide a venue for members to discuss industry issues, address mutual concerns and undertake projects for the benefit of Canadian writing and publishing.