ERNA PARIS is the author of seven acclaimed works of literary non-fiction and the winner of twelve national and international writing awards for her books, feature writing, and radio documentaries. Her works have been published in fourteen countries and translated into eight languages. Long Shadows: Truth, Lies, and History was chosen as one of “The Hundred Most Important Books Ever Written in Canada” by the Literary Review of Canada. In May 2007 Long Shadows inspired the Canadian House of Commons motion to apologize, on behalf of the government, to survivors of Canadian residential schools. In June 2002 it inspired a resolution in the United States House of Representatives to create a monument to American slaves on the Washington Mall. (For more information, please see Awards and Honours.)


Her most recent work, The Sun Climbs Slow: The International Criminal Court and the Struggle for Justice was first on The Globe and Mail's “best book of the year” list and shortlisted for the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing.


Erna is a member of the Honorary Council of the Canadian Centre for International Justice; a member of the Canada Committee of Human Rights Watch; a vice-president (2014) of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association; and a past chair of the Writers' Union of Canada. In 2012, Erna was awarded the World Federalist Movement – Canada World Peace Award.


At long last, Long Shadows: Truth, Lies, and History will soon be a Random House of Canada e-book. On sale by the end of December, 2014.

Erna’s best-selling, award-winning book, The End of Days: A Story of Tolerance, Tyranny, and the Expulsion of the Jews from Spain, will be re-published in an updated edition by Cormorant Books, Toronto. The new title is: From Tolerance to Tyranny: A Cautionary Tale from Fifteenth-Century Spain
Pre-order at

Erna is thrilled to be honoured by University College, University of Toronto, as a “UC Alumni of Influence” 2014. Please follow the link for further information about other honorees and the gala dinner, which will take place on November 6, 2014.

UC Alumni of Influence 2014

Thursday, October 2 2014, Globe and Mail

A new edition of Erna Paris’s book From Tolerance to Tyranny: A Cautionary Tale from Fifteenth-Century Spain will be published in January.

In 1979 and 1980, the government of Canada admitted 50,000 Vietnamese refugees. Ordinary Canadians were invited to participate in the boat people program. My parents and our extended relatives and friends raised enough money to sponsor a family. They were diligent workers: Before long, they were driving a better car than we were. [more]

Saturday August 9, 2014, Globe and Mail

Are we witnessing a hollowing out of the global rule of law and other norms that have provided a framework for peace since the end of the Second World War? It is true that the laws, treaties, statutes, and regulations – so reluctantly negotiated by nations anxious to maintain their sovereignty and rights – have often been honoured in the breach; but until recently the breach, itself, was seen as an aberration, as a subject of fierce international debate.

Less so now, it seems. As postwar configurations of power shift and new pockets of violence erupt, international institutions seem less able to make a difference. In consequence, the world is becoming a lot more dangerous – again. [more]