Margaret Mitchell, MP for Vancouver East from 1979-1993 has published her memoirs in No Laughing Matter: Adventure, Activism & Politics.

The title of the book comes from Mitchell’s own experience broaching the issue of marital abuse. As she writes, “On May 12th I rose in the House to raise the urgent need for government action on a serious and widespread issue. ‘The parliamentary report on battered wives states that one in ten Canadian husbands beat their wives regularly,’ I began. Before I could continue, an uproar of male shouts and laughter erupted, making it impossible for me to be heard. A nearby Tory joked, ‘I don’t beat my wife. Do you, George?’ When the Speaker finally got order, I rose again in fury. ‘Madam Speaker, I do not think this is a laughing matter. What action will the Minister responsible for the Status of Women undertake immediately at the federal level to protect battered women?'”

Having led an extraordinary life of political work, traveling and activism Mitchell’s book is worth a look for anyone wanting to examine Canada’s history or be inspired to create its future.

The book is published by Granville Island Publishing, 2007