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Melanie Knight

Dr. Mélanie Knight

Associate Professor & Advisor to the Dean of Arts on Blackness and Black Diasporic Education
EducationBSc, BA (University of New Brunswick), MA (OISE/University of Toronto), PhD (OISE/University of Toronto, Sociology & Equity Studies)
Phone416-979-5000 x554191

It is time to end the terror inflicted on Black lives. Black Lives Matter.

Dr. Mélanie Knight

Areas of Expertise

Black activism; Black collective economic initiatives; Black women business owners


Dr. Knight’s interests are grounded in Black activism/organizing, Black collective economic initiatives, Black women business owners, and the subtext of race and gender in the discourse of enterprise. She has participated in a number of SSHRC and community grants and published in a number of journals and books. Outside of her work in the academy she collaborates with a number of community organizations that deliver programs and advocate for the health and well‐being of Black Canadians. She also supports organizations that promote Black history and heritage. In 2018 she was awarded the Viola Desmond faculty award.

Website:, external link, opens in new window


Graduate Program Membership:

  • Immigration and Settlement Studies
  • Policy Studies

Community & Professional Service:

Recent Publications:

Knight, M., R.N. Ferguson and R. Reece. 2021. “It’s Not Just about Work and Living Conditions”: The Underestimation of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Black Canadian Women., external link, opens in new window Social Sciences 10: 210.

Knight, M. 2020. The demise of a Black organization: The Home Service Association (1921-1965)., external link, opens in new window Canadian Journal of History/Annales canadiennes d’histoire 55(1–2): 1-34.

Esnard, T. and M. Knight (eds.). 2020. Mothering and Entrepreneurship: Global perspectives, Identities and Complexities., external link Toronto: Demeter Press.

Knight, M. 2020. "Reclaiming motherhood and family: How Black mothers use entrepreneurship to nurture family and community" in Mothering and Entrepreneurship: Global Perspectives, Identities and Complexities,, external link edited by T. Esnard and M. Knight. Toronto: Demeter Press.

Knight, M. 2019. “Black Women’s Small Businesses as Historical Spaces of Resistance” in Working Women in Canada: An Intersectional Approach, external link (pp. 203-222), edited by L. Nichols. Toronto: Canadian Scholars Press. 

Knight, M. 2019. "Whiteness invented" in Power and Everyday Practices, 2nd ed., external link (pp. 147-169), edited by D. Brock, A. Martin, R. Raby, and M.P. Thomas. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Knight, M. 2016. Race-ing, classing and gendering racialized women’s participation in entrepreneurship., external link Gender, Work and Organization 23(3): 310-327.