HOLT, Simma




Author Tags: Doukhobors, Journalism, Politics, Women

Born in Vegreville, Alberta, Simma Holt is a former Liberal MP for Vancouver-Kingsway and Vancouver Sun newspaperwoman whose cynically packaged Terror in the Name of God (M&S 1964) encouraged intolerance of B.C. Doukhobors. The paperback cover of Holt's book featured a colour photograph of a large, naked woman standing outside a burning building. It excluded the interior subtitle 'The Story of the Sons of Freedom Doukhobors'. This omission enhanced the misconception that all Doukhobors were unruly nudists and troublemakers. Dedicated to the RCMP's Special D Squad that was investigating the Doukhobors during the period when Sons of Freedom radicals were engaging in arson to express their disdain for materialism, Terror in the Name of God was a catalyst for George Woodcock and Ivan Avakumovic to write their in-depth history of the pacifist sect.

Other books by Simma Holt are Sex and the Teen Age Revolution, The Devil's Butler (Random House, 1972) -- about the abduction of a young boy by the Satan's Angels motorcycle club -- and The Other Mrs. Diefenbaker (1982), a biography which reveals the private life of John Diefenbaker's wife. Born in 1922, Simma Holt graduated from University of Manitoba and joined the Vancouver Sun in 1944. After 30 years of journalism, she was elected as a Liberal MP for one term (1974-1979) and served on the National Parole Board. Inducted into the Canadian News Hall of Fame in 1996, she received the Order of Canada in 1997. The Leon and Simma Holt Arts and Science scholarship has been offered annually at Langara College in Vancouver.

Simma Holt also published Memoirs of a Loose Cannon (Seraphim Editions 2008) launched on November 25, 2008 at the Vancouver Lawn Tennis & Badminton Club.

[BCBW 2008) "Doukhobors" "Politics" "Women" "Journalism"