Loney takes issue with popular attitudes toward race and gender, whereby to be born a woman or a member of a visible minority is to enter life at a disadvantage and therefore be entitled to compensatory provision. Arguing that social class not group membership determines life chances, he refutes the claims of those who detect systemic prejudice and discrimination and reap considerable public subsidy in return. From the release of the Abella report to the present, Loney sets the growth of federal involvement in preferential hiring in the context of a growing industry whose success depends on the constant affirmation of group grievance based on gender or race. He argues that preferential hiring policies and a muddled multiculturalism leads to the continual assertion of the primacy of race even as the government officially opposes racial thinking. Loney discusses many up-to-date and high profile examples, including Bob Rae's preoccupation with skin and gender politics, Brian Mulroney's attempts to strengthen the Conservative Party's ethnic constituency by funding ethnic groups and maintaining high levels of immigration, and former defence minister David Colinette's extensive use of public funds to court ethnic voters in his Toronto constituency. The Pursuit of Division will be essential reading for anyone concerned about where government-mandated policies on equity and multiculturalism may be taking us and about the implications of emphasizing the politics of difference over that of shared community.