Category Archives: History and Everyday Life

Congress 2020, Interrupted: A Brief History of University Codes of Conduct

Will Langford Congress 2020 is cancelled. But before the conference is forgotten, let’s ponder the anti-racism Congress that never was. At last year’s gathering, in a brazen act of racial profiling, a participant harassed political scientist Shelby McPhee and falsely accused the Black graduate student of theft. Following an investigation, the perpetrator was issued a ban for violating the Congress… Read more »

Jean Little: Celebrating Friendship and Kindness

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By Catherine Carstairs One of Canada’s best-known children’s writers, Jean Little, passed away at the beginning of April at the age of 88.  With COVID-19 dominating the news cycle, her death attracted little attention. And yet, as we live through a severe epidemic, perhaps we need Jean Little’s wisdom more than ever.  Little created a world in which injustice was… Read more »

Feasting with the Imagination Now and in the Second World War

Suzanne Evans We are living through a time made for feasting with the imagination, an act precedented in Second World War prison camps. “Am cooking Mum’s old favourite tonight – scalloped potatoes on ham. It makes me think of her every time I make it.” Over the past few weeks of pandemic lockdown my sister has reverted to our mother’s… Read more »

The Branded Puerto Rican Drink with Cuban Connections

Carlos A. Santiago In 1893, Puerto Rican poet Lola Rodriguez referred to Cuba and Puerto Rico as “two wings of the same bird.” Both islands experienced colonialism under the Spanish empire and were exploited by the hegemonic power of the United States. Although they have had similar experiences, these two islands have historically been viewed differently. During the nineteenth and… Read more »

To NARA is Human; To Forgive, Divine

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Allana Mayer Historically-minded folks will likely have seen the flare-up and fizzle-out of scandal around the USA’s National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in January. A Washington Post reporter noted that applique images on the walls of the NARA Museum lobby had blurred out words on signs held by Women’s March protesters in 2017. The blurred words included “pussy” as… Read more »

Stand! Show and Tell (and Sing)

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David Frank The catalogue of labour history films in Canada is a small one. There is a very good body of work in the documentary tradition, but you will not need a long weekend to screen all of the dramatic films related to this country’s labour and working-class history.[1] To this shelf, we can now add a new film based… Read more »

Staging History

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By Craig Heron Historians have become increasingly attuned to the role of performance in history. Many of us have written about the pomp and pageantry of the powerful, the theatre of the high courts, the processions of urban respectability, the rituals of resistance among the poor and powerless. We have been much more reticent, however, about using theatre to present… Read more »

When Historical Time Meets Real Time: Mourning Harry Tanner

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Karen Dubinsky Harry Tanner died November 7 2019 at the age of 85. I’ve only known him a couple of years. However, I’ve known him his whole life. I knew his parents, his father a Bank of Nova Scotia manager stationed in Havana in the 1940s and 1950s, where Harry grew up. I know Harry’s excitement about life in 1960s… Read more »

A Year of Inaction: Ontario Education and the TRC

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Evan Habkirk When the Conservative government under Doug Ford came into power in June 2018, they immediately began rolling back curriculum revisions by the Ontario Ministry of Education. Two subject areas affected by these actions were the new sexual education curriculum and the addition of increased Indigenous content to the social studies, history, geography and civics curricula. Although parents, educators,… Read more »

Eating History: Canada War Cake

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By Sophie Hicks This is the fourth post in a summer series exploring societal, community, and familial connections to food and food history. See the series introduction post here. An earlier version of this post appeared on The Canadian Cooking Chronicles, as part of a final project for an Archives Practicum class. As an unapologetic fan of Ian Mosby’s work… Read more »