Category Archives: Canadian history

You Can Blame Mackenzie King for Ford

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By Adam Coombs Doug Ford invoking the Notwithstanding Clause to slash the size of Toronto City Council generated fiery responses from both supporters and detractors. Regardless of where one stood on the issue, all commentators were quick to argue that their side was the one protecting democratic norms and practices while their opponents were undermining them. Premier Ford made this… Read more »

Not so Accidental: Farmworkers, Car Crashes, and Capitalist Agriculture

By Edward Dunsworth  Early last month, near the southern Italian city of Foggia, sixteen migrant farmworkers from various African countries were killed in two separate car accidents. In both cases, vans taking migrants back to camp after work collided with trucks carrying tomatoes from the very fields they had spent the day toiling in. The tragedy brought international media scrutiny… Read more »

Trans Mountain and the Trudeau Legacy

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By James Cullingham In 1973 the Supreme Court of Canada sent a fundamental challenge to Canadian governments in its Calder decision. The case focused on the Aboriginal rights of Frank Calder as a representative of the Nisga’a people. The case was argued by Thomas Berger. While the court was split and the decision did not represent an outright victory, the… Read more »

This is Not the First Time Family Reunification has Relied on a Lottery

By Jennine Hurl-Eamon The Liberal Government recently decided to scrap the much-maligned lottery system to decide whether or not Canadians could sponsor parents and grandparents to immigrate to Canada.  This is not the first time that government policy on family reunification has relied on a lottery. The practice has deep roots that go back more than two hundred years to Britain’s… Read more »

Remembering the Prague Spring Refugees

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By Jan Raska The year 1968 is synonymous with protest and social change. This August, the world marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia and the suppression of the Prague Spring. As a result of this sudden crisis, Canada resettled close to 12,000 refugees from Czechoslovakia between September 1968 and January 1969. This movement of individuals… Read more »

Memory, History, Monuments, and Mennonites: Or, what Winkler, Manitoba might teach us about dealing with historical and moral complexity in public commemoration

By Matthew Neufeld I am against removing statues of controversial figures from our history.  I think removals are misguided because they amplify rather than diminish the moral charge of public commemoration. Instead of removing monuments that might provoke emotional pain among some members of historically marginalized groups or foster moral unease in the consciences of Canadians with European ancestry, I… Read more »

What’s In a Monument? Part II: The Edward Cornwallis Monument and Reconciliation

“What’s in a Monument?” is based on a public lecture delivered on March 11 in the History Matters Series organized by the University of Calgary History Department and the Calgary Public Library. We recommend that you read yesterday’s post by Jewel Spangler about the Robert E. Lee monument in Charlottesville before Part II because it provides the theoretical framework for… Read more »

Remember/Resist/Redraw #16: Radical Bookshops in 1930s Montréal

In the spring, the Graphic History Collective re-launched Remember / Resist / Redraw: A Radical History Poster Project as an ongoing series. Earlier this week, we released RRR poster #16 by Adèle Clapperton-Richard and Andrée Lévesque, a bilingual poster that looks at radical bookshops in 1930s Montréal as important spaces of activist education and organizing. We also created a list… Read more »

Fire in the Belly: A Short Reflection on the Late Stan Rogers

By Ann Walton Recently, I’ve started to view Stan Rogers through a different prism. Listen to the late folk singer’s music and you’ll discover not only a stunning songwriter, but a passionate historian whose work was inseparable from the history of his country. Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s two young brothers from Hamilton toured Canada and the United States,… Read more »