Category Archives: Global History

How Does History Help Explain Bitcoins?

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By Jonathan McQuarrie Lately, Bitcoins have received considerable attention from the media. The recent failure of the Tokyo-based Mt. Gox exchange, where users could exchange their Bitcoins for national currencies, sparked particular concern. The website managed to lose some 850,000 Bitcoins, which at the time were valued at approximately $400 million. For the last month, proponents of Bitcoins, such as… Read more »

Bones, Ghosts and Human Rights: How Science Can Further Justice

A public lecture by Luis Fondebrider, recorded at the University of Saskatchewan on February 10, 2014 Luis Fondebrider teaches in the Department of Legal Medicine at the University of Buenos Aires. He is President of the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team and has been involved in international tribunals on political violence and human rights, focusing on the use of forensic anthropology in… Read more »

International Women’s Day (IWD) and Human Rights 2014

By Veronica Strong-Boag Author’s note: This post was commissioned as an IWD blog by the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. It was initially approved and posted by the Museum on 4 March 2014. It was, however, almost immediately withdrawn as ‘Communications’ at the Museum deemed the one line comment on the current federal Conservative government unacceptable as written. The offer… Read more »

The Aestheticization of Politics at the Olympic Games

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By Eric Wright Disclaimer: I am an athlete and sports fan, despite what this article may lead you to believe. The 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics has been embroiled in controversy from the start.  The games will be the most corrupt in history based on dollar value, with an estimated one third of the games’ $51 billion price tag attributable to… Read more »

Lessons from History: Santayana vs. Vonnegut

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“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” George Santayana, 1905 I hear variations of this quote all the time. Often in praise of what I do for a living: “You’re a historian, well great, cause if we don’t know history, we’re doomed to repeat it!” In the face of this good will, I never take the… Read more »

For an Artist-Historian, Film-Making is a Sea-Change

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By George Tombs I recently completed The Blinding Sea, a 52-minute high-definition historical film about the most successful polar explorer of all time, Roald Amundsen (1872-1928). He was first through the Northwest Passage, first to the South Pole, second eastbound through the Northeast Passage and first confirmed to have reached the North Pole. This was no armchair exercise for me…. Read more »

Talk: Dr. Jacalyn Duffin – “Historian as Activist: Tales from the Medical Trench”

http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Duffin-Historian-as-Activist.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Katherine Zwicker Dr. Jacalyn Duffin began her career in medicine, practicing hematology in Ontario.  A move to France, though, prompted Duffin to pursue a Ph.D. in history and, since her return to Canada more than two decades ago, she has balanced a career as a historian and practicing physician.  As the Hannah Chair… Read more »

Ten Books to Contextualize Global Warming

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By Stacy Nation-Knapper, Andrew Watson, and Sean Kheraj Last year, Nature’s Past, the Canadian environmental history podcast, published a special series called, “Histories of Canadian Environmental Issues”. Each episode focused on a different contemporary environmental issue and featured interviews and discussions with historians whose research explains the context and background. Following up on that project, we are publishing six articles… Read more »

Understanding the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report from the Perspective of a Climate Historian

By Dagomar Degroot (this post originally appeared on Degroot’s personal website) Established in 1988 by the UN and the World Meteorological Organization, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a scientific body that periodically summarizes the scholarly understanding of the world’s climate. In 2007, the panel’s fourth assessment report outlined in stark terms the likelihood of anthropogenic global warming. Since then,… Read more »

Chemical Weapons and Conventional Bombs

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By Jim Clifford Over the past few weeks that world has watched as the United States threatened to bomb Syria to punish the Assad Regime for using chemical weapons against his population. I, like many other people have wondered why chemical weapons are a “Red Line”, but deadly and efficient conventional weapons remain a widely used and legitimate. Conventional attacks… Read more »