Category Archives: Series

Confederation as an intra-Christian pact

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This is the fourth post in a two week series in partnership with Canada Watch on the Confederation Debates By David Koffman From the vantage point of 2016, the Confederation debates in the Province of Canada show remarkable clarity about and commitment to the ideal of religious accommodation and liberty. At the same time, the debaters’ vision of pluralism and their policy… Read more »

An example for the world? Confederation and French Canadians

This is the third post in a two week series in partnership with Canada Watch on the Confederation Debates By Marcel Martel While debating the merits of the new constitutional agreement in 1865, supporters in the Canadian Legislative Assembly focused on the difficult challenges involved in creating the larger federation and the various benefits that the new Dominion of Canada supposedly offered… Read more »

The Atlantic provinces and the Confederation debates of 1865

This is the second post in a two week series in partnership with Canada Watch on the Confederation Debates By Philip Girard The phrase “Atlantic Canada” is of relatively recent vintage, having been coined as a convenient way of referring to the four eastern provinces after Newfoundland joined Confederation in 1949.[1] Before 1949 no one spoke of Atlantic Canada. In the debates… Read more »

Reconsidering the debates over Canadian confederation

This is the first in a two week series in partnership with Canada Watch on the Confederation Debates By Colin Coates and Philip Girard With the 150th anniversary of Confederation approaching, it is an appropriate time to review the processes and historical contexts that framed the formation of Canada in 1867. The Canada that took shape on July 1, 1867… Read more »

The (im)possibility of raceless equality: blacks as workers and thieves in the Big Hole experience

By Rachel Hatcher [This is the third post in the Learning and unlearning history in South Africa’s public spaces series.] South Africa and its universities have been working for over two decades to eliminate racism from their midst and become metaphoric rainbows of inclusion and equality. This project faces serious challenges from various quarters, some unexpected. Briefly imagine, if you will, growing up… Read more »

The Big Hole of Black Oblivion

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By Rachel Hatcher [This is the second in a series of posts titled “Learning and unlearning history in South Africa’s public spaces”] The Big Hole in Kimberley, in South Africa’s Northern Cape province, somehow manages to tower over the city in a way that is surprising for a big hole in the ground, which is precisely what the Big Hole… Read more »

When History Needs an Intervention

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By Mary Jane McCallum Thank you to Crystal Fraser for guest-editing #AHindigenous at ActiveHistory this week. Her initiative exponentially increased Active History’s content by Indigenous people and likely its Indigenous readership. To Leanne Simpson, Zoe Todd, Claire Thomson, Daniel Sims, Adam Gaudry, Anna Huard, Lianne Charlie, Norma Dunning and Billy-Ray Belcourt, thank you for your thoughtful and inspiring posts. Each piece… Read more »

Political Depression in a Time of Reconciliation

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By Billy-Ray Belcourt It’s tough: knowing that you might not get the world you want and the world that wants you back, that your bones might never stop feeling achy and fragile from the wear and tear of mere existence, from the hard labour of getting through the day. Ours are bodies that have been depleted by time, that have been… Read more »

“Not That Kind of Indian:” The Problem with Generalizing Indigenous Peoples in Contemporary Scholarship and Pedagogy

By Daniel Sims   As a recent hire at the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus, the student newspaper, The Dagligtale, interviewed me. Upon reading the printed story – and much to my surprise – I found that my home community of Tsay Keh Dene had become Tsay Keh Dane, but that it was also a reserve. The first error, I attributed… Read more »

Holding Our Lands and Places: The Everyday Politics of Indigenous Land and Identity

By Claire Thomson   On a warm September day, I looked down into a coulee from where my horse and I stood on a breezy prairie hill. Eight heifers crashed through the coulee, making a trail through the brush one after another. This was a tricky pasture to navigate since the hills are steep and rocky and also dense, filled with… Read more »