Category Archives: History in the News

An illegal referendum?

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Ben Bryce On October 1, the Government of Catalonia held a referendum over the question: “Do you want Catalonia to be an independent state and in the form of a republic?” English Canadian coverage of the referendum has been thin compared to what you find in Quebec. The majority of English Canadians might not like referendums and they may not… Read more »

A Breakdown of Democracy in Catalonia

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Aitana Guia It’s 2019. California just voted to secede from the Union in a referendum.  Only 42 percent of the electorate voted, but since 90 percent of them voted in favor of independence, the California Governor has unilaterally declared independence. The other 49 state legislatures have not been consulted. The US House of Representatives and Senate have not been asked… Read more »

The Monument War: Not just about “History”

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Matthew Sears From Robert E. Lee to John A. Macdonald, the Monument War has now become an international conflict. To those shocked by how quickly this battle has escalated, the anti-monument agitators seem to be the 21st century’s version of 20th century totalitarians, wanting to erase or distort history so that it conforms to the spirit and prejudices of the… Read more »

“More of the Same”: Senator Beyak & Canada’s Refusal to Learn History

By Mercedes Peters For the second time in a matter of months, Conservative Senator Lynn Beyak has drawn ire for her comments on Indigenous people in Canada. Earlier this year, in March, Beyak was criticized for her defence of the Residential School System when she stated that the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s final report let the “remarkable works, [and] good… Read more »

The Value of History in the ‘Age of Fake News’

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Christo Aivalis During the 2016 American presidential election, but especially after the victory of Donald J. Trump, the term fake news became part of the public lexicon. The confluence of social media, digital campaigns, and the monetization of internet ‘clicks’ led to numerous instances of groups outright fabricating news stories, either to serve ideological objectives, or even just to generate… Read more »

White Supremacy, Political Violence, and Community: The Questions We Ask, from 1907 to 2017

Laura Ishiguro and Laura Madokoro In recent weeks, we have seen white supremacist rallies in cities across North America, from Charlottesville to Quebec City. On each occasion, anti-fascist and anti-racist activists, along with other community members, have confronted these rallies with large and diverse counter-demonstrations, largely shutting them down, overwhelming them, or rendering them caricatures of their original plans.  On… Read more »

Looking Forward, Looking Back: CBC News and The Revamped National

By Sean Graham Since Peter Mansbridge announced last year that he was retiring from his post as anchor of The National, there has been plenty of speculation about how the show would use his departure as an opportunity to revamp. Criticisms of the show have ranged from political bias to being too centered around its anchor and many looked forward… Read more »

A Theory, in Practice: Back to the Bering Land Bridge

By Alan MacEachern You have likely seen the video from Canada Day of a Mi’kmaw ceremony in Halifax disrupted by what appears to be a curling foursome and spare. At one point, one of the young white men (the skip?) asks a young, apparently Indigenous woman, what is clearly a leading question: “Has this always been Mi’kmaw land?” She replies,… Read more »