Category Archives: Teaching History

Historical Fiction as a Gateway Drug

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By Jeffers Lennox I can trace my interest in the past to a single book: Jack Whyte’s The Skystone, a story set in the time of the legendary King Arthur.  First published in 1992, when I was 12, The Skystone had just about everything necessary to hook a young kid: historical imagination, magic, war, heroism, and enough “adult” subject matter… Read more »

Is our conception of history education “evolving” or is today’s focus simply a historical trend once again in vogue?

This is the first of four blog posts originally posted on THEN/HiER’s Teaching the Past blog reviewing the edited collection New Possibilities for the Past: Shaping History Education in Canada (UBC Press) and responding to the question: “Is our conception of history education “evolving” or is today’s focus simply a historical trend once again in vogue?”

The Ordeal: Evaluation and the Production of Historians

It is a competitive world out there, perhaps now more than ever. An ongoing “Ordeal” can be a strength, creating researchers and teachers who are leaders continually striving to learn and improve. But if it is unproductive, excessive or abusive, then it loses its value and, worse, we lose or discourage good people. Even a few such cases are too many. In this blog, I hope to inspire reflection and discussion. Are our methods of producing and evaluating historians the best possible? Are they being applied appropriately all of the time? If not, what can we do about it?

Illusionary Order: Cautionary Notes for Online Newspapers

By Ian Milligan Online digitized newspapers are great. If you have access (either through a free database or via a personal or library subscription), you can quickly find the information you need: a specific search for a last name might help you find ancestors, a search for a specific event can find historical context for it (i.e. the Christie Pits… Read more »

Living History at New York’s Tenement Museum

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By Jay Young I recently spent an extended weekend in New York City.  Along with the well-known sights, sounds and tastes of the Big Apple, I was excited to visit the Tenement Museum, a restored five-storey building at 97 Orchard Street that educates visitors about life in the Lower East Side during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  The… Read more »

Outreach and Collections. Encouraging Community Members to Play a Role in Saving History

This post discusses the need for professionals in cultural heritage fields to reach out to non-professionals so that we may gather and support the proper keeping of historical collections.

Hark! An Agent of Historical Change (and Jokes)

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by Ian Mosby Historians are not usually known as being a very funny group of people. I can’t remember laughing out loud even once during the dozen or so hours it took me to read E.P. Thomson’s Making of the English Working Class and my own attempts at humour in lectures typically lead to more glazed eyes and groans than… Read more »