Tag Archives: public history

History Slam Episode 163: Pier 21

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http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/History-Slam-163.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham Between 1928 and 1971, around 1 million immigrants arrived in Canada at Halifax’s Pier 21. In the years since its closure as a reception centre for immigration, the site has taken on a symbolic role in representing mid-century Canadian immigration, embodying the policies, procedures, and attitudes of the immigration system. The… Read more »

History Slam Episode 162: Thinking Historically

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http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/History-Slam-162.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham Last week at the National Archives in Washington, the President of the United States hosted what was billed as the White House Conference on American History, during which he said that, through his administration, the National Endowment for the Humanities had “awarded a grant to support the development of a pro-American… Read more »

The Museum Sector is in Crisis

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by Armando Perla Soon after the killing of George Floyd on 25 May 2020, museums joined institutions around the world making public statements of solidarity with the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. Most of the statements from museums were not backed up by a track record of anti-racist work; many were, in fact, covering up a culture of human rights… Read more »

History Slam Episode 158: White Appropriations of Black Masculinities in the Civil Rights Era

http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/History-Slam-158.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham The years following the Second World War saw major changes to American society, from the rise of suburbs to powerful social movements to shifting international priorities. Within that change, popular culture took on a new significance in American life as television spread across the country and radio stations increasingly shifted to… Read more »

History Slam Episode 151: The Trials of Albert Stroebel

http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/History-Slam-151.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham In the spring of 1893, a murder in Sumas Prairie, British Columbia rocked the community and kicked off a lengthy debate about who committed the crime, multiple trials, and unanswered questions about the legal process in the rural community. The victim, John Marshall, was a Portuguese immigrant who had settled on… Read more »

So long Dundas: From Colonization to Decolonization Road?

These are just two stories of many. With a roadway that stretches across all of eastern Canada, an opportunity presents itself not just to commemorate one life or history, but rather to use the road – Highway Two, which started out in Ontario as Dundas Street – as a heritage tool to substantially change how our national, region, and local histories are remembered. Renaming Dundas Street presents a positive opportunity to make a change.

Research stories: The Mystery of the Missing Camera

Ronald Rudin Once upon a time, I did my research in the archives, a controlled environment where weird things rarely happened. Then, I became a public historian, venturing out into the real world, and things were not always so straightforward, particularly when I was on the road with a film crew. For instance, there was the time when the director… Read more »

History Slam Episode 146: Enemy Alien

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http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/History-Slam-146.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham In the midst of the First World War, the Canadian federal government established a program for the internment of Ukrainian Canadians. Since many Ukrainian immigrants arrived in Canada on passports of what were now enemy countries, some government officials believed that confining these people was a necessary precaution. One of the… Read more »

History Slam Episode 145: Hamilton as Public History

http://activehistory.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/History-Slam-145.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadBy Sean Graham In August 2015, a new musical opened at the Richard Rogers Theater in New York. With music, lyrics, and book by Lin-Manuel Miranda, who had previously won a Tony for In the Heights, the show was an adaptation of Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography of Alexander Hamilton.  Miranda had previewed some of… Read more »

History’s Reputation Problem

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When placed beside the sharp decline in undergraduate student enrollments, we must consider – given that interest in the past does not seem to have declined – perhaps, it is the public value of academic history, and – more specifically – the history professor, that has eroded.