Category Archives: Gender and Sexuality

Building a white Canada: gender, sexuality, race, and medicine

By Allison Lynn Bennett Sexual control is inherent to empire. Colonial authorities and doctors understood sexuality as key to maintaining white superiority. Reproduction and health were the focus of eugenic measures that played on gender, sexual, and racial stereotypes. As a settler colony, Canada imagined itself as “British”, or “white”, and therefore regulated the sexual lives and behaviour of both… Read more »

Who Speaks? Who Tells? Who Listens? – Part 3

Excerpt of A World Without Martha: A Memoir of Sisters, Disability, and Difference By Victoria Freeman For so many years, my knowledge of my sister had been defined more through her absence than her presence, through the shape of the void she left in my life. I had been able to approach who she was only through echoes and shadows,… Read more »

The Missing History of Disappearance in Vancouver: The Rise and Fall of the Neighbourhood Safety Office

  James FitzGerald The Downtown Eastside (DTES) of Vancouver has been described as Canada’s Poorest Postal Code and one of the country’s densest populations of substance-using and low-income communities. Largely due to the disappearances and murders of so many of its women and girls, the DTES has also become known as ground zero for disproportionate violence against Indigenous women, as… Read more »

The Historical Reality of Queer Families

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Erin Gallagher-Cohoon In this morning’s post, I focused on how parliamentarians were invoking a sense of history and nationalism to argue both for and against legalizing same-sex marriage. In this post, I explore the history that is often left unsaid in this debate: the history of queer parenting. By 2005, when many parliamentarians were arguing that marriage rights should not… Read more »

“We as parliamentarians can feel the gaze of history upon us”: Historical Consciousness and Bill C-38, the Civil Marriage Act (2005)

Erin Gallagher-Cohoon In 2005, Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage. During the House of Commons’ debates on Bill C-38, an act respecting certain aspects of legal capacity for marriage for civil purposes, parliamentarians on both sides argued that what they were contemplating doing was unprecedented; whether a brave or a reckless act, it was… Read more »

The Madam Who Shot the Mountie: How a brothel-keeper in 1880s Edmonton crossed the law – and won

By Laurie Bertram This piece was first published in the University of Toronto Magazine.  On May 23, 1889, a packed courtroom in Edmonton watched as “Big Nelly” Webb, the most famous woman in town, answered to the charge of shooting a member of the North West Mounted Police. Several months earlier, Constable Thomas Cairney had been found seriously wounded on… Read more »

Anti-69 FAQ

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Tom Hooper, Gary Kinsman, and Karen Pearlston (The Anti-69 Forum is taking place March 23-24, 2019 at Carleton University. See www.anti-69.ca for more information) When we say we are Anti-69, we are referring to the mythologies surrounding the 1969 Criminal Code reform. We are not Anti-69 in all contexts. There are many important events from 1969 that deserve to be… Read more »

The “role of women” in Ontario school history narratives

by Rose Fine-Meyer In yesterday’s post, Seneca undergrad Jvalin Vijayakumaran found that there has been a cursory integration of women in the current grade 7 & 8 Ontario history curriculum. His research supports what scholars have found since the 1970s, that women’s historical experiences are either missing or are limited in their inclusion in school history textbooks and resources. The… Read more »

Connecting Through Cake: The Story of My Fall Fair Mocha Cake

Kesia Kvill An earlier version of this post appeared on Potatoes, Rhubarb, and Ox. This summer I came across the information booklet for the Fergus Fall Fair. After flipping through it I decided that I would like to enter some items into the handicraft and culinary arts categories. I figured it would give me a good reason to finish some… Read more »

Queering Social Studies Education in New Brunswick

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By Casey Burkholder During a late fall afternoon of syllabus writing, and distracted Googling, I came across the activist archival work of Dusty Green, who has developed the New Brunswick Queer Heritage Initiative (NBQHI). The NBQHI emerged after Dusty came across pictures donated to the New Brunswick Provincial Archives of rural New Brunswick boyfriends, Leonard and Cub, photographed between 1905… Read more »