Ben Bradley | College of Arts

Ben Bradley

Bradley British Columbia by the Road book cover
Assistant Professor
2005 MacKinnon Extension


PhD, Queen’s University, 2013
MA, University of Victoria, 2004
BA (Hons), Simon Fraser University, 2001


Assistant Professor, University of Guelph, 2023-present
Assistant Professor, University of Northern British Columbia, 2020-2023
Grant Notley Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Alberta, 2015-2017
SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Toronto, 2013-2014

Research Areas:

modern Canada
public pasts, commemoration, heritage sites and museums
tourism, travel, mobilities
cultural landscapes
environmental history

Current Research Projects:

> Fruit Stand Ahead   An agricultural-architectural history of roadside fruit stands in western Canada, conducted with co-researcher Jan Hadlaw. At first glance, these colourful, eye-catching artifacts of agraria might appear straightforward and even timeless. However, this research shows them to be quite recent and highly modern, with a complex political economy and controversial reputation within orcharding country.
> Routes, Roots and Rural Modernity   How rivers, railways, roads, and roadlessness shaped rhythms of everyday life and hierarchies of place in the northern Rockies during the period 1910-1975.
> my new research project on “park rowdyism” examines the proliferation of bad behaviour in non-urban parks in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. Bringing environmental history into greater conversation with histories of youth and popular culture, it aims to complicate our understanding of the culture of nature around Canada’s Great Outdoors during the late twentieth century.



British Columbia by the Road: Car Culture and the Making of a Modern Landscape (UBC Press, 2017)

   co-edited books and journal issues:

Histoire sociale/Social History theme issue: agricultural, food, and fuel markets in Canada (2021).

with Jay Young and Colin M. Coates. Moving Natures: Mobility and the Environment in Canadian History (University of Calgary Press, 2016).

Histoire sociale/Social History theme issue: tourism in Canada (2016). 

BC Studies theme issue: provincial parks (2011).

   articles and book chapters:

with Jan Hadlaw. “Fruitleggers, Fruit Police, and British Columbia’s Black Market in Orchard Fruit, 1935-1975.” Histoire sociale/Social History 111 (2021): 359-384.

“‘Undesirables Entering the Town to Look for Good Times’: Banff Confronts its Counterculture Youth Scene, 1965-1971.” Urban History Review 47, 1-2 (2018-19): 71-88.

with Jan Hadlaw. “Between Orchard and Highway: Roadside Produce Stands as Rural Artifact and Enterprise.” Material Culture Review 82-83 (2015-16 [2017]): 10-25.

“The David Thompson Memorial Fort: An Early Outpost of Historically Themed Tourism in Western Canada.” Histoire sociale/Social History 99 (2016): 409-429.

“‘Lucerne No Longer Has an Excuse to Exist’: Mobility, Landscape, and Memory in the Yellowhead Pass.” BC Studies 189 (2016): 37-53.

“Behind the Scenery: Manning Park and the Aesthetics of Automobile Accessibility in 1950s British Columbia.” BC Studies 170 (2011): 41-65.

“Photographing the High and the Low in British Columbia’s Provincial Parks.” BC Studies 170 (2011): 153-169.

“‘A Questionable Basis for Establishing a Major Park’: Politics, Roads, and the Failure of a National Park in British Columbia’s Big Bend Country.” In Claire E. Campbell, ed., A Century of Parks Canada, 1911-2011. University of Calgary Press, 2011: 79-102.