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History News

Sharon Weaver on Back-to-the-Land movements in Canada

For four years, History Department docrtoral candidate Sharon Weaver and her husband lived in an old carriage shed on their 400-acre farm in Cape Breton. “You could see the stars through the walls,” she recalls. “In the winter, we’d be sleeping in the warmest down sleeping bags we could get, but in the morning our boots would be frozen to the floor and my husband’s moustache would be white with frost.” (Read more...)

Tools of Masculine Self-actualization - Dr. Rob Kristofferson at Rural History Roundtable

Wednesday, March 23, the next Rural History Roundtable features Dr Rob Kristofferson, who will present a paper based on his co-authored, and soon-to-be published, book: More of a Man: The Diaries of Andrew McIlwraith, Canada West and New York City, 1857-1862. The title of his presentation: “Narrating the Known Story: Mid-Victorian Craftsworker Diaries as Tools of Masculine Self-actualization." The talk takes place in MacKinnon Room 311, 10:00am to 12:00noon in conjunction with Hist4620. There will also be a poster display of the farm diary work being done by the class. 

Animals and Entertainment in History

Historian Susan Nance writes about rodeo, and circus elephants as celebrities.
If you’re looking for a little entertainment today, you have hundreds of options: TV, movie theatres, the Internet, video games, radio and more. But in the 19th century, entertainment was created much closer to home and often as an extension of everyday life. History professor Susan Nance says rodeo is a good example. “In western North America, it seems that animals often provided entertainment because they offered the raw energy of the unexpected,” says Nance.  (read more...)

Alan Gordon's THE HERO AND THE HISTORIANS Shortlisted for ASPP Award

History professor Alan Gordon is a finalist for an award from the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences’s Aid to Scholarly Publications Program (ASPP). Gordon’s book, The Hero and the Historians: Historiography and the Uses of Jacques Cartier, is one of five books to make the short list for the Canada Prize for best ASPP-subventioned English-language book in the social sciences.

Art and Science in Breeding: Creating Better Livestock - Rural History Roundtable

On Tuesday, March 8, Dr. Margaret Derry presents some of her latest research at the Rural History Roundtable: "Art and Science in Breeding: Creating Better Livestock." Margaret Derry is a purebred breeder, artist, and historian of genetics and its relationship to culture. She is the author of: Horses in Society; Bred for Perfection: Shorthorn Cattle, Collies and Arabian Horses since 1800; Ontario's Cattle Kingdom; and the forthcoming volume Practice and Science in Livestock Breeding: Creating Better Chickens.

Debunking Our Agrarian Myths

Dr. Dougls McCalla, recently retired as U of G’s Canada Research Chair in Rural History, examines Pre-Confederation trade to find early Canadians were not so self-sufficient as we might wish to believe. (read more...)

Now on FACEBOOK: Rural History Roundtable at Guelph

The Rural History Roundtable is now in full-swing for this term, with a packed speaker list through to the end of April. In order to keep you all updated we have created the new Rural History Roundtable Facebook Page! Feel free to 'like' the page ...

Environtmental and Local Power in the Gulf Islands - Rural History Roundtable

On Tuesday, February 15, Sharon Weaver presents some of her latest research at the Rural History Roundtable: "Environmental and Local Power in the Gulf Islands: The Islands Trust and Debates on Denman, 1974-79." Sharon Weaver is a doctoral candidate in the Department of History and author of "Rural Encounters: 1970's Back to the Land," which appeared in Oral History Forum last Fall. The talk taks place in the OAC Boardroom (104 Johnston Hall) from 2:30-4:30pm. All welcome! Get the flyer: (.pdf)