Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Winter got you down? Still trying to work off that extra belt notch you gained over the holidays? Dying to show off your pink lycra body suit to your peers? Here’s your chance to remedy all that: this Saturday the History Grad Student Committee is sponsoring a Cross-Country Ski Outing. Everyone is welcome, including ski newbies. Click here for details about where and when to meet, and where to rent any ski gear you may lack.
In yet another digital coup, our friends in the University Library (as part of their fruitful partnership with the Canadian Research Knowlege Network) have now contrived to provide us with The Times Digital Archive: 1785 - 1985. That would be the Times of London, of course: like other venerable productions of British culture (see "Dictionary of National Biography") it does not bother to identify itself as such. The Times archive can be searched by keyword and offers (in very un-Times-like slashes of colour) "hit-term highlighting"of full facsimile images of either a specific article or a complete page. The entire newspaper is captured, with all articles, advertisements and illustrations/photos divided into categories to facilitate searching. To give a completely random example, those of you keen to follow the exploits of Lieutenant DesBrisay of the Marines of the Amazon need only click on "article" in the first hit for a search under that surname, then increase the magnification level of the ensuing image to something more closely approximating human capacities. Or just click here. The point of searching under that surname, of course, is to establish that one can indeed find almost anything in the Times.

As if having the Times is not enough, U of S Library users can now also access all 2 million or so pages of Toronto (sorry, Canadian) news in the Toronto Star: Pages of the Past published between 1894 and within a year or two or our shifting present. This resource, too, offers not just coverage of the great events of a given day, but a chance to retrieve scarcely recalled events from the vast depths of time. Everyone knows, for example, that the Toronto Maple Leafs have not won the Stanley Cup since Canada entered its second century of confederation, and yet careful checking reveals that the Leafs have indeed won the Cup since the Rolling Stones had their first North American hit, back when Tim Horton was a hockey player and the last of the baby-boomers were being born. Indeed, one diehard Leafs fan and esteemed member of the History Department still bears a small grudge against her otherwise admirable parents for not having allowed her, on account of her extreme youth, to attend the Leafs victory parade of May 5th, 1967 (see Toronto Star edition of May 6). Barely ambulatory but already every inch the historian, the esteemed member understood that future generations would never again celebrate a Leafs triumph, nor even refer to the Cup and the Leafs in the same sentence without a large dollop of irony.

Both the Times and the Toronto Star can be accessed under "T" in the "Database" section of the Library catalogue.
The University Library continues to add valuable electronic resources to its collection. Among the recent additions are an impressive set of reference works published by Oxford University Press, including, for example, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Economic History, The Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment, and The Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican Cultures. Click here for a list of all the items in this set, or find them individually listed among the library's "Databases A-Z" list.

In case you were wondering, the library continues to add things made of paper at a brisk clip.
Congratulations to doctoral candidate Brendan Edwards, who will shortly publish an article in The History of the Book in Canada: Volume 3, 1918-1918, due to be released by the University of Toronto Press in February. His contribution, "Reading on the 'Rez'" is part of Chapter 18, Special Communities of Readers. Click here for the link to UTP's newly functional website.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Stupendous news out of Toronto: Sharon Wright of STM successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis this past Friday at the University of Toronto. The thesis was accepted with no corrections, which is a rare achievement in itself. Congratulations, Dr. Wright!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The latest fab edition of the HGSC Newsletter is out on news stands now, but you can get your free copy, complete and entire, just by clicking right here! As ever, the highlight of this issue is the in-depth interview with a member of our very own history faculty! That would be sufficient reason to read the newsletter, of course, but there is all that and much more to enjoy!

On Feb. 22 Professor Alison Keith of the University of Toronto will be presenting a CMRS Colloquium entitled, "Imperial Leisure: Love and Luxury in Roman Poetry," focusing on the poetry of Propertius.

Professor Keith, who is actively involved with the UofT Women and Gender Studies Institute, has also agreed to lead an informal luncheon discussion focusing on the current state of the discipline — Classics but, more broadly, the Humanities — for women. This session is intended mainly for our female undergraduate majors and graduate students, but all are welcome, including faculty. The luncheon will be held at the faculty club, beginning at 12:00, on Thursday, Feb. 22.

To give us an idea of how much interest there might be in such a session, could you please send a note to Carolynn Schmidt (carolynn.schmidt@usask.ca ) *by* *February 2nd* indicating that you would like to attend.

Professor Keith is currently at work on a monograph on Propertius. To learn more about her research interests, click here.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Sad news for the

Goddard's Pie and Mash
, the oldest pie and mash shop in London, closed in November owing to family circumstances. The shop, which opened in Deptford, London in 1890 and relocated to Greenwich in 1952, had been passed down through generations of Goddards. The menu included a variety of pies, mushy peas,liquor or gravy on mash, and jellied eel, all of which--except the jellied eel--will be missed by Lisa Smith. (Ed. Eel is a delicacy in Japan & China: you've been warned.) Members of the Smith clan, Mark Gudgeon(native of London's East End), Edward and Eluned Smith, and Glynys Hohmann, will particularly miss the fruit crumble with custard, which was truly excellent. Smith comments on the passing of an East End London tradition: "The historian in me sighs." Warren Johnston, however, has other priorities: "Never mind the historian, the lover of good pies also sighs."
Call for Papers: the
First Annual Buffalo Province History Conference
(Click on image to enlarge)

Traditions all start somewhere, and this spring the University of Saskatchewan Department of History is commencing what we hope will be a longstanding annual tradition: The Buffalo Province History Conference. This open and inclusive event seeks to bring together graduate students, senior honours undergraduates, and faculty in History from the six main Prairie universities in a collegial and cordial environment. Drawing on scholars from the region Sir Frederick Haultain once sought to unify into a single province called Buffalo, the conference will afford students the chance to gain conference experience and liaise with potential future advisors and peers. This year’s conference will be held May 11-13 2007 at Manitou Springs Resort and Mineral Spa, located about an hour southeast of Saskatoon. Professor Erika Dyck from the University of Alberta will be delivering our keynote address: “Acid Flashbacks: Keeping Tabs on the History of LSD.”

Students in the Department of History at the Universities of Alberta, Calgary, Lethbridge, Regina, Saskatchewan, Winnipeg, and Manitoba are especially encouraged to attend and present their work. Individual or panel submissions on all historical topics are welcome. Please note that financial assistance will be available to presenting students.

The weekend is certain to be fun and a great chance to meet and socialize with others. Please see the attached poster for more information. Also feel free to contact Keith Carlson (keith.carlson@usask.ca) or Byron Plant (bkplant@shaw.ca) for more information. The deadline for submissions is February 15.

We look forward to seeing you in May!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The seventh floor is abuzz with anticipation as Friday approaches. And not just any Friday, but Friday the 26th of January, 2007, the day of the 10th annual Michael Swan Honours Colloquium, celebrating the work of our very own History Honours Students.

(click on image to enlarge)

To see the never-before-scanned full programme for this gala event, simply click on the following link: Swan-a-thon.2007.pdf.

Having had your appetite for scholarly excellence whetted, you need only make your way to the friendly confines of the Diefenbaker Canada Centre on Friday. The day begins at with coffee at 9:am, with the first of the five 45-minute sessions starting at 9:15. Further coffee breaks ensue, and there is, as always, a fine FREE lunch at noon, followed by the traditional damn fine piece of cake. Sessions resume at 1:pm, and the whole thing concludes convivially at 4:pm. Absolutely everyone is welcome to attend some or all of the proceedings, and any first or second-year students even thinking of joining the merry band of History Honours Students, or any current honours student who expects to make their presentation at a future Swan-a-thon, is especially urged to attend.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Regular readers will recall that we rashly declared "Blizzard be damned" and issued an assurance that Lisa Smith's lecture would proceed as planned on January 11th. We were wrong about that. We can, however, issue a less rash assurance that Professor Smith will indeed present her lecture, "Sterility and the Disordered Household"? in the History Grad Student Committee Lecture Series this coming Thursday, January 25th in STM 260 from 3:30 to 4:30 pm. The lecture is open to the general public, and everyone is welcome. Click here to learn more.
Next week (Jan. 29 to Feb. 2) is Writing it Right Week at the U of S, during which the University Secretary's Office is sponsoring a series of presentations about academic honesty and integrity. All sessions will be held in the Neatby-Timlin Theatre, Room 241 Arts, and intended for undergrads, grad students, and faculty.

Monday, January 29, 12:30-2pm. Keynote Address: Just Remember These Three Things. Dr. Charles Lipson, University of Chicago. (Several universities are now distributing his book, Doing Honest Work in College, to all of their first-year students. Click here to see his website.

Tuesday, January 30, 1:00 to 2:30 pm: “On My Honour” Do we need an Honour Code at the
U of S?" A panel discussion with faculty and students about whether having an Honour Code here would benefit students and instructors.

Wednesday, January 31, 12:30 to 2 pm: "Copyright, Plagiarism & Academic Integrity", presented by Tom Roberts of the Industry Liaison Office. (This session is said to be particularly useful for graduate students and supervisors.)

Thursday, February 1, 1:00 to 2:30 pm: "How to Write an Essay using the Internet", presented by Susan Murphy, Library. (This session is aimed at first-year and second-year students).

Friday, February 2, 12:30 to 2 pm: "Crossing the Line: Student Stories. Did they do it wrong? You be the judge." Watch and discuss as U of S drama students deal with "typical" student situations.
Even as we speak, Bill Waiser is in Japan, where he is giving four lectures--two in Tokyo and two in Kyoto--at the invitation of our (nationalistically speaking) Department of External Affairs and the Japanese Association of Canadian Studies.
The Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching Effectiveness is sponsoring a series of Teaching Development Days for grad students and faculty. All sessions will be held in their newly refurbished digs (formerly the headquarters of the College of Grad Studies), in Room 50 of the Murray Building.

The first of these sessions is designed specifically for Teaching Assistants, and will be presented by Candice Dahl, now of the Library but once-upon-a-time a T.A. and History M.A. student in her own right. (Ed.: We promise to make more judicious use of colour from this point forward.)

Candice's session is "Demystifying the Library (for TA's)", January 24th. 1:30-3:30.

All T.A.s are welcome and the session is free, but it is preferred that you register in advance, which a) you had better do soon (the original announcement was only issued January 19th, mind you) and b) you can do online by clicking here.

Happily, you can register once for all of the sessions you wish to attend.

Upcoming sessions include:

Academic Publications: Start Early and Finish Strong. Thursday, March 1, 1:30-3:30
(Presented by Chuck Farrow, Animal Sciences)

Assignments. (for Faculty) Thursday, March 8, 1:30-3:30 (Candice Dahl, Library)

Competency Based Education. (Ed.: keep the quips to yourself, please) March 21,1:30-3:30 2007
(Marg Forbes, Commerce)

Emotional Intelligence and Self-Confidence in Academia. (Ed. ditto) April 4, 1:30-3:30, 2007 (Marg Forbes, Commerce)

The Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching Effectiveness also sponsors TEA (Teaching Effectiveness Afternoon) Sessions, informal weekly gatherings to discuss matters of teaching and learning. Some weeks there will an announced theme (feel free to nominate a theme!) and on other occasions those gathered will discuss whatever comes up. The TEA sessions are open to T.A.s and Faculty alike, and will be held on odd-numbered Tuesdays and Thursdays (i.e. Tuesday January 23rd, Wednesday January 31st, and so forth.) Click here to learn more.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Darren Dahl will be the next presenter in the CMRS Colloquium Series when he presents "Beyond Truth and Falsehood: Jean-Luc Marion on the Mystical Theology of Dionysius the Areopagite", on Thursday, January 25th in STM 344B. (That's Dionysius himself, or at least an image of him, to the left.) Refreshments at 4pm, talk at 4:30.
Back in November, Lisa Smith's History 397, "Approaches to History" seminar visited the Western Development Museum. While getting on with parsing, decoding and deconstructing the WDM and all that it stands for, they appear to have found time to enjoy themselves -- either that, or Margaret Robbins, Adam Fowler and Kurt Krueger have highly developed camera-posing reflexes.
Got a yen to go to Edmonton in March? Then consider this. The Undergraduate Association of the Department of History and Classics of the University of Alberta will hold its fourth annual undergraduate conference in Classics on March 9th and 10th, 2007. To that end, the organizers invite "abstract submissions" (we think they actually mean submissions of abstracts, though if you are a dab hand with a brush you may prefer to take them at their word) for presentations on topics in any field associated with ancient Greek or Roman culture. Undergraduate students from across Canada as well as from the US have attended the previous editions of this celebrated event. The deadline for submission is February 9th, 2007. Current information beyond that is pending, but in the meantime click here to see the (presumably similar) details for applying to last year's conference.
Tomorrow, Friday, January 19, the rightly (not to say properly) celebrated History Grad Students Colloquia Series resumes. The 2007 season kicks off with Cameron Goodfellow, "Magical Publications and the Institution of Censorship in 17th Century London"; followed by Chris Paige, "Canada and Chemical Warfare During World War II". The colloquium lasts from 3:30 - 5:00 pm, downstairs at the Faculty Club. All faculty and grad students invited. Snacks will be provided.
Historians have told us a lot about Winnipeg -- as a trading centre; a site for colonization; a commercial centre; a hotbed of labour and political unrest; a failed NHL franchise, and so forth -- but never has anyone claimed it as a gay and lesbian centre. And yet it was, as Valerie Korinek will explain in a lecture entitled "'Having a gay old time in Winnipeg? Gender and Sexual Histories of a Prairie City" on Monday, January 22, from 3:30-4:45pm, in room 238 Admin. Based on interviews and archival research, the paper challenges the presumptions of hetero-normality within the city, region, and in the telling of its history. Valerie's talk is part of the Sexualities and Gender Diversity Series, sponsored by the Provost's Office and organized by the LGBT Centre. Everyone welcome.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The officially great Tommy Douglas, the cheerful gentleman seen to the right, has had a good year. First, CBC-Nation voted him "The Greatest Canadian" ahead of Wayne Gretzky, Peter Gzowski, and various Liberal prime ministers. Then the RCMP was forced to stop denying that Douglas was one of many law-abiding (if not always Great) Canadians they spied upon for decades. And now he has become the subject of the latest book by our own Bill Waiser, whose new biography Tommy Douglas (Fitzhenry and Whiteside, 2006) has appeared in "The Canadians" series of biographies aimed at younger readers. The book restores a man who has taken on almost mythic proportions to his personal and historical contexts, rendering him fully alive and every bit as important, interesting, and, indeed, great as he was. Congratulations, Bill! Click here to learn more.
Speaking of Tommy Douglas and the whole unfortunate mix-up about the Mounties mistakenly claiming not to have spied upon him all those years ago (and for all those years), Steve Hewitt (Ph.D. 1997, now of Birmingham University in England) shared his extensive knowledge of RCMP domestic espionage activities in an interview on CBC Radio's Morning Edition when the news broke in December. Steve's former supervisor, meanwhile, Bill Waiser, was interviewed on CBC Radio's evening news program, "The World At 6".
Congratulations to Rob Morley, who successfully defended his MA thesis, "Earning Their Wings: British Pilot Training, 1912-1918", this past December. Rob is back in Ontario for the time being, and plans to leap back into the doctoral fray come September.
Reliable sources confirm that Daniel Macfarlane has successfully demonstrated that there is indeed life after a History M.A. Since defending his thesis in 2005, he has lived in Germany, worked as a researcher for a number of U of S professors, co-written a documentary history series for History Television, done documentaries for the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives, and worked as a researcher for the Saskatchewan Institute of Public Policy. All that proved too much for Dan, however, and so he has fled back into the quieter groves of studentdom: just this month he has embarked on his Ph.D in History at the University of Ottawa, studying the history of Canadian-German foreign relations during the Cold War. Congratulations Dan!
What's Up has taken something of an unplanned hiatus in recent weeks, but it is now time to catch up with all that has been going on in and around Planet History...

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Blizzard be damned! Professor Lisa Smith is forging ahead with her lecture in the HGSC series, "Sterility and the Disordered Household"? It will be held this afternoon, Thursday, January 11, in STM 260 from 3:30 to 4:30 pm. The lecture is open to the general public, and everyone is welcome. Click on this link to learn more: HGSC%20poster%20Lisa%20Smith.pdf

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

In case you missed the advance publicity, tonight's Whelen Visiting Lecture will be delivered by Steven Shapin, the Franklin L. Ford Professsor of the History of Science at Harvard University. Professor Shapin has authored many notable books and articles, including The Social History of Truth (Chicago, 1994) and The Scientific Revolution (Chicago, 1996). Tonight's lecture, "Thinking Different... Science and the Modern World" explores the sentiments that underpin our sense that science begat modernity, and questions the fundamental assumption that the two are, in fact, linked. Don't miss it. January 9, 7:pm, Convocation Hall: Admission Free, Everyone Welcome.