Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Professor Chris Kent Retires

After 39 years in our department, Professor Kent taught his final class last week. He is well-known for his work on social, intellectual and gender history in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Britain, as well as historiography. Suitably, Professor Kent's final class was on "Approaches to History".

If you would like to join the department in celebrating Professor Kent's career at the University of Saskatchewan, please join us at a retirement party on February 4th, 3:30 to 5:30 at the Faculty Club. Former students are very welcome to attend.

Pictured at top: Chris Kent, discussing future fishing trips
Pictured below: Chris Kent and his "Approaches to History" class
Image Credits: Nadine Penner and Valerie Korinek

Monday, November 23, 2009

Waiser on CBC National

On November 21, The National on CBC did a great segment ( on Howdy McPhail's aerial photography and (of course!) interviewed Bill about his new book on McPhail. For more information on the book itself, check out the publisher's website.

(If the link to the segment isn't working, just open it in a new window or cut and paste the address.)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Movie Night: Gallipoli

On Nov. 18, HUSA will be presenting Gallipoli as part of its annual film series. Professor John McCannon will introduce the movie.

This excellent movie looks at the ill-fated (not to spoil the ending!) World War I battle. Besides looking at the mistakes of the Australian and New Zealand military commanders, the film focuses on the friendships between the soldiers. A very young Mel Gibson stars.

Time: 6:00 p.m.
Place: Arts 241

(Image: "Australian Despatch Rider who rode through a hail of bullets", Wellcome Library)

Graduate Poster Session

Well done to the eight graduate History students who participated in the University Graduate Poster Session on October 13.

Last year's winners Heather Stanley and Merle Massie held a workshop on how to do academic posters earlier this autumn, which encouraged Marc MacDonald, Liam Haggarty, Jonathon Clapperton, Laura Larsen, Leslie Baker, Amy Samson and Stephanie Danyluk to try their hands at posters this year -- and very successfully too!

The department came in third for most entries from across the University. Leslie Baker (Ph.D. student) took first prize, while Stephanie Danyluk (M.A. student) came in second in the Arts Division.

Top Picture: Winner Leslie Baker (left) and Laura Larsen (right).
Bottom Picture: Marc MacDonald (left) and Second-place winner Stephanie Danyluk (right).

(Photo Credit: Valerie Korinek)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Remembrance Day Ceremony

On November 11 at 1:00 p.m., the University of Saskatchewan will host a Remembrance Day ceremony at the Memorial Gates. In addition to the University President, the Lutheran Chaplain, and other dignitaries and guests, the ceremony will also feature Scouts from Geoff Cunfer's troop and Cubs from Keith Carlson's pack. Additionally, immediately following the ceremony, the Student Union will host a reception at Browsers where Mike Hayden will provide a short lecture on the significance of both the WWII names on the wall in Browsers and the WWI names in the College Building.

(Image Credit: Wellcome Library, London)
Congratulations to Our Recent Graduates

On October 31, the Department saw six of its graduate students graduate. Congratulations to Dr. Jason Zorbas and Masters Jennifer Hamel, Amanda Harrigan, Alice Glaze, Taiki Kato and Carla Fehr!

In the last couple months, we have also had a number of students defend their theses on a number of fascinating subjects -- from the history of women at the University of Saskatchewan to French missionaries in Tonkin. Congratulations to Kevin Gambell, John Greenshields and Victoria Drover Lamb, as well as our new alumni.

List of Recent Theses

Kevin Gambell (M.A. thesis) "Cemetery Spaces of Sto:lo Shxwowhamel and the Ile-a-la Crosse Metis".

John Greenshields (M.A. thesis) "Republican Universalism and Racial Inferiority: Paul Bonnetain and the French Mission to Civilize in Tonkin".

Victoria Lamb Drover (M.A. thesis) "A Place for Everyone, but Everyone in Their Place: The Inclusivity of Female Students, Staff and Faculty at the University of Saskatchewan (1907-1920)".

Carla Fehr (M.A. thesis) "The Apostle of Capitalism: The Economist from 1843-1863".

Taiko Kato (M.A. thesis) "To Endure and Become Humble: Myth and Reality of the Climate of the Prairies".

Friday, November 06, 2009

Portraits of An Era

Bill Waiser's latest book, Potraits of an Era: The Aerial Photography of Howdy McPhail, has just been published. This book not only tells a good story, but it is filled with beautiful reproductions of McPhail's aerial pictures. After perusing Portraits during a recent department meeting, I can heartily recommend the book if you are thinking about presents for family members, aviation buffs, or photography fans.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Susan Blake

It is with tremendous sadness that we inform the What’s Up community of the death of Susan Blake, beloved wife and partner of Professor Gordon DesBrisay. Susan died peacefully in the Palliative Care Ward of St. Paul’s Hospital on October 28, 2009 from pancreatic cancer. Susan and Gordon faced Susan’s diagnosis (in May 2009) bravely and they sought to maximize her time here, continuing their passions for friends and family, community, gardening, dog-walking, literature and movies. As many of you will know, Susan commuted between Easton, PA where she was a Professor of English at Lafayette College to Saskatoon from 1993 (when Gordon was appointed in the History Department) until 2006 when she took early retirement. Susan was an accomplished scholar and teacher, an expert in African-American literature and travel literature, and a former Department Head at Lafayette. She will be remembered for her wit, her passion for life and learning, her intellect and her desire to forge community wherever she went. The History community will miss Susan dearly and we extend our heartfelt sympathy to Gordon at this time. Those who wish to do so are welcome to attend the Celebration of Susan’s life, which will take place on Saturday, November 7 at 2p.m. at the Acadia-McKague’s Funeral Centre, 915 Acadia Drive, Saskatoon. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Canadian Harambee Education Society or the St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

History Events on Campus This Week

The final event to celebrate wrestling at the University of Saskatchewan will be held on October 29. Nathan Hatton will speak on "Thrashing Seasons: Roughness, Respectability and Professional Wrestling on the Canadian Prairies before 1930" (sponsored by the College of Kinesiology and the Department of History). The talk starts at 7:30 in Room 246 at the Physical Activity Complex (PAC).

If you haven't yet had a chance to see the exhibition on "Ring-a-Ding-Dong-Dandy: Glimpses of Wrestling History", it's not too late. The exhibition is on until November 5 at the Murray Library's Link Gallery.

Also on October 29, Sharon Wright from the Department of History at St Thomas More College will be giving a lecture to the CMRS Colloquia Series on "Women, Conflict & Community After the Great Mortality". Refreshments are at 4:00 and the talk begins at 4:30 (Room 344B St Thomas More College).

Remembering Jackie Bates Report

On October 17, the community of Glidden gathered to remember young Jackie Bates, who was murdered by his own parents in 1933. Bill Waiser was invited to give a talk (and to sign books) about the Bates tragedy. Forty people attended the placement of the gravemarker and sixty came to the talk. The community raised $1000 for a new recreation centre.

Picture Above: Bill Waiser and the two event organizers by the grave marker for Jackie Bates.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Human Experimentation Workshop

Historians Larry Stewart and Erika Dyck will be hosting a workshop on the history of human experimentation on Friday, October 23 from 8:30 to 4:00 in the Diefenbaker Centre (Theatre Room 129).

Topics include: electric shock and pornography in the eighteenth century (Paula Yates); galvanic experiments (Joan Steigerwald); medical research during the American Civil War (Shauna Devine); the 'other' Tuskagee study (Paul Lombardo); Nazi experimentation (Paul Weindling); and Albertan eugenics (Erika Dyck).

For more information and to register, contact Marc MacDonald (

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Remembering Jackie Bates

In 1933, eight year old Jackie Bates was killed by his parents. This Saturday (Oct. 17), two special events will commemorate his short life: a marker placement ceremony and a reading and book signing by Bill Waiser.

The marker placement ceremony will be held at Madison Cemetery at 1:30. Participants should meet at the Glidden Community Hall at 1:15, before proceeding as a group to place a nameplate on Jackie's unmarked grave.

At 2:30 (Glidden Community Hall), Bill Waiser will talk about the significance of the Bates tragedy and read from his book Who Killed Jackie Bates?. There will also be music provided by Jack Humeney and a charity auction for the Glidden Recreation Board Riding Arena.

For more information about the events or to make a donation, please contact Carla Motz of Glidden (463-3576).

Friday, October 09, 2009

The Long Trek to Northern Saskatchewan

This morning, grad student Merle Massie interviewed live on CBC Radio's Blue Sky with Garth Materie. To hear her on the subject of overland freighting in northern Saskatchewan and how people braved the elements, you can access the audio file at: . An appropriate topic given our current weather!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

HUSA Meet the Profs Night

The History Undergraduate Students' Association is hosting the annual Meet the Profs Night. Anyone -- not just HUSA members -- who has an interest in history is encouraged to attend.

Date: Tuesday, October 13
Time: 6:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Location: The Hose and Hydrant Brew Pub
Address: 612 11th Street

The HUSA executive hopes to see you there!

Janice McKinnon, Huron Alumni Award of Distinction

Congratulations to department member Janice MacKinnon who was awarded the Huron Alumni Award of Distinction at the University of Western Ontario's Homecoming. The award recognizes her outstanding professional achievements and community service of Western alumni. Janice MacKinnon (FRSC) is a former Minister of Finance for the Province of Saskatchewan and has written three books on Canadian history: The Liberty We Seek published by Harvard University Press (1983), While the Women Only Wept (1994) and Minding the Public Purse (2003). Born in Kitchener, Ontario, she received an honours B.A. from Huron University College in 1969 before going on to take an M.A. and Ph.D. at Queen's University.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Happy 100th Birthday!

This week, the Department of History celebrates its 100th Anniversary. We have special events -- including a President's Reception on Friday night and an afternoon symposium on Saturday -- scheduled this weekend. To see more on the department's celebrations and how to participate, please see the department website. The good news is that you don't need to be alumni to attend and it's not too late to sign up!

To start things off this week, Bill Waiser was interviewed by CBC Radio's This Morning Edition on September 29th. The podcast is available at: .

Monday, September 21, 2009

Lessons from the Squared Circle:
Wrestling at the U of S

The History Department has joined a group of other departments and university units in a month-long exploration and celebration of the history of wrestling on the Canadian prairies.

The centrepiece of the project is Ring-A-Ding-Dong-Dandy: Glimpses of Wrestling History, a large exhibition in the Murray Library's Link Gallery (September 25 to November 5), using works from a proposed gift to the University of Saskatchewan Archives.

In addition to the exhibition, there will be a display on U of S Huskie amateur wrestling at the PAC, a reception and book launch on October 28 for Wrestling in the Canadian West by pro wrestler Vance Nevada and a Greystone Theatre production of Trafford Tanzi by Claire Luckham (a play about a young woman who liberates herself by becoming a wrestler).

The project winds up on October 29 when the History Department and the College of Kinesiology cosponsor a presentation by sports historian Nathan Hatton entitled Thrashing Seasons: Roughness, Respectability and Professional Wrestling on the Canadian Prairies before 1930.

For more information and details of events, see the project poster and programme.
Recording the History of Sto:lo First Nation

History student Stephanie Danyluk spent four weeks this summer with the Sto:lo First Nation (Fraser River, B.C.), while taking Keith Carlson's ethno-history field school.

In an interview with The StarPhoenix, Stephanie speaks of the significance of her experiences:

"'The elders told us that now that we've heard these stories, it's our responsibility to share them,' said Danyluk.

'We weren't just witnesses who were sitting and observing. We were a part of it.'"

What a great way to spend part of the summer!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

First HUSA event of the year

HUSA is launching its first social event of the semester on Tuesday, September 29, from 4:30 to 6:30. This will be a pizza break in (and spreading out of) our much-beloved tutorial room, Arts 249.

Two dollars buys a slice of pizza and a soda. A veritable bargain -- and a chance to meet other lovers of history!

Students, tutorial leaders and faculty are all welcome.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Happy Alumna News

Tracy Deline, who completed her MA under Michael Swan's supervision in 2001, successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis at UBC on September 3. Her thesis, "Women in Criminal Trials in the Julio-Claudian Era", sounds fascinating. Congratulations, Tracy -- and all the best in your future endeavours!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Second Annual Dave De Brou Memorial Lecture in History

This year, the History Graduate Students' Committee and the Department of History are pleased to welcome Bill Waiser, who will speak on "Howdy's Photo Album". Dr. Waiser will critically examine the 1950s aerial photography work of H.D. McPhail, a former Lancaster bomber pilot, who took photos of farms around North Battleford and urban centres across Canada.

Date: September 29th
Place: Frances Morrison Library Theatre, 311-23rd Street East
Time: 6:15 p.m. (doors) for 7:00 p.m. (lecture)
Admission: Free

Monday, August 17, 2009

New Course

The Department is pleased to be offering an exciting one-time only course in term 2: History 395, "Metis/Mestizo: Mixed Ancestry Peoples in Comparative Context" (taught by Camie Augustus). The course considers the question of why Canada is the only country to recognize an indigenous mixed-ancestry population as a distinct cultural group.

Contact Camie Augustus ( for more information on the course and how to register.

Image: David Garneau, "Cross Addressing", Collection of the Museum of Civilization

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Department is very pleased to see Akira Peters return in September. Akira will complete the final year of a Combined Honours degree in English and History, which she had to defer after a hemorrhagic stroke in June 2008. The cause of her stroke was a rare disease, moyamoya, which affects arteries in the brain.

After many months of recovery at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital in Edmonton, Akira went on to help other brain injury survivors through her volunteer work at Networks Activity Centre (Edmonton). Her good sense of humour and willingness to help others, as well as her perseverance, are being recognised by two awards: the Glenmore Award of Courage and a Brain Injury Association Bursary.

For a few days at least, you can watch an interview (see the Health Matters page for the "Akira Peters" file) with Akira by Su-Ling Goh of Global.

Welcome back, Akira!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Better late than never...

This spring and summer has brought a bumper crop of History graduate students. At May convocation Jonathan Anuik and Byron Plant received Doctor of Philosophy degrees, while Sarah Nickel and Christopher Paige took Master of Arts degrees.

Three more students successfully defended their theses over the summer and will walk the stage in the autumn: Amanda Harrigan (M.A. candidate), Alice Glaze (M.A. candidate) and Jason Zorbas (Ph.D. candidate).

The recent theses of these (former) students show the diversity of research interests within the department, ranging from political activism (Harrigan and Nickel) and identities (Anuik, Glaze and Zorbas) to Canadian policy and administration (Paige and Plant).

Belated congratulations to all of these graduates for their hard work -- and best wishes for future successes!

List of Recent Theses

Jonathan Anuik, "Métis Families and Communities and Christian and Public Schools: The Affirmation and Reclamation of Métis Identities in Saskatchewan, 1885-1979."

Alice Glaze, "
Women Before the Kirk: Godly Discipline in Canongate, 1640-1650."

Amanda Harrigan, "
Patriotism and Treason in the Life and Thought of Jean Paulhan."

Sarah Nickel
, "'The Right to be Heard': Saskatchewan First Nations Political Activism, 1922-1946."

Christopher Paige, "Canada and Chemical Warfare, 1939-1945."

Byron Plant, "The Politics of Indian Administration: A History of "Indian Affairs" in British Columbia, 1945-1969."

Jason Zorbas, "Diefenbaker, Latin America and the Caribbean: The Pursuit of Canadian Autonomy."

Please see the department website for further details.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Congratulations are in order for Dr. Jon Anuik. Besides being a newly minted History PhD (Spring 2009), he was hired just last week to a two-year limited term appointment in Canadian History and Interdisciplinary Studies at Lakehead University. But let us not stop the list of his successes there: Dr. Anuik's research was featured in July's edition of On Campus News. Well done all around, Jon.

Dr. Anuik will be teaching at Lakehead's Orillia campus, so we look forward to hearing dispatches from "smallish" town Ontario and wish him well as he embarks on his first year of full time teaching!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

JURIST, the University of Pittsburgh Law School's Web-based forum for legal news and research, invited our department's very own Pam Jordan to write a piece on prospects for legal reform in Russia. She finds that, so far in Dmitry Medvedev's presidency (since May 2008), "it remains unclear whether he truly supports full governmental transparency and accountability or encourages reforms that would check the power of the Kremlin, two necessary ingredients for legal reform." For the full text, posted this month, please see the following link: .

Monday, July 13, 2009

Félicitations à MARIE-CHRISTINE DUGAL. She has just been awarded a prestigious Bourse de Doctorat en Recherche from FQRSC (Fonds de Recherche sur la Société et la Culture, Québec), which will fully support three years of her Ph.D. programme.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

History in the News

History has been a hot topic in the Canadian news over the last week, with the Dominion Institute's report on the state of historical knowledge in Canada. The Dominion Institute recommends that at least one history class at the high school level be made mandatory across Canada, as many provinces received a failing grade. Saskatatchewan was in eighth place, with a score of F.

See John Gormley's recent article in The Star Phoenix for his opinion piece on the necessity of understanding history in the modern world. The Department's own Bill Waiser is quoted in the article, eloquently outlining the reasons we should learn about about our national history.

Take the Dominion Insitute's quiz to test your own knowledge of Canadian history...

Monday, June 15, 2009

This just in: pictures from the History Graduate Banquet, held at the Western Development Museum on May 24. A good evening was had by happy (now former) students and pleased faculty alike.

Congratulations to our new graduates as they drive back to the future in style!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

H.N. Segall Prize Winner

Heather Stanley presented a paper at the Canadian Society for the History of Medicine conference, held this year at Carleton University (Ottawa), May 29-31. Her paper, "'Vested Interests': The 1902 Midwives Act in Britain and the Construction of Medical Identities", won the H.N. Segall Prize, awarded annually by CSHM for the best graduate paper. As a fellow conference attendee, I can tell you that this year's competition was tough.

Congratulations, Heather!
Congratulations to this year's scholarship winners!

M.A. students KURT KRUEGER, CRYSTAL NATARAJ AND TIM NYBORG have received Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships.

Ph.D. students MICHAEL KIRKPATRICK and HEATHER STANLEY have been awarded SSHRC Doctoral Fellowships.

And last, but by no means least, TINA LECKIE has won a University of Saskatchewan Equity Scholarship.

Welcome to the newest member of our department, GRACE ANN DROVER. She was born on May 22 to proud parents Vickie Lamb Drover and Doug Drover. Vickie's M.A. supervisor reports that "The baby arrived right on her due date ... she shows remarkable punctuality and planning, clearly a Lamb Drover genetic specialization!"

Monday, April 27, 2009

As they say at Staples,
"It's the hap, happiest time of the year!"

As the academic year and all who sail in her stagger to the finish line, let us turn our thoughts to celebrating the impending success of those about to graduate.

This year's HISTORY GRADUATE'S BANQUET will be held on May 24th, the Sunday before convocation, at the Western Development Museum. Cocktails at 5:pm, Dinner at 6:00. The keynote speaker will be Professor Frank Klaassen.

Thanks to the combined efforts of HUSA and the Department of History, tickets for the banquet have been subsidized to such an extent that they are going for just $15 each. Family and friends welcome.

So if you are graduating from any of our fine programs -- Minor, 3 Year, 4 Year, Honours, Double Honours -- please join us so we can raise a glass in your honour.

For tickets and reservations, contact HUSA President Kristina Rissling at

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

No fooling
On April 1, 2009




presentation of

Enemy at the Gate

Autumn 1942. Germany’s assault on the Soviet city of Stalingrad is reaching its peak. The outcome of World War II on the Eastern Front hangs in the balance.

Among the few troops able to make an individual mark on such a battle, characterized by machine warfare and indiscriminate carnage, are the snipers: skilled sharpshooters who strike fear in the heart of every advancing soldier. The real-life story of Russian sniper Vasily Zaitsev (played by Jude Law) forms the core of Enemy at the Gates, the 2001 film directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud (Name of the Rose and Seven Years in Tibet). With one of history’s most titanic battles as their backdrop, Zaitsev and his German rival, Major Koenig (Ed Harris), duel for supremacy and survival.

One of the first English-language blockbusters to deal with the long-neglected Eastern Front, Enemy at the Gates also features Joseph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, and a cameo performance by Bob Hoskins as Nikita Khrushchev.

Introduced by John McCannon, Department of History

DATE & TIME: Wednesday, April 1 @ 5:30 p.m.

PLACE: Arts 241


Monday, March 30, 2009

is now available.

Linda Dietz has done it again. And this time she has outdone herself. Each year about this time, Linda takes the descriptions of courses on offer in the upcoming year along with the newly compiled timetable and all the necessary rules and regulations associated with our various History degree options, and pulls it all together in a handy booklet. Pick up the new edition in the History general office on the 7th floor, or click right here right now to check it out. Start planning your History courses for next year, then make an appointment with a History faculty advisor to seal the deal! To make an appointment, proceed to the 7th floor and sign up on the sigh-up sheet outside the History general office.
Since they asked so nicely, how could we refuse?

"The Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, located in the Diefenbaker Centre on campus, is holding an information session on Thursday, April 2 for students to talk about our graduate programs, and I’m wondering – if you feel it would be appropriate – if you can help us promote the session by forwarding the e-mail message below to your students and invite/encourage them to attend the session if they are at all curious about any of the four programs we offer (MIT, MPA, MPP, and PhD). Click here for a poster providing more information." You could also click here.Link

Monday, March 23, 2009

Simonne Horwitz's academic expertise in the history of the ongoing HIV/AIDs epidemic worldwide has direct relevance to the situation now unfolding in Saskatchewan. CBC News reporter Geoff Leo contacted Simonne (courtesy of a tip from fellow medical historian Erika Dyck) in the course of his investigation of the soaring rate of HIV/AIDs in this province. The story broke today. Simonne (shown here in a happier mood yesterday, at the USSU ceremony at which she received a 2009 Teaching Excellence Award) has been all over CBC radio and television in the last few hours. She was interviewed by Anna Maria Tremonti in part one (starting at the 13th minute on the podcast) of the nationally broadcast The Current (click here to listen), and by Sheila Coles on CBC Saskatchewan's Morning Edition - Extra (click here to listen).

In both cases (the Morning Edition interview is longer and more probing), Simonne presented the truly sobering data in a global and a local context succinctly, clearly, and unflinchingly. In just a few minutes she set out the human elements -- social, cultural, economic, political -- that facilitate the spread of the disease, are ravaged by its consequences, and in which the key to effective responses is to be found. It was nothing less than a call to informed, compassionate, and urgent action.

Next year, Simonne will offer a new honours seminar that directly engages with these issues: History 498.3, "History of HIV/AIDA, With a Special Focus on the Developing World". It now seems that Saskatchewan will also loom large in those discussions.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Department Head Valerie Korinek's pioneering research on the history of gay and lesbian communities on the prairies is featured in a new docudrama, Stubblejumper, a film by David Geiss based on the life of the late Doug Wilson, a one-time grad student in Education whose small ad in a 1975 edition of The Sheaf advertising a gay organization on this campus drew nation-wide media attention and touched off one of the most sustained episodes of gay rights activism in Canadian history. The film played for three nights at the Broadway Theatre recently, and will be broadcast Saturday, March 28th at 9pm on SCN. Don't miss it. Being historians, you might also want to check out Valerie's article "'The Most Openly Gay Person For at Least a Thousand Miles': Doug Wilson and the Politicization of a Province, 1975-83", The Canadian Historical Review, 2003. Click here for the full-page article on Valerie, Doug Wilson, and the film in the March 13th edition of On Campus News.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Whitney Lackenbauer is heading back this way to present a talk entitled:

"Arctic Front, Arctic Homeland: Re-evaluating Canada’s Past Record and Future Prospects in the Circumpolar North".
Thursday, March 26, 2009 at 4:30 PM
Neatby Timlin Theatre (Room 241, Arts Building)

These days, Whitney is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History at St. Jerome's University (federated with the University of Waterloo). Once upon a time (November 2003-August 2004), he was a CRC postdoctoral fellow at the U of S, which allowed him to work on several projects related to indigenous peoples and militarism. His many publications include

Arctic Front: Defending Canadian Interests in the Far North. Toronto: Thomas Allen & Son Ltd., 2008. (With Ken Coates, Bill Morrison, and Greg Poelzer.)


Battle Grounds: The Canadian Military and Aboriginal Lands. Vancouver: UBC Press, 2007. xviii, 350 pp.

Thinking about traveling to Europe this spring?
Of course you are.
Interested in the theatre?
Of course you are.

It only stands to reason, then, that you should know about the following
Study Abroad opportunity:

Drama 285.3: Theatre Studies in London
May 4-21, 2009. Week 1 in Saskatoon, then, 11 glorious days in London!

Cost: UofS tuition, $438, Program Fee, $1500 (lodging, tickets to shows, travel from London to Statford, program overhead); air fair (estimated $1200).

$500 non-refundable deposit due upon acceptance into the course. Remainder of program fee ($1000) due by April 8, 2009.

Click here for further details.




presentation of

Enemy at the Gate

Autumn 1942. Germany’s assault on the Soviet city of Stalingrad is reaching its peak. The outcome of World War II on the Eastern Front hangs in the balance.

Among the few troops able to make an individual mark on such a battle, characterized by machine warfare and indiscriminate carnage, are the snipers: skilled sharpshooters who strike fear in the heart of every advancing soldier. The real-life story of Russian sniper Vasily Zaitsev (played by Jude Law) forms the core of Enemy at the Gates, the 2001 film directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud (Name of the Rose and Seven Years in Tibet). With one of history’s most titanic battles as their backdrop, Zaitsev and his German rival, Major Koenig (Ed Harris), duel for supremacy and survival.

One of the first English-language blockbusters to deal with the long-neglected Eastern Front, Enemy at the Gates also features Joseph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, and a cameo performance by Bob Hoskins as Nikita Khrushchev.

Introduced by John McCannon, Department of History

DATE & TIME: Wednesday, April 1 @ 5:30 p.m.

PLACE: Arts 241


Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The annual History Grad Student Committee Book Pub is taking place at the Faculty Club on Friday March 6th at 3:30pm. (A "book pub" is a "book auction" at which beverages are sold.) This is generally the biggest fundraiser of the year for the HGSC. Not only will a whole lot of swell books be auctioned off at ridiculously low prices, but History graduate students will be auctioning off their research skills -- faculty bidders only I'm afraid -- at the Book Pub as well. This event provides the opportunity to support the HGSC while enhancing your book collection and/or research. The HGSC relies on the Book Pub to fund many of its events throughout the year, including the Keewatin Conference this April.

And know this: UNDERGRADS ARE WELCOME! Indeed, HUSA members are actively working behind the scenes on Book Pub Prep even as we speak. HUSA will therefore receive a cut of the proceeds, which will go towards subsidizing the price of student tickets for the History Graduates' Banquet on May 24th (the Sunday before Convocation).

So, Undergrads! Your money is as good as any grad student's, and your craving for books may well be as highly developed and as likely to be sated by the delicacies that may be had at the Book Pub.

Speaking of money, cash and cheques only, please. Come early and buy often! Hope to see you all there.
Congratulations to Simonne Horwitz, who has been awarded a USSU Teaching Award for 2009, as voted by the students in a campus-wide competition. Only ten such awards are given out annually across the university. Remarkably, Simonne garnered this honour in her first year of full-time teaching for her inaugural edition of History 299.6, Africans on the Move: The History of Voluntary and Involuntary Migration in, and from, Africa between the Earliest Times and the Present. Simonne will receive her award at a ceremony on March 22nd. Congratulations, Simonne!

Please note that Simonne will be teaching this course again next year, along with a new honours seminar, History 498.3, "History of HIV/AIDA, With a Special Focus on the Developing World". The advising season will be upon us shortly, so if you are looking for courses for next year, keep these in mind.
One of the worst kept secrets on campus can finally be revealed.

U of S History Department Awarded Second Canada Research Chair

An associate professor in the Department of History has been awarded $500,000 over the next five years from the Government of Canada to conduct research on the treatment and care for individuals with mental illness.

Erika Dyck, the new Canada Research Chair (CRC) in the History of Medicine, is among the 134 Chairs announced recently by the CRC program, which was created to attract and retain excellent researchers in Canadian universities.

Dyck, a native of Saskatoon, recently authored a book on LSD medical experimentation, titled, Psychedelic Psychiatry: LSD from Clinic to Campus. The historian is now focusing on the political and medical attitudes towards mental illness and their influence on state-funded healthcare, the policy of deinstitutionalization and eugenics. Dyck will explore the relatively unstudied history of eugenics in Western Canada, including Alberta’s Sexual Sterilization Act, and the Saskatchewan government’s turning away from this historic practice of sterilizing “mentally-defective” people deemed unfit for parenthood.

The historical study of deinstitutionalization—the release of mental patients into the care of the community—will involve research groups in Vancouver and Nova Scotia. Working alongside fellow principal co-investigator, Megan Davies of York University, Dyck hopes her overall research program will inform current debates about mental health services. This research program will provide some much-needed historical perspective for contemporary debates over health and mental health care.

"Erika is one of this University's excellent young scholars and a terrific complement to the Department of History's strength in medical and health history." said Peter Stoicheff, Vice-Dean of the Humanities & Fine Arts in the College of Arts & Science. Sources close to What's Up can also confirm that Erika is an outstanding teacher.

Canada Research Chairs are awarded to exceptional emerging researchers, acknowledged by their peers as having the potential to lead in their field. They are nominated by their university and reviewed by a panel of experts from around the world. There are now a total of 25 CRC’s employed at the U of S.

Erika Dyck is the second CRC in the Department of History, joining Jim Miller, our senior CRC scholar in Native-Newcomer Relations.

Congratulations, Erika!

The 2009 History Department Academic Advising Season will run from March 30th to April 24th.

We here at What's Up believe most strongly -- most strongly indeed! -- that courses are best chosen in consultation with a faculty member (or our super-senior-administrator, Linda Dietz) in the context of ACADEMIC ADVISING. People have been known to proceed through their university careers without having consulted an academic advisor, but it is no way to live and doing so is lowly recommended. Most lowly.

Stay tuned for further details about the History Advising Season. In the meantime, if you crave advice before March 30th, feel free to make an appointment to see our Undergrad Director Gordon DesBrisay ( or drop by Arts 721 to see Linda Dietz.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Prof. John-Paul Himka, Department of History and Classics, University of Alberta, will deliver this year’s Mohyla Lecture at St. Thomas More College, February 27, 7:00 pm in Rm 344B. A specialist in nineteenth and twentieth century Ukraine, his presentation is entitled “Divergent Memories: Ukrainians, Jews, and the Holocaust.”

Prof. Himka’s most recent publications include the co-edited volume Letters from Heaven: Popular Religion in Russia and Ukraine. (University of Toronto Press, 2006) and the forthcoming book, scheduled to be released in spring 2009, History on Linden Boards: Last Judgment Iconography in the Carpathians (University of Toronto Press).

The Mohyla Lecture Series is an annual lecture series organized by the Prairie Centre for the Study of Ukrainian Heritage. In existence since 1995, the Mohyla Lecture Series is a high-profile event that serves as a vehicle to promote Ukrainian Studies at the University of Saskatchewan as well as within the wider community. Selected lectures have been published by Heritage Press, the publishing arm of the PCUH (

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Bill Waiser was interviewed this past Saturday by Shelagh Rogers on her new CBC national radio show, "The Next Chapter", in the course of a discussion on stories from the Canadian past that still resonate with Canadians today. To hear a podcast of the show, click here.
The 12th Annual Michael Swan History Honours Colloquium is now history. Last Friday, January 23rd was a great day and our colleagues over in the History Undergraduate Director's office have asked us to pass on their sincere thanks to our friends at the Diefenbaker Centre for making us so welcome; to our own Ingrid Mcgregor for doing the program and posters and for arranging for our food, coffee, and cake; to the grad students who dropped by to lend support, relive past glories, and learn stuff; to the family and friends who turned out in support; to the faculty past and present who came out in record numbers; and, above all, to the sixteen honours students who presented such fine papers and participated in our daylong discussions.

This action shot from the Swan Colloquium captures the Honours students who presented in the afternoon just as the scale of their achievement begins to set in.

We salute, from left to right, James Ingold, Paula Bittman, Deana Diener, Derek Strelioff, Carolyn Bartlett, Shaun Fiolleau, Gayle Cluett, Mark Geldof, James Dobson, Ryan Winquist, and Adam Grieve.

Monday, January 19, 2009

My Fellow Historians,

The time has come for us all to embrace change. To admit that the era of the 11th Annual Michael Swan History Honours Colloquium is over. It served us well, but we cannot go back. We must, in these challenging times, push forward.

It is time, Historians, for us all to embrace change. To pull together so that we might all, every one of us, seize this moment to build anew!

"A new what?" you may ask.

A new colloquium for a new year and a new generation of prospective History Honours graduates, that's what.

And so, Historians, let us us all welcome and embrace and get with the program you can read simply by clicking right here!

For the

12th Annual Michael Swan History Honours Colloquium

is now upon us!

Friday, January 23rd from 10am to 4pm
in the friendly confines of the
Diefenbaker Canada Centre.

On that day, in that place,

in that hall of concrete, glass, learning, and cake,

Sixteen, possibly fifteen, of our top senior History Honours students will step forth

to present and take questions on their

best ... history ... papers ... ever.

Topics will include:

Victorian cartoons
Rwandan genocide
Fascism and The Sopranos
Gender and Sexuality in Nazi Germany
Buffalo Bill
The Bombing of Hiroshima

and much else...

for all or any part of the day.

The audience will comprise students, family, friends, faculty, and, we very much hope, YOU.

Absolutely everybody is welcome to spend as much or as little time with us as they wish.

So come join us at the Diefenbaker Centre this Friday, and see where History might lead you. Expect a warm welcome whatever the weather.

Plus, if you arrive in the noon hour you might just get a sandwich and a damn fine piece of cake.

Some things, after all, ought not to change.

Click here for the program, if you have not already clicked up there.