Friday, May 29, 2009

Live-blogging the CHA conference?

Ah, no. Canadian history hasn't discovered the blog yet, as I was saying. I found precisely one blog post related to the conference.

But it's a keeper. I'm glad to have found Andrew Smith's CanHist blog and this post about the conference.

[Update June 1: Andrew Smith's blog has more CHA postings since I wrote this. On the Congress, Ajzenstat's not to be missed too]

Today the CHA website has a list of prize nominees posted in April, though the prizes themselves were given out on Tuesday, May 26. It's from the publicists at Between the Lines Press and not from any historical source that I learned that Ian McKay was awarded the CHA's John A. Macdonald Prize the other day. From the BTL press release:
At its Annual Meeting in Ottawa, the Canadian Historical Association awarded the thirty-first Sir John A. Macdonald Prize to Ian McKay’s Reasoning Otherwise: Leftists and the People's Enlightenment in Canada, 1890-1920. The prize is awarded annually to the non-fiction work of Canadian history "judged to have made the most significant contribution to an understanding of the Canadian past."

Reasoning Otherwise is the first volume of Ian McKay’s groundbreaking multi-part history of the left in Canada. Using the strategy of “reconnaissance” (investigating history without purposely adding up the good and bad) first outlined in Rebels, Reds, Radicals, McKay examines the people and events that led to the rise of the left in Canada from 1890 to the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike. By seeking out the stories of leftist movements and leftism in Canada in this substantial work, McKay fills an astonishing void in Canadian scholarship, providing a comprehensive survey of a subject on which little else has been written except that which takes a very specific viewpoint or which focuses only on a portion of the whole.

Ian McKay is Professor of History at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.
The claim that the history of the left in Canada is "an astonishing void" rather staggers me, but that's no knock on the book.
Follow @CmedMoore