Tuesday, May 26, 2009

New History books from Toronto

When nothing else is jumping, time to look for new books coming in Canadian history.

Sean Cadigan's new history of Newfoundland and Labrador is out from University of Toronto Press. I have not seen it, but it seems situated to be the new standard history, taking its place with UTP's other big regional histories like Jean Barman's West Beyond The West on British Columbia, and Gerald Friesen's Canadian Prairies. If it can stand with those, Cadigan's will be some good history. Barman's has been revised a couple of times; I don't think Friesen's has, which is too bad, but probably says something about the book selling potential of B.C versus the [generic] prairies.

Also imminent from UTP: 'Union Is Strength': W.L. Mackenzie, the Children of Peace, and the Emergence of Joint Stock Democracy in Upper Canada by Albert Schrauwers. I would have thought there was practically nothing to link together Mackenzie, the Children of Peace, and joint-stock enterprise, but Schrauwers says otherwise.
Schrauwers shows how the overlapping boards of unincorporated joint stock companies managed by both Toronto reformers and the Children of Peace produced a culture of deliberative democracy in competition with the "gentlemanly capitalism" of chartered corporations.
Who am I to disagree? Sounds worth a look.
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