Thursday, November 21, 2019

This month at Canada's History

Happy as I am to be writing feature articles for Canada's History, I still pine a little when a new issue arrives without my column. An unbroken run of about 25 years is hard to break with.

Good issue, though, particularly Douglas Hunter on "The Great Viking Hoax," which draws on his recent book about the fraudulent Norse hoard allegedly found near Beardmore, in northwestern Ontario in the 1930s.

Hunter points to one reason the Beardmore fraud lingered so long was: once the head of the Royal Ontario Museum bought into it, professional staff loyally promoted it, even though they knew otherwise. He speaks of "identification with institutional power." Worth thinking about. (He also notes things have changed at the ROM, as he couldn't have written his book without its enthusiastic cooperation.)

Also in the issue: a powerful piece for the thirtieth anniversary of the Ecole Polytechnique murders of 1989. Francine Pelletier says "everyone remembers" where they were, and while it's maybe not everyone anymore, I do. I had an exam to give the next morning, and it was emotional.

Plus David Franks on Paul Robeson. Bruce Kemp on the 1812 schooner Nancy.  And more, including the Holiday Book and Gift Guide, which is a really wide-ranging sample of the CanHist books (etc.) of 2019 . Good to see so many advertisers getting in on that.

Lots of the issue is online here.  Subscribe anyway. 
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