Politics & labour

#473 Small cities take centre stage

Michael Lait reviews two books: Small Cities, Big Issues: Reconceiving Community in a Neoliberal Era by Christopher Walmsley and Terry Kading (editors) Edmonton: Athabasca University Press, 2018 $37.95 / 9781771991636 Free pdf available here. * No Straight Lines: Local Leadership and the Path From Government to Governance in Small Cities by Terry Kading (editor) Calgary:…
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#468 Power, petroleum, and pipelines

Costly Fix: Power, Politics and Nature in the Tar Sands by Ian Urquhart Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2018 $39.95 / 9781487594619 Oil’s Deep State: How the Petroleum Industry Undermines Democracy and Stops Action on Global Warming by Kevin Taft Toronto: Lorimer, 2017 $29.95 / 9781459409972 The Big Stall: How Big Oil and Think Tanks…
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#454 The home children of Cowichan

Marjorie: Too Afraid To Cry. A Home Child Experience by Patricia Skidmore Toronto: Dundurn, 2012 $30.00 / 9781459703391 * Marjorie: Her War Years. A British Home Child in Canada by Patricia Skidmore Toronto: Dundurn, 2018 $30.00 / 9781459741669 * Both books reviewed by Sylvia Crooks First published December 26, 2018 *        …
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#452 Jewish arrival and survival

Seeking the Fabled City: The Canadian Jewish Experience by Allan Levine Toronto: Penguin Random House Canada (McClelland & Stewart), 2018 $45.00  /  9780771048050 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb First published Dec. 21, 2018 * Have you heard the one about the Winnipeg paper that tried to explain the ways of this strange new people, the Jews,…
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#437 Otter goes global

Otter’s Journey Through Indigenous Language and Law by Lindsay Borrows Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $32.95 / 9780774836586 Reviewed by Hadley Friedland First published Dec. 3, 2018 * Lindsay Borrows is both a gifted story-teller and a meticulous researcher. In her first book, Otter’s Journey Through Indigenous Language and Law, readers benefit from both strengths. Borrows’…
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#433 Discord on the Pacific slope

Before and After the State: Politics, Poetics, and People(s) in the Pacific Northwest by Allan K. McDougall, Lisa Philips, and Daniel L. Boxberger Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $34.95 / 9780774836685 Reviewed by John Douglas Belshaw * One cannot these days escape the slogan of the Trump campaign: “Make America Great Again.” Set aside GDP, living…
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#429 Trail, the bomb, and Blaylock

Codename Project 9: How a Small British Columbia City Helped Create the Atomic Bomb by Ron Verzuh CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2018 $13.08 / 9781720820703 Reviewed by Michael Sasges First published Nov. 22, 2018 *   Codename Project 9 is a small book that engenders reflections on some big history. Since 1945, journalists and scholars…
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#424 In search of Laura Jamieson

The Last Suffragist Standing: The Life and Times of Laura Marshall Jamieson by Veronica Strong-Boag Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $32.95  /  9780774838696 Reviewed by Patricia Roy First published Nov. 15, 2018. * The Life and Times is an old-fashioned title, but nothing is old-fashioned about this book. The sub-title is especially appropriate for a biography…
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#421 Suffragist city

One Hundred Years of Struggle: The History of Women and the Vote in Canada by Joan Sangster Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $27.95 / 9780774835336 Reviewed by Barbara Messamore First published Nov. 12, 2018 * Joan Sangster’s clear, concise, and lively treatment of the women’s suffrage movement in Canada provides a broad historical survey while presenting…
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#419 Talking federal politics

Talking Past Each Other: Quebec and the Federal Dialogue in Canada, 1867-2017 by Hamish Telford New York and Bern: Peter Lang, 2018 $99.95 (U.S.) / 9781433150487 Reviewed by Nelson Wiseman First published Nov. 10, 2018 * Hamish Telford, professor of political science at the University of the Fraser Valley, media commentator and frequent Ormsby reviewer, is…
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#411 The boy Attorney-General of B.C.

ESSAY: A Person of Some Consequence: Attorney-general George Hunter Cary (1832-1866) by Robert Ratcliffe Taylor First published October 31st, 2018 * Victoria historian Robert Ratcliffe Taylor previously contributed an essay to these pages  on the career of the forgotten architect Hermann Tiedemann (The Ormsby Review no. 211, November 26, 2017). Now Taylor turns his attention…
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#348 The ghost of Jack Munro

On the Line: A History of the British Columbia Labour Movement by Rod Mickleburgh Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2018 $44.95  /  97871550178265 Reviewed by Bryan D. Palmer First published Aug. 22, 2018 * For four tumultuous months in 1983, the grassroots labour initiative in B.C. called the Solidarity Coalition–which took its name as an offshoot…
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#333 Indigenous canoe racing

Southern Northwest Coast Indigenous Canoe Racing: A Brief History by Alan L. Hoover Victoria: NWC Canoe Publications, 2018 $14.95 / 9781775011903 Reviewed by Sanford Osler First published Jul. 2, 2018 * Once a year my local oceanfront park in North Vancouver fills with campers bringing dozens of long sleek wooden canoes to race over the…
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#311 I fought the law, and the dog won

The Dog Lover Unit: Lessons in Courage from the World’s K9 Cops by Rachel Rose New York: St. Martin’s Press (Macmillan Publishers), 2017 $28.99  /  9781250110749 Reviewed by Bonnie Reilly Schmidt First published May 30, 2018 * Rachel Rose’s The Dog Lover Unit: Lessons in Courage from the World’s K9 Cops is a surprising departure…
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#309 Christy Clark’s downfall

First published May 28, 2018. A Matter of Confidence: The Inside Story of the Political Battle for BC by Rob Shaw and Richard Zussman Victoria: Heritage House, 2018. $22.95  /  9781772032543 Reviewed by Hamish Telford * The British Columbia provincial election on May 9, 2017 was one for the history books. After a long night…
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#308 A little revolution, please

First published May 25, 2018. City on Edge: A Rebellious Century of Vancouver Protests, Riots, and Strikes by Kate Bird, foreword by Charles Demers Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2017. $32.95  /  9781771643139 Reviewed by Larry Hannant * We would be remiss if we did not preface this review with a notation that Michael Barnholden has previously…
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#307 Why Liberals dominate federally

First published May 24, 2018. The Canadian Party System: An Analytic History by Richard Johnston Vancouver: UBC Press, 2017. $55  /  9780774836074 Reviewed by Adam Coombs *      Few political parties in countries within the Westminster political system have been as successful over the course of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries as the Liberal Party…
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#302 Middle class artist on relief

Alan Caswell Collier, Relief Stiff: An Artist’s Letters from Depression-era British Columbia by Peter Neary (editor) Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $45.00  /  9780774834988 Reviewed by Daniel Francis First published May 8, 2018 * Most British Columbians live within an easy drive of one of the unemployment relief camps established by the federal government during the…
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#279 The wisdom of Solomon

The Clean Money Revolution: Reinventing Power, Purpose, and Capitalism by Joel Solomon with Tyee Bridge Gabriola Island: New Society Publishers, 2017 $29.99  /  9780865718395 Reviewed by Jawad Qureshy First published April 2, 2018 * Born in Tennessee in 1954, Joel Solomon was educated at Vassar College, worked as national youth co-ordinator on Jimmy Carter’s election campaign…
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#258 We stole it fair and square

The Reconciliation Manifesto: Recovering the Land, Rebuilding the Economy by Arthur Manuel and Grand Chief Ronald Derrickson, with a preface by Naomi Klein Toronto: James Lorimer and Company, 2017 $22.95  /  9781459409613 Reviewed by J.R. (Jim) Miller First published March 4, 2018 *   In the conversation about reconciliation that Canadians are having at the…
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