Daniel Francis

Reading the National Narrative


May 29, 2013

Top Read This Week:

The decision by a the parliamentary heritage committee in Ottawa to commence an investigation into Canadian history, including how the subject is taught in schools, touched off a bit of a squall from people who believe the government should keep its hands off history. I’m not sure why. Lindsay Gibson has a review and an analysis of the controversy at The History Education Network website.

Meanwhile in Great Britain the...

May 13, 2013

Last weekend at the BC Book Prizes gala award ceremony in Victoria my book Trucking in British Columbia (Harbour Publishing) was nominated for the Bill Duthie Booksellers’ Choice Award. As I expected, I lost out to the very worthy winner, Shelley Fralic's history of the Vancouver Sun newspaper. Naturally it was a letdown – there was cash involved! – but principally I was disappointed because it meant that I didn’t get to deliver my acceptance speech which would have included a brief tribute...

May 13, 2013

The other evening I was giving a talk about Louis Taylor, Vancouver’s longest-serving mayor, to an audience downtown. As often happens on such occasions, someone asked me why I chose to write a book about Taylor. (My biography, L.D.: Mayor Louis Taylor and the Rise of Vancouver was published by Arsenal Pulp Press and won the Vancouver Book Award in 2004.) Most biographies are written about people who are well known – artists, politicians, porn stars, whatever. But as I explained to my...