Daniel Francis

Reading the National Narrative

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July 19, 2021

To its credit the Vancouver Sun has signed up Steven Hume to write a series of historical articles to commemorate BC's sesquicentennial of Confederation.

Hume, who is one of BC's finest writers, began his account of the province's history last Saturday and it contines for the rest of the week. 

"And so in 1871, the fire bells rang — as much in...

July 16, 2021

On July 20 British Columbia commemorates 150 years since it joined the rest of Canada. There will doubtless be many celebrations but a new history of the province written by a group of academics and social justice progressives is not one of them.

Challenging Racist "British Columbia": 150 Years and Counting is a warts and all account -- check that, it is an only-the-...

July 1, 2021

Canada's historians, through their professional association, the Canadian Historical Association, have chosen to mark Canada Day this year by releasing a statement about the role of genocide in the country's past.

You can read the statement here.

 

June 23, 2021

My friend Gil Hewlett passed away the other day. He was 80.

Gil was a respected marine scientist who grew up in Lake Cowichan on Vancouver Island. He told the story of walking past the Vancouver Aquarium one day when he was a young man arguing with himself about what to do with the rest of his life. This was 1964 when the Aquarium was just getting into orca research. Gil went inside to...

June 4, 2021

Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart has served notice he wants to change the name of Trutch Street, a Kitsilano neighbourhood thoroughfare. The street is named for a nineteenth century colonial official in British Columbia.

There is a lot of debate these days about removing statues and renaming buildings, but this one is a no-brainer.

Several years ago Canada's History magazine compiled a tongue-in-cheek list of "worst Canadians" and invited me to make a contribution....

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