Why do we still print the course syllabus?

Every August, my department puts out a call for print orders for course syllabi. All course instructors are asked to submit digital files to be printed for thousands of undergraduate and graduate students. On the first day of classes, professors and teaching assistants march through the halls with large stacks […]


The complicated history of building pipelines in Canada

The federal government’s $4.5 billion decision to buy the Trans Mountain pipeline has set off a new debate about the controversial project. Canada has a long history of building energy pipelines, but Canadian attitudes toward major energy pipeline projects have changed over time. Unease over the environmental effects of pipeline […]


Nature’s Past Episode 61: Why Graduate Students Study Environmental History

Episode 61: Why Graduate Students Study Environmental History Download Audio Subscribe                  Four amazing stories about four impressive graduate students in environmental history. Ever wonder why someone might study environmental history and write a dissertation in this field? On this episode, we speak with four […]


Immersed in the Past: Room-Scale Virtual Reality for Public History

Last year, I wrote about my early impressions of the possible uses of virtual reality technology for public history and history education. I also led a session in my fourth-year digital history class on virtual reality and its potential for generating a sense of historical presence, an ability to simulate […]


Nature’s Past Episode 60: New Research in Canadian Environmental History

Episode 60: New Research in Canadian Environmental History Download Audio   Subscribe                  From time to time, we like to draw your attention to new research in the field of Canadian environmental history. We interview authors about new books, we speak with graduate students about […]


Nature’s Past Episode 57: Why Study Canada?

Episode 57: Why Study Canada? [33:09] Download Audio                  Why study Canadian environmental history? Where does Canada fit in global perspectives of environmental history? This episode focuses on the role of Canada in environmental history and explores some of the reasons why some scholars study […]


BBC World Service Episode on the Creation of Modern Canada

  Over the weekend, I appeared on  BBC World Service on an episode of The Forum.  The episode was a wide-ranging discussion of Canadian history since Confederation in 1867. I participated on a panel alongside Margaret Macmillan and Phillip Buckner. You can listen to the full episode in the player above.


Active History in Solitude

Next month, I will start my first sabbatical. To prepare, I just finished reading Michael Harris’s new book,  Solitude: A Singular Life in a Crowded World. The book came out in late April just as my teaching semester wrapped up. The timing couldn’t be better. Sabbaticals are another part of […]


Nature’s Past Episode 56: Animal Metropolis

Episode 56: Animal Metropolis [38:08] Download Audio To kick off the 2017 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences in Toronto, Ontario, I joined two of the editors of a new volume on histories of human-animal relations in urban Canada published by University of Calgary Press. Joanna Dean and Christabelle Sethna […]