Politics & labour

#507 What rhymes with alma mater

The Hundred-Year Trek: A History of Student Life at UBC by Sheldon Goldfarb, with a preface by the Right Honourable Kim Campbell Victoria: Heritage House, 2017 $32.95 / 9781772032239 Reviewed by Herbert Rosengarten * When UBC, then situated in a few buildings at Vancouver General Hospital, opened its doors in 1915, fewer than 400 students…
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#497 Vancouver’s master broadcaster

George Garrett: Intrepid Reporter by George Garrett Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2019 $26.95 / 9781550178661 Reviewed by Michael Sasges * George Garrett: Intrepid Reporter is important reading for anyone interested in Vancouver politics and journalism in the last fifty years of the previous century. As a reporter for radio station CKNW from 1956 to 1999,…
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#496 Too much sail, not enough ballast

Across Oceans of Law: The Komagata Maru and Jurisdiction in the Time of Empire by Renisa Mawani Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 2018 $27.95 (U.S.) / 9780822370352 Reviewed by Hugh Johnston * Renisa Mawani writes a thoroughly academic prose, not intended for a casual audience. Even so, her book will have fans, especially among…
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#494 Mycology, MDA, and Hells Angels

85 Grams: Art Williams, Drug Czar by Daryl Ashby Victoria: Tellwell Talent, 2018 $19.95 / 9781773703503 Reviewed by Kathryn Neilson * During the 1970s, Arthur James Williams ran the largest MDA lab in North America near the small town of Ladysmith on Vancouver Island. With assistance from trusted confidants, he produced and distributed millions of…
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#492 Future-making in Haida Gwaii

Shaping the Future on Haida Gwaii: Life Beyond Settler Colonialism by Joseph Weiss Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $32.95 / 9780774837590 Reviewed by Molly Clarkson * I’ll admit that I approached Dr. Joseph Weiss’s Shaping the Future on Haida Gwaii: Life Beyond Settler Colonialism with a not-insignificant amount of trepidation. Another ethnographic examination of the Haida…
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#475 Ian Waddell’s front row seat

Take the Torch: A Political Memoir by Ian Waddell Gibsons: Nightwood Editions, 2018 $22.95 / 9780889713475 Reviewed by Rod Drown First published Jan. 30, 2019 * In Take the Torch, long-time British Columbian New Democratic Party politician Ian Waddell tells, in detail and with humour, the story of how a Scottish boy made good in…
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#474 Envision precision decisions

How Churchill Waged War: The Most Challenging Decisions of the Second World War by Allen Packwood Barnsley, UK: Pen & Sword Books, 2018 $34.95 (U.S.)  / 9781473893894 See here for North American publisher Reviewed by Peter Clarke First published Jan. 29, 2019 * Each new book about Winston Churchill inevitably faces the question of whether…
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#473 Small cities take centre stage

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: University of Calgary Press, 2018…
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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 (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, by…
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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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