Inéz Petrazzini, research assistant and a student in International Development at the University of Ottawa, talked about Recipro at the Shared Online Projects Initiative (SOPI) Showcase Event on April 29, 2021. The celebration was hosted by Dr. Aline Germain-Rutherford, Vice-Provost, Academic Affairs, University of Ottawa and Dr. David Hornsby, Associate Vice-President, Teaching and Learning, Carleton University. Developed by an inter-university partnership that includes the participation of students in courses in History and Sociology, the Recipro website project focuses on the history of international solidarity and centres on the convergence of pedagogy, science, and digital humanities.
Inéz Petrazzini is a third-year student completing an honours bachelor’s degree in International Development and Globalization (CO-OP) at the University of Ottawa. She worked as a Research and Teacher’s Assistant and Webmaster on the Recipro team. Her responsibilities included guiding students with their digital projects, building, developing, and updating the Omeka website, creating and contributing content for the Recipro project, as well as cataloguing, translating, and migrating content provided by the mentioned professors onto Omeka. Some of her interests include global politics, sustainable development projects, digital humanities, visual arts, and music.
In 1975, Indonesian forces overran East Timor, just days after it had declared independence from Portugal. Canadian officials knew the invasion was coming and initially endorsed Indonesian rule. The ensuing occupation of the Southeast Asian country lasted twenty-four years.
Challenge the Strong Wind recounts the evolution of Canadian government policy toward East Timor from 1975 to its 1999 independence vote. During this time, Canadian civil society groups and NGOs worked in support of Timorese independence activists by promoting an alternative Canadian foreign policy that focused on self-determination and human rights. After following the lead of pro-Indonesian allies in the 1970s and ’80s, by the 1990s Ottawa had yielded to pressure from these NGOs and began to make its own decisions, eventually pushing like-minded countries to join it in supporting Timorese self-rule.
David Webster draws on previously untapped archival sources to articulate both government and non-government perceptions of the crisis. Human rights, competing nationalist claims, and peacemaking – key twentieth-century themes – intersect in East Timor, and the conflict provides a model of multilevel dialogue, citizen diplomacy, and novel approaches to resolving complex disputes. Ultimately, Webster criticizes the Canadian government for complicity in a near genocide, demonstrating that a clear-eyed view of international history must include non-state perspectives.
This sharply drawn work will be required reading for scholars studying Canadian history, foreign policy, international relations, human rights, Southeast Asia, and social activism.
*Featured image: Lewis Perinbam, 1987 (Source: Unknown photographer/LAC e999919839-u).
Public history is about taking history beyond the traditional academic setting and applying it to real-world challenges. It is history that is aimed at being accessible to the public. This is exactly what Anna Kozlova, a PhD Candidate at the Department of History at Carleton University, has been doing over the past several months in her MITACS-funded research project “Two case studies in the public history of international development policies in Canada: the Lebanese Special Measures Program (1975-1990) and The Life of Lewis Perinbam (1925-2008)”.
In this interview with Dr. Samantha Cutrara, Dr. Glassford talks about a letter sent home from London in 1943 to demonstrate how prominent emotional labour and creating networks of home was for many women in the Red Cross. We talk about gender, and gendered expectations of care and service during the war, and how women’s experiences and expectations may have grated against these. This interview discusses the use of primary sources, women and WWII, and largely about emotions and caring through the lens of the Canadian Red Cross’ overseas humanitarian work.
Note: This conversation was recorded early in the COVID-19 pandemic.
More about Sarah: Sarah Glassford is a social historian and an archivist in the Leddy Library at the University of Windsor. She is the author of Mobilizing Mercy: A History of the Canadian Red Cross, and co-editor of A Sisterhood of Suffering and Service: Women and Girls of Canada and Newfoundland during the First World War.
In November 2020, two books on the Spanish Civil War, Guerre d’Espagne et socialisme international: Dernière chance pour l’ordre démocratique d’entre-deux-guerres by Nicolas Lépine, and Not for King or Country: Edward Cecil-Smith, the Communist Party of Canada, and the Spanish Civil War by Tyler Wentzell, were launched as part of the Ottawa Historical Association’s first virtual book event. This event was organized with the help of Dr. Dominique Marshall of the CNHH and was co-hosted by Dr. Marshall and, historian and war journalist, Michael Petrou.
Held in mid-February 2021, this webinar was sponsored by the CNHH featuring five academics coming together from different aspects of Canadian foreign policy and aid relations: David Webster (Bishop’s University), Jill Campbell-Miller (Carleton University), Nassisse Solomon (Western University), April Ingham (Pacific People’s Partnership), Dru Oja Jay (co-author Paved with Good Intentions), and moderated by Bianca Mugyenyi (Canadian Foreign Policy Institute).
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In the Winter of 2020, I had the opportunity to work with the communications department at the World University Service of Canada, or WUSC, to help sort through decades worth of documents, photos, and other forms of media stored in its Ottawa office. Shortly after the First World War, WUSC, under its original name, European Student Relief, was created in Switzerland to help support European students displaced by the war. Although the archives I had the chance inventory did not span all the period back to the 1920s, they helped to paint a picture of the work WUSC has done in the last several decades, and the aid they have been able to provide to students on an international level. While most of WUSC’s archives are held in an off-site storage facility, a small portion of them are still stored in their main office and needed to be inventoried.
This post originally appeared on Active History and is cross-posted here with permission.
“I just hope he’s at a cottage without a cell signal and wi-fi.”
I said that to my mother-in-law several times during a recent visit to Cape Breton. After all, I told her, the book project that Greg Donaghy was co-editing with myself and fellow historian Stacey Barker had recently been progressing ahead of schedule (Breaking Barriers, Shaping Worlds: Canadian Women and the Search for Global Order, UBC Press, 2021). Perhaps he felt no need to respond to my texts and emails quickly. But even as I said it, I knew it was not right. If Greg was anything, he was conscientious and dedicated to his work. Emails, texts, and phone calls rarely went unanswered. The thought of him lounging at a cottage while his inbox filled up was, in fact, patently un-Greg-like, but I did not let myself think about alternative explanations. I had been waiting to hear from him for some guidance before I undertook a few revisions to our introduction. On July 5, we all learned the terrible truth – a heart attack left Greg in a coma, which led to his death on Canada Day.
History Beyond Borders publishes e-dossiers on international history composed of documents and images from both government and non-government sources on international events during the 20th century, with a focus on relations between the developed North and the less developed countries of the global South. Continue reading
The Asian-African Conference Bulletin, published daily during the African-Asian conference at Bandung in April 1955, 65 years ago, is a significant and unused source in international history. In its pages, as much as in the conference hall around it, was born the idea of Asian-African solidarity and non-alignment. The Bulletin and other sources from the conference are now digitized as an e-dossier at historybeyondborders.ca (a new web site to which CNNH members and readers are invited to contribute).