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Writer & Historian

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Posts Tagged ‘ labour ’

Invoking Labour History to Win in West Virginia – A Strike Analysis

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March 14, 2018
Invoking Labour History to Win in West Virginia – A Strike Analysis

“A union movement in America will always be a scandal (because) the subversive thing about labor is not the strike, but the idea of solidarity.” – Tom Geoghegan in Which Side Are You On? The nine-day West Virginia teachers’ strike that ended on March 7, 2018, revealed how workers can and will invoke labour history to...
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Two B.C. Labour Rebels – A Book Review

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August 6, 2017
Two B.C. Labour Rebels – A Book Review

Labour activists Robert Gosden and Albert “Ginger” Goodwin are the subject of two books I reviewed in BC Studies (#194, Summer 2017). Rebel Life and Goodwin book review – p. 1-3
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Proletarian Cromwell – A Labour History Essay

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May 17, 2017
Proletarian Cromwell – A Labour History Essay

Canadian labour historians have often cited politically inspired poems to portray first-hand the misery of the workplace, the poverty experienced by working families, the inequality perpetrated by the capitalist system, or to describe the agency of the working class in seeking justice against those who exercise hegemony over them. But few have been inclined...
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Hail a Canadian Labour Hero – A Book Review

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April 5, 2017
Hail a Canadian Labour Hero – A Book Review

Jon Bartlett and Rika Reubsaat, Soviet Princeton: Slim Evans and the 1932-33 Miners’ Strike (Vancouver: New Star Books, 2016), 126 pp., $19 paper. Arthur “Slim” Evans has long been a notable figure in Canadian labour history, most often associated with the famed On-to-Ottawa Trek that he led in 1935 in an effort to improve conditions in the...
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Hell’s History – A Book Review

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March 2, 2017

With this short book, Tom Sandborn, labour reporter for the tyee.ca, and the United Steelworkers have reminded us of how deadly slow and ineffective workplace safety laws still are in spite of a law passed after the Westray disaster. RV #97 Getting away with murder  
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Farewell, Bob White – An Appreciation

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February 24, 2017
Farewell, Bob White – An Appreciation

Bob White, who died of undisclosed causes on February 19, 2017, was one of my heroes and I’ll miss him, as will many working people all over Canada. I wasn’t close friend, more an admirer from afar. As a communications representative for the Canadian Union of Public Employees CUPE, I was often awed by...
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Measure 97 in Oregon

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October 22, 2016
Measure 97 in Oregon

I am a Canadian living in Oregon who is constantly shocked to watch Americans shoot themselves in the foot (and the head) when it comes to demanding that corporations pay taxes. Yes, pay some taxes to help the community. I have been even more astonished to watch ordinary working Americans support Donald J. Trump...
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Labour rebels shaped BC history – A book review

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April 21, 2016
Labour rebels shaped BC history – A book review

Mark Leier, Rebel Life: The Life and Times of Robert Gosden, revised edition (Vancouver: New Star, 2013), 183 pages, soft cover, $21; Laura Ellyn, Ginger Goodwin: A Worker’s Friend (Toronto: Between the Lines, 2016), 114 pages, soft cover, $23.95 It’s a minor miracle that labour historian Mark Leier’s revision of his original 1999 book...
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Joe Hill and Salt official selections

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March 20, 2016
Joe Hill and Salt official selections

My two short documentary films, Joe Hill’s Secret Canadian Hideout and Remembering Salt, are official selections in the 2016 Reel Work Labor Film Festival. They will be screened on Monday, April 25, 7 p.m., at the Service Employees International Union Hall, 517 Mission St., Santa Cruz, CA. See www.reelwork.org . Coming this summer My...
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The 33 – A Film Review

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November 20, 2015
The 33 – A Film Review

I was bubbling over with questions after seeing The 33, a new film about the 2010 mining accident that buried 33 miners alive in Chile’s San Jose mine. But I was also concerned that the filmmakers had chosen Hollywood star power to tell this story of local courage and community resistance. We too seldom...
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Books