Sketches from a Young Country: The Images of Grip Magazine

By Carmen Cumming

© 1997

The Canadian political and social discussion of the late nineteenth century owed a great deal to Grip, the satirical magazine that kept a vigilant eye on national affairs from 1873 to 1894. Illustrated and edited by an energetic, talented young reformer named John W. Bengough, Grip featured sketches, poetry, and political invective. Bengough's caricatures of dignitaries and cartoons of political situations were supplemented in at least two periods by the acerbic commentary of socialist pioneer T. Phillips Thompson. Together, the two men provided a running account and critique of the era's attitudes on class, sex, race, and public policy. Bengough was part of a broad progressive alliance that linked farm and labour agitators with Christian intellectuals, alarmed about the worst excesses of turn-of-the-century capitalism. Grip was an early, and righteous, crusader for this liberal, Protestant, reformist view.

Sketches from a Young Country is the first comprehensive study to evaluate this historically important magazine, assess the motivations of its authors, and set both in social and political context. The author begins by discussing the magazine's visual contribution to its time, then explores its relationship with the federal and Ontario reform parties and its anti-Tory bias. Later chapters examine Grip's response to Western development, its descent into 'race and creed' propaganda in the late 1880s, its anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist leanings under Thompson's influence, and its stance on such social issues as women's rights, aboriginal issues, and law and order.

Containing over a hundred of Bengough's cartoons, with captions to clarify contemporary references, and offering an assessment of Grip in relation to its British and American counterparts, Sketches from a Young Country makes an exciting contribution to popular history, Canadian politics, and the history of journalism.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 215 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.9in x 0.9in x 9.0in
Product Formats

SaveUP TO 9239

Book Formats

SKU# SP000117

  • PUBLISHED DEC 1997

    From: $28.46

    Regular Price: $37.95

    ISBN 9780802076465
  • PUBLISHED NOV 1997

    From: $70.50

    Regular Price: $94.00

Quick Overview

The satires and cartoons of Grip magazine, especially the drawing of John Bengough, provide a revealing glimpse into Canadian political and social life in the early years of confederation.

Sketches from a Young Country: The Images of Grip Magazine

By Carmen Cumming

© 1997

The Canadian political and social discussion of the late nineteenth century owed a great deal to Grip, the satirical magazine that kept a vigilant eye on national affairs from 1873 to 1894. Illustrated and edited by an energetic, talented young reformer named John W. Bengough, Grip featured sketches, poetry, and political invective. Bengough's caricatures of dignitaries and cartoons of political situations were supplemented in at least two periods by the acerbic commentary of socialist pioneer T. Phillips Thompson. Together, the two men provided a running account and critique of the era's attitudes on class, sex, race, and public policy. Bengough was part of a broad progressive alliance that linked farm and labour agitators with Christian intellectuals, alarmed about the worst excesses of turn-of-the-century capitalism. Grip was an early, and righteous, crusader for this liberal, Protestant, reformist view.

Sketches from a Young Country is the first comprehensive study to evaluate this historically important magazine, assess the motivations of its authors, and set both in social and political context. The author begins by discussing the magazine's visual contribution to its time, then explores its relationship with the federal and Ontario reform parties and its anti-Tory bias. Later chapters examine Grip's response to Western development, its descent into 'race and creed' propaganda in the late 1880s, its anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist leanings under Thompson's influence, and its stance on such social issues as women's rights, aboriginal issues, and law and order.

Containing over a hundred of Bengough's cartoons, with captions to clarify contemporary references, and offering an assessment of Grip in relation to its British and American counterparts, Sketches from a Young Country makes an exciting contribution to popular history, Canadian politics, and the history of journalism.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 215 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.9in x 0.9in x 9.0in
  • Author Information

    Carman Cumming is an adjunct professor of history at Carleton University, and author of Secret Craft: The Journalism of Edward Farrer.

Related Titles