The Professionalization of History in English Canada
The study of history in Canada has a history of its own, and its development as an academic discipline is a multifaceted one. The Professionalization of History in English Canada charts the transition of the study of history from a leisurely pastime to that of a full-blown academic career for university-trained scholars - from the mid-nineteenth to the late twentieth century.
Donald Wright argues that professionalization was not, in fact, a benign process, nor was it inevitable. It was deliberate. Within two generations, historians saw the creation of a professional association - the Canadian Historical Association - and rise of an academic journal - the Canadian Historical Review. Professionalization was also gendered. In an effort to raise the status of the profession and protect the academic labour market for men, male historians made a concerted effort to exclude women from the academy.
History's professionalization is best understood as a transition from one way of organizing intellectual life to another. What came before professionalization was not necessarily inferior, but rather, a different perspective of history. As well, Wright argues convincingly that professionalization inadvertently led to a popular inverse: the amateur historian, whose work is often more widely received and appreciated by the general public.
- World Rights
- Page Count: 280 pages
- Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.1in x 9.3in
Author InformationDonald Wright is a professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of New Brunswick
Table of contents
1 History as avocation
2 From avocation to vocation: the beginnings
3 'The post-1918 generation': professionalization continued
4 'Mr. Newman, manifestly, is not a historian': the amateurization of history
5 The importance of being sexist: the masculinization of history
6 Protecting scholarly independence: a professional imperative
7 'History cannot be too much professionalized':professionalization reconsidered
PrizesSir John A. MacDonald Prize - Canadian Historical Association - Runner-up in 2005
Subjects and Courses