History - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Theosophical socialists in the 1920s Okanagan: Jack Logie's Social Issues Summer Camps

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The religion of Theosophy was a significant influence in Canada's early socialist movement. Although the influence of Theosophy has been examined in the socialist movements of the United States and the United Kingdom, the work that has been done in Canada has been limited to 1890s and 1920s Ontario. The socialist 'heartland' of Canada in the early twentieth century was British Columbia and the influence of Theosophy there was profound. Theosophy cannot be conflated with the Christian social gospel, whose influence is well documented. By examining a series of political retreats co-sponsored by the Federated Labor Party and the Theosophical Society and organized by Jack Logie in Summerland, B.C. in the 1920s, these connections are brought into sharp relief.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

Print and protest: A study of the women's suffrage movement in nineteenth-century English periodical literature

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The journey toward equal citizenship for women in England during the nineteenth century was a complex one, characterized by many failures and some successes. This journey can be traced through the writing of women in periodical literature during the nineteenth century, with particular attention to periodical literature between 1850 and 1900, where debates over women's suffrage contributed to broader arguments about women's rights as citizens and the power that denied them those rights. Suffragist discourse in periodical literature was a conscious strategy used to negotiate increased political rights and influence middle-class opinion, but also one that failed to lead to obvious results. Nevertheless, the cumulative effect of suffragist debates found in the periodical contributed to a growing awareness of the arguments for women's rights among the English middle classes, making the periodical a unique testament to the power of protest through print.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

The Chinese-Canadian news presses' coverage of Canada's recognition of the People's Republic of China and its effects on the Vancouver Chinese community, 1968-1972

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This research project examines the diverse and competing responses of Vancouver's Chinese community to Canada's diplomatic recognition of the People's Republic of China in 1970. It investigates the reasons and underlying forces that shaped the position of the proponents and opponents of recognition. Additionally, this project considers how the recognition debate or controversy relates to the historical development of overseas Chinese organizations and nationalism. Vancouver-based Chinatown News and Chinese Times, which represented the opposing stances in the debate, provide the source materials. They are also the subjects because they shaped the local Chinese community's political and cultural discourse. Few studies on recognition include the wider perspective of the Chinese immigrants and their descendents. This project shows that the Canadian-born Chinese turned their stance on recognition into an open challenge against the postwar hegemony of the traditional ethnic associations and the overseas Chinese identity that they perpetuated. This transformation was conflict-ridden.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

""Thames Valley cotton pickers"": Race and youth in London blues culture

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This study addresses the reception of African American blues music and the ensuing production of English blues in London from 1955 to 1966. It concentrates on London adolescents' unexpected fascination with a musical style that they virtually had no contact with prior to 1955, while analyzing how this immersion in African American culture shaped their cultural identity. Analysis of the influence of African American blues music in London during this period highlights the BBC's weakened influence as a producer of culture for youth, the subsequent increased popularity of American-sponsored radio, and the eventual romanticization of the blues amongst teens. Examination of album covers, radio programs, and liner notes tracks how this mythology developed amongst English youth while asking why the English understanding of the blues persona was infused into the youth culture of London and enacted in a venue that defined new urban space for youth.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Neither this nor that: The hyphenated existence of Chinese children growing up in twentieth century North America

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This project takes its evidence from Chinese North American authors who have written about their own lives or those of members of their immigrant community. Authors such as Denise Chong, Wayson Choy, Ben Fong-Torres, Amy Tan, and Yuen-Fong Woon have written autobiographical fictions, fictionalized biographies, and family histories that delve into Chinese communities in Canada and America. These authors have opened windows into the personal worlds of their communities, and this project attempts to analyze what can be seen. Although racism is discussed in all the literature, it remains peripheral to themes of connections to China, family dynamics, generational conflicts, and formal and informal education. Through their historical novels or fictionalized ethnographies they attempt to understand their families and cultural history, to come to terms with their hyphenated existence, and to assuage their existential angst at being viewed as neither 'this nor that,' neither 'truly' Chinese, nor 'truly' Canadian.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Project (M.A.)

""Shoot the teacher!"": Education and the roots of the Macedonian struggle

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Education brought nationalism from Western Europe to the nineteenth century Balkans, upsetting the theocratic order of the Ottoman Empire. The children of Christian merchants journeyed abroad for better education and many returned imbued with nationalism and a determination to agitate against Ottoman rule. The Ottoman Empire's structure permitted Christians to educate themselves, allowing the educated returnees to inspire future generations. The educated generations made vital contributions to the revolutionary uprisings in Serbia, Greece and Bulgaria, which led to independence. However, no one nation dominated the mixed population of Ottoman Macedonia. Competition from neighbouring states intensified after 1878 with teachers arriving to vie for the loyalty of the population. This "Education Race" produced new generations of patriots for the rival nations. Additionally, a group of Macedonian Slavs emerged who declared "Macedonia for the Macedonians," and initiated an armed uprising in 1903 that marked the onset of the Macedonian Struggle of 1903-1 908.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

A crisis of commitment: socialist internationalism in British Columbia during the Great War

Date created: 
2010
Abstract: 

Historians who have examined the BC socialist and labour movement have generally overlooked the First World War period, assuming that the left uniformly opposed the war. In reality, close attention to archival sources and newspapers has revealed that the war created a crisis of commitment for BC leftists between their commitment to socialist internationalism and thus opposition to the war, and their support for the British Empire and the war it was engaged in. Eventually, the need for socialist internationalism to protect ethnic Canadian socialists led the BC Federation of Labour to elect a new anti-war leadership coalition. This coalition built several new organizations, including the Federated Labour Party and the One Big Union, as well as led the general strikes in Vancouver and Winnipeg in 1918 and 1919. This study is the first to demonstrate the central importance of socialist internationalism to the success of the post-war left.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
M
Department: 
Department of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Organizing the unorganized: the Service, Office, and Retail Workers’ Union of Canada (SORWUC), 1972-1986

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This thesis examines the Service, Office, and Retail Workers’ Union of Canada (SORWUC), an independent, grassroots, socialist feminist union that organized unorganized workers in Canada in the 1970s and 1980s. It looks at SORWUC’s role in Canadian labour history in general, and its efforts to organize unorganized workers in particular, focusing on SORWUC’s efforts to organize workers at a pub and a restaurant in British Columbia. The central thesis of this work is that SORWUC’s socialist feminist unionism and commitment to organizing unorganized workers positioned the union as radically different from much of the 1970s Canadian labour movement, and that this difference both helped and hindered the union in its efforts to organize the unorganized. By examining SORWUC from this neglected perspective, this thesis ultimately aims to demonstrate SORWUC’s importance to the historiography of class and labour organizing in Canada.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Mark Leier
Department: 
Arts and Social Sciences: Department of History
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Scarlet and khaki, fire and steel: representations of warfare in British mass culture, 1870-1914

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

In the late-nineteenth century, Britain saw the development of a mass culture consumed by a new public. It was a culture of diverse forms each seeking commercial success. Part of the success came through a celebration of empire that, after 1870, was rapidly expanding. Embedded in this dynamic cultural context was a similarly new regard for the British army as the Continent destabilized and empire increasingly defined power. Formerly maligned and distrusted, the army enjoyed a prominent place in the commercial culture as it fought incessant imperial wars against exotic opponents whose demise served to entertain while the empire grew. Within this context, this dissertation examines how the discourse on warfare was formulated by the adult and juvenile mass culture defined by the illustrated press, paintings, juvenile novels and toy soldiers between 1870 and 1914. It argues that there was a representational convergence on a set of forms drawn from British military history, the contemporary manifestation of soldiers participating in parades and the volunteer movement, and from the colonial wars regularly fought and reported in the press. These sources of discourse promised accuracy and superficially provided it. However, in revealing the experience of warfare the discourse was false. The culture confirmed a normative vision of war based predominantly on the peculiarities of colonial wars and the displays and war games of weekend volunteers. It was a vision that suited the conservative army officer elite and those who were rendering it for sale, but it was a time when the character of warfare was rapidly changing. Expanding in scale and technological sophistication, modern war was becoming ever more distinct from the controlled and familiar image of it. Even the experience of the Anglo-Boer War failed to fundamentally narrow the gap between reality and representation. By occupying an analytical middle ground, this study is distinct from most cultural and military histories.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
J
Department: 
Dept. of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (Ph.D.)

The gendered working of class in postindustrial, service sector capitalism: the emergence and evolution of the British Columbia Nurses Union, 1976-1992.

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This thesis explores the emergence and initial evolution of the British Columbia Nurses Union from 1976 to 1992. The thesis argues that class and gender framed interrelated processes of organizational change, labour action, and political consciousness for British Columbia’s nurses. These changes took place in the context of a historical struggle between professionalism and trade unionism in nursing, and during a turbulent and transformative era for western capitalism and the role of the capitalist state in the 1970s and 1980s. This thesis argues that class, as a socioeconomic relationship and as lived experience, was the driving force behind organizational, economic, and political change in the nursing occupation. This central assertion stands in sharp contrast to claims that class has ceased to be of socioeconomic or political importance in postindustrial, capitalist society.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
M
Department: 
Dept. of History - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)