On the Frontier: Letters from the Canadian West in the 1880s
University of Regina Press / 23 March 2016

On the Frontier: Letters from the Canadian West in the 1880s by William Wallace edited by Ken S. Coates and Bill Morrison Published by University of Regina Press Review by Keith Foster $29.95 ISBN 978-0-88977-408-7 Have you ever wanted to be a fly on the wall, listening in to the conversations of others? On the Frontier: Letters from the Canadian West in the 1880s is the next-best thing. It chronicles the lives of bachelor brothers William and Andrew Wallace, and their widowed father, Peter, as they immigrate to Canada from England and settle in what is now western Manitoba. Using his keen powers of observation, William corresponds with his sister, Maggie, back in Scotland. He signs his letters as Willie. His brother, Andrew, occasionally adds a postscript. Maggie’s letters, unfortunately, have been lost. What a shame. It’s like listening to a one-sided conversation. According to editors Ken S. Coates and Bill Morrison, William wrote in a stream of consciousness, without concern for punctuation. As editors, Coates and Morrison added the appropriate punctuation to make for easier reading, but kept the wording intact. One theme thoroughly permeating William`s letters are the hardships pioneers faced. Spring flooding would wash away bridges. But…

University of Regina Press / 4 September 2015

#IdleNoMore: And the Remaking of Canada by Ken Coates Published by University of Regina Press Review by: Justin Dittrick $27.95 ISBN: 9780889773424 In #IdleNoMore: And the Remaking of Canada, Ken Coates examines the Idle No More movement from its understated beginnings in November 2012 to its climax in the late winter of 2013. While Idle No More can be compared to other social movements, such as Occupy Wall Street and the Arab Spring, it differs from them in several important ways. It is these differences that make the movement truly remarkable, including its lack of an official spokesperson, its lack of affiliation with political leaders, mainstream ideologies, and party elites, and its lack of an organizational structure beyond organizers’ commitment to its grassroots origins and inspiration. Indeed a convincing argument can be made that Idle No More contributes a set of best practices for peaceful, exuberant, and community-driven protest. With its energy, direction, and focus coming almost entirely from the public, it is greater than the sum of its actions and events, having galvanized discussion and instilled pride in a new generation of Indigenous Canadians on a wide assortment of issues and challenges to be faced in the coming years….