Books

The following publications by CBHA/ACHA members are available:

Russell, Jason, Our Union: UAW/CAW Local 27 From 1950 to 1990, Athabasca University Press.  Paperback US$ 29.95

The post-war period witnessed dramatic changes in the lives of working-class families. Wages rose, working hours were reduced, pension plans and state social security measures offered greater protection against unemployment, illness, and old age, the standard of living improved, and women and members of immigrant communities entered the labour market in growing numbers. Existing studies of the post-war period have focused above all on unions at the national and international levels, on the "post-war settlement," including the impact of Fordism, and on the chiefly economic issues surrounding collective bargaining, while relatively scant attention has been paid to the role of the union local in daily working-class experience.

In Our Union, Jason Russell argues that the union local, as an institution of working-class organization, was a key agent for the Canadian working class as it sought to create a new place for itself in the decades following World War II. Using UAW/CAW Local 27, a broad-based union in London, Ontario, as a case study, he offers a ground-level look at union membership, including some of the social and political agendas that informed union activities. As he writes in the introduction, "This book is as much an outgrowth of years of rank-and-file union activism as it is the result of academic curiosity." Drawing on interviews with former members of UAW/CAW Local 27 as well as on archival sources, Russell offers a narrative that will speak not only to labour historians but to the people about whom they write.

Martin, Joe and Chris Kobrak, From Wall Street to Bay Street: The Origins and Evolution of American and Canadian Finance, University of Toronto Press.  192 pages. Hardcover C$60.00, Paperback C$ 21.98

The 2008 financial crisis rippled across the globe and triggered a worldwide recession. Unlike the American banking system which experienced massive losses, takeovers, and taxpayer funded bailouts, Canada’s banking system withstood the crisis relatively well and maintained its liquidity and profitability. The divergence in the two banking systems can be traced to their distinct institutional and political histories.

From Wall Street to Bay Street is the first book for a lay audience to tackle the similarities and differences between the financial systems of Canada and the United States. Christopher Kobrak and Joe Martin reveal the different paths each system has taken since the early nineteenth-century, despite the fact that they both originate from the British system. The authors trace the roots of each country’s financial systems back to Alexander Hamilton and insightfully argue that while Canada has preserved a Hamiltonian financial tradition, the United States has favoured the populist Jacksonian tradition since the 1830s. The sporadic and inconsistent fashion in which the American system have changed over time is at odds with the evolutionary path taken by the Canadian system. From Wall Street to Bay Street offers a timely and accessible comparison of financial systems that reflects the political and cultural milieus of two of the world’s top ten economies.

Paul Litt, Trudeaumania, UBC Press. 424 pages.  Hardcover C$39.42

In 1968, Canadians dared to take a chance on a new kind of politician. Pierre Trudeau became the leader of the Liberal Party in April and two months later won the federal election. His meteoric rise to power was driven by Trudeaumania, an explosive mix of passion and fear fueled by media hype and nationalist ambition. This book traces what happened when the fabled spirit of the sixties met the excitement of the Centennial and Expo 67. Canadians wanted to modernize their nation, differentiate it from the US, and defuse Quebec separatism. Far from being a sixties crazy moment, Trudeaumania was a passionate quest for a new Canada that would define the values of Canadians for decades to come.

Donic Belisle, Retail Nation: Department Stores and the Making of Modern Canada, UBC Press, 2011.  320 pages.  Hardcover: C$87.00, Paperback: C$34.95

Retail Nation traces Canada's transformation into a modern consumer nation back to an era when Eaton’s, Simpson's, and the Hudson’s Bay Company fostered and came to rule the country’s shopping scene. Between 1890 and 1940, department stores revolutionized selling and shopping by parlaying cheap raw materials, business-friendly government policies, and growing demand for low-priced goods into retail empires that promised to meet citizens' needs and strengthen the nation.

This vivid account of Canadian department stores in their heyday showcases them as powerful agents of nationalism and modernization. But the nation that their catalogues and shopping experience helped to define -- white, consumerist, middle-class -- was more limited than nostalgic portraits of the early department store suggest.

Winner, 2012 Pierre Savard Award, the International Council of Canadian Studies.
Shortlisted, 2012 John W. Dafoe Book Prize, J. W. Dafoe Foundation
Honourable Mention, 2012 Sir John A. Macdonald Prize, Canadian Historical Association

nottalking

Janis Thiessen, Not Talking Union: An Oral History of North American Mennonites and Labour, McGill-Queen's University Press, 2016.  272 pages.  Paperback:  C$30.36

Drawing on over a hundred interviews, Janis Thiessen explores Mennonite responses to labour movements such as Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers, as well as Mennonite involvement in conscientious objection to unions. This innovative study of the Mennonites - a people at once united by an ethnic and religious identity, yet also shaped by differences in geography, immigration histories, denomination, and class position - provides insights into how and why they have resisted involvement in organized labour. Not Talking Union adds a unique perspective to the history of labour, exploring how people negotiate tensions between their commitments to faith and conscience and the demands of their employment.

manmennos

Janis Thiessen, Manufacturing Mennonites: Work and Religion in Post-War Manitoba, University of Toronto Press, 2013.  264 pages.  Softcover: C$23.76. Cloth: C$48.75

Examines the efforts of Mennonite intellectuals and business leaders to redefine the group's ethno-religious identity in response to changing economic and social conditions after 1945. As the industrial workplace was one of the most significant venues in which competing identity claims were contested during this period, Janis Thiessen explores how Mennonite workers responded to such redefinitions and how they affected class relations.

joining

J. Andrew Ross, Joining the Clubs: The Business of the National Hockey League to 1945, Syracuse University Press, 2015.  Cloth.  440 pages.  US$49.95

"The most comprehensive history to date of the NHL’s rise from just another league to the center of control over the development of hockey in Canada and much of the USA. The book is very important because of its depth and breadth."—Stephen Hardy, University of New Hampshire.

relentless

Joe Martin, Relentless Change: A Case Book for the Study of Canadian Business History, University of Toronto Press, 2009.  504 pages.  Softcover: C$41.43.  Hardcover: C$85.00

Casebooks in business history are designed to instruct students in classrooms and boardrooms about the evolution of business management. The first casebook for the study of business history in a Canadian context, Joseph E. Martin's text will help students, both in the classroom and the boardroom, understand the Canadian economy and guide them in making sound decisions and contributing to a healthy, growing economy.

Thirteen original case studies from the mid-nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries deal with different industry sectors as well as individual corporations and managers. Overviews provide context by examining major public policy decisions and key developments in the financial system that have affected business practices. Martin also presents eight original tables that trace the evolution of the 60 largest Canadian corporations between 1905 and 2005. Relentless Change is an invaluable resource for instructors and business students and clearly demonstrates how businesses are affected by the interaction of individual decisions, policy changes, and market trends.

Notables -- Front Cover

Mark S. Bonham, Notables: 101 Global LGBTQ People Who Changed the World, University of Toronto Press, 2015.  Softcover.  212 pages.  C$19.95

Reveals a group of select Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) individuals whose personal accomplishments in their profession changed the world in some relevant way.

Included are founders of various social movements, innovators in sports, leaders in business and politics, explorers and discoverers, instigators in religious movements, thinkers in philosophy, infamous villains, creators of new academic fields of study, and risk takers in the arts, culture, and entertainment worlds.