NEW BEGINNINGS: A SOCIAL HISTORY OF CANADA, VOLUME 2
Daniel Francis and James H. Marsh.
Volume 11 Number 2.
New Beginnings is called a "Social History" because it concentrates, not on the rich and powerful elements of Canadian society, But on such elements as the farmers, the workers, the poor, the women, and the children. It shows how Canada developed using themes such as western settlement and the emergence of industrialism where ordinary people, not just the political and business leaders, played a part.
Volume 1 began to answer such questions as: How did the northern portion of North America become Canada? How was it joined together as one country? What events have made Canada what it is today? This volume continues the search for such answers, beginning with the Canadian scene in 1860 and taking the story to the Winnipeg Strike of 1919.
The book would certainly suit some of the study areas designed for intermediate level history students. It provides a great variety of clear text, picture, diagram, and map. The text is in quite large type; difficult words appear in bold type. These are explained in a glossary at chapters end. (I would have preferred a more immediate margin explanation!) The text also contains numerous inserts which embellish the particular story without breaking the continuity. Almost every page has at least one picture or diagram, most of which are described in brown type, with good detail. Project questions are not confined to chapter ends but may connect with a map picture or insert, thus giving admirable variety.
The authors (about whom we are told nothing) conclude chapters with not only lists of material for further reading, but also, very commendably, lists of visual aids, such as films and filmstrips. Altogether a worthy addition to the Canadian history textbook scene and one from which students of many ages could derive much benefit and enjoyment.
John Harkness, Emery C. I., Weston, ON.
1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995
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