Welcome to the blog for the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Posts on this site are the opinion of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Federation, its staff or its board of directors. Entries are posted in the language of the author.

Members of the university research community are invited to make guest blog submissions on issues relating to the wellbeing of the humanities and social sciences research and learning enterprise in Canada. Click here to read the Federations’ blog policy. Please send your submission to

One Child Reading: My Auto-Bibliography

Margaret Mackey, Professor, University of Alberta

When I begin explaining my book One Child Reading to people, everybody asks the same question: “How do you remember all those things you read as a child?” It’s a reasonable point to raise. In collecting as many as possible of the books and other materials I encountered as a girl, I have acquired eleven 30-inch shelves of texts from my childhood: picturebooks, series books, and stand-alone novels; school textbooks; magazines for children and adults; cookbooks; knitting patterns; sheet music; Sunday-school leaflets; DVDs of television programs and movies; audio recordings of vinyl records and radio programs;...

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On the Twentieth Anniversary of National Aboriginal Day

Yasmeen Abu-LabanProfessor of Political Science at the University of Alberta, and President of the Canadian Political Science Association

June 21, 2016 marks the twentieth anniversary of National Aboriginal Day.   Canada’s official proclamation of a National Aboriginal Day stemmed from recommendations by Indigenous groups as well as the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples.

For those concerned with equity in educational institutions and practices, National Aboriginal Day also offers educators (along with all Canadians) opportunities for sharing in Indigenous cultures and traditions, as well as teaching and learning.

 For example, when I served as a “non-Aboriginal” parent volunteer for the National Aboriginal Day...

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Sharing the Land, Sharing a Future: Reconciliation

Zahura Ahmed, Congress student blogger

What kind of nation are we? What kind of nation do we want to be in the next 150 years? Cindy Blackstock, Executive Director of the First Nations Child & Family Caring Society of Canada, gave a compelling keynote at the “Sharing the Land, Sharing a Future” forum on Wednesday morning. Blackstock delivered a searing critique of government and academic inaction despite a history of studies, reports, Commissions, and recommendations. Approaching reconciliation through the lens of child welfare, she argued that in order to understand reconciliation, we must understand the Canadian state’s long history of placing itself between First Nations children and their families.

Blackstock stated that we too often perceive ourselves as benevolent, and in doing so we make excuses for our acts of omission as well as our minimal acts of justice. We are aware of the problems that Indigenous communities face, yet we...

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Imagining Canada’s Future/Imaginer l’avenir du Canada

What effects will the quest for energy and natural resources have on our society and our position on the world stage?

Quels effets la quête de ressources naturelles et d’énergie aura-t-elle sur la société canadienne et la place qu’occupe le Canada à l’échelle mondiale?

National forum organized by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada in partnership with the Humanities and Social Sciences Federation of Canada.

Forum national organisé par le Conseil de recherches en sciences humaines du Canada en partenariat avec la Fédération des sciences humaines du Canada

Concluding remarks /Quelques réflexions pour conclure”

Guy Laforest, MSRC
Président-élu, Fédération des sciences humaines du Canada
Professeur au département de science politique de l’Université Laval


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Thank you, volunteers!

Dear volunteers of the Congress for the Social Sciences and Humanities,

On behalf of myself and the entire Federation of the Social Sciences and Humanities I would like to extend a sincere thank you to each and every one of you. It is because of your hard work and dedication that the 85th edition of Canada’s largest interdisciplinary gathering of scholars and researchers was able to run with such ease.

During these past eight days, you have performed a number of essential duties that has supported the University of Calgary’s and the Federation for Social Sciences and Humanities production of Congress. Whether you were a volunteer in accommodation, audio-visual, hospitality, the mobile team, campus guide or a shuttle and event assistant, you played an essential role to the successful outcome of this year’s Congress and in providing a warm Western welcome to nearly 8,000 participants. The time and commitment you have dedicated to...

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