History in the unmaking

History is written by the victors, goes the common saying about the subject. There is truth in this, and revisions are always warranted, where appropriate. We are seeing a good deal of it today, and much of it laudable.

In light of recent discussion of the darker aspects of Canadian history, I’m sharing some pieces from the past few weeks.

The Dorchester review re-posted articles from their archives on the topic of Residential schools by Ken Coates, and by Michael Bonner on the complicated history of Graeco-Roman antiquity and its influences from the Near East.

In light of the cancelling of Ryerson, Patrice Dutil and Ronald Stagg try to set the historical record straight.

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

This piece by Fr. Raymond de Souza in the National Post recounts the fraught history of Indigenous-Church relations in more nuanced fashion than we’ve seen in recent times.

In light of so much historical simplification and a healthy dose of misunderstanding, let us not forget that New York is named after the Duke of York, himself a slave owner. Ought we then cancel the likes of the New Yorker and the New York Times? Somehow, I doubt the editors there would have it. I wonder why.

Perhaps this should give everyone pause, and allow us to see clearly the heavy strain of irrationalism in what passes for journalism and in the academy these days.

At all times, there are barbarians at the gates of any civilization. Though in our own day, they are not found primarily without, but within – in the universities.

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