June 2020

Now & Then highlights UBC History news/events for students, faculty, staff & alumni

Faculty News

Collected news and opinions on COVID-19 from UBC historians

Historical perspectives are proving to be of crucial importance during the COVID-19 pandemic, and UBC's historians have been busy lending their knowledge to a wide variety of news publications. You can find all of these articles in one place here.

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Other news and items of interest

Wait, There’s More: Protests erupt in Hong Kong over China's new security bill- with Leo Shin

Will a new law mean the end of Hong Kong as we know it? On this podcast, UBC History's Leo Shin discusses a controversial new security law and what it means for China and for the international community.

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Brookings TechStream: Should there be a public health exemption for Section 230?

This article by Dr Heidi Tworek looks at the Food and Drug laws from the twentieth century to  study how we could potentially control the spread of dangerous COVID-19 misinformation online today. 

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CBC: The dirt on handwashing: the tragic death behind a life-saving act

Peter Ward, author of The Clean Body, talked to the CBC about Ignaz Semmelweis, an early pioneer of handwashing. Why did his contemporaries initially resist the introduction of handwashing, and what can this tell us about the way new ideas are recieved today?

Writ Large: A Skeptic’s Guide to Democracy

Heidi Tworek appears on the podcast Writ Large to discuss American writer and reporter Walter Lippmann, and the role of the press in a democracy.

Navigating PARES Workshop

Recently, UBC's Kristie Flannery and Dr Scott Cave ran an informative workshop on navigating PARES, the Spanish government's archives portal. The workshop has wrapped, but the full video is available on YouTube.

University Affairs: Getting your book read when you’re a humanities scholar

Dr Heidi Tworek writes of her experience publishing and promoting her 2019 book, News from Germany. Tworek shares her tips on the best ways to self-promote your scholarly work.

Museum of Vancouver: A Seat at the Table

This exhibit from the Museum of Vancouver features a talk from Henry Yu. Yu discusses the experiences of Chinese immigrants to Canada and their struggles with discrimination, combining his own family history with that of Canada's.

Alumni Spotlight

Congratulations to Gabriela Aceves!

UBC History PhD alumni Gabriela Aceves has won the Canadian Association for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CALACS) Book Prize 2020!

Her book, Women Made Visible: Feminist Art and Media in Post-1968 Mexico City (Lincoln & London: University of Nebraska Press, 2019), focuses on an important group of women who radically pushed the boundaries of artistic, political and urban space in Mexico in the 1970s.

You can read about her award here, and find out more about Aceves’s work here.


Student Focus

UBC Senate approves new Middle East Studies minor 

“I want this to not just be a program that focuses narrowly on what people perceive to be the Middle East... but to look at the Middle East in a global perspective,” says Dr Pheroze Unwalla.

UBC will be offering a new Middle East Studies minor for the first time in the 2020/21 academic year- the first Middle East minor at any institution in BC.

Fall Courses

HIST 432: International Relations in the Twentieth Century

Instructors: Lara Silver and Jessica Wang

History of international relations from the beginning of the twentieth century to the present. Questions of war, peace, balance of power, and the evolution of the international system in global economic, cultural, and social contexts.

HIST 357: History of Mexico

Instructor: William French

Examines themes in the last five hundred years of Mexican history, with an emphasis on the critical reading of primary sources and the use of a variety of texts that may include letters, diaries, paintings, photographs, novels, and movies.

HIST 376: Modern Japanese History Since 1800

Instructor: Kelly McCormick

The building of a modern state, its crisis in the 1930s, and its postwar recovery; topics include business institutions, politics, imperialism, intellectual syncretism, social change, and Japan's growing influence in the world.

HIST 100: What is History?

Instructor: William French

The discipline of history through the study of questions, sources, methods, and controversies. Includes case studies of key turning points in world history to examine what historians do and why it matters.