Book List

Coming in September, from McGill-Queen’s: the second edition of Tom
Flanagan’s First Nations? Second Thoughts. We’re promised a review of
developments in aboriginal policy-making in the past ten years.

And in October, also from McGill-Queen’s, William D. Gairdner, The Book of
Absolutes, A Critique of Relativism and a Defence of Universals.
“Strikingly original and important,” according to Tom Flanagan.

I’ve purchased and am reading with enjoyment, Lee Ward, The Politics of
Liberty in England and Revolutionary America, Cambridge University Press,
2004. (I did not buy it from the publisher; Amazon.com came through.) Pity
there’s nothing in it about Canada. Why not England, Revolutionary America,
and Canada? But as I’ve said, Canada seldom figures on the world map of
political ideas.

I’m about to sign a book contract with McGill-Queen’s and the Carleton
Library to prepare a new edition of G.P. Browne, Documents on the
Confederation of British North America. It appeared originally in 1969 and
has been long out of print. Browne took Sir Joseph Pope’s Confederation
Documents, a record of “the rush to Confederation” between 1858 and 1867,
edited it lightly, and added an invaluable selection of reports, letters,
records of informal meetings, and Colonial Office memoranda. I’ve had it in
mind for years to bring out a new edition. Now that I’m into the project, I
can see that there are decisions before me.

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2 Responses to “Book List”


  1. 1 Lorna Marsden July 17, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    Book news about your new edition.

    I assume you know about Sir John A’s 1885 bill on women’s suffrage? have I missed something here?

  2. 2 janetajzenstat July 22, 2008 at 5:21 pm

    Tell me about Macdonald’s bill.

    On women’s suffrage. There’s no reason why we shouldn’t slang the men who disappoint us. And praise the ones who don’t. But shouldn’t we be careful about criticizing the tradition of liberal democracy in a way to suggest that it is inherently biased toward males?

    One wants to keep in mind that at some future point, not too long I hope, there will be as many women in Parliament as men. Or more. And on that day we don’t want the men complaining that women legislate only to favour women.

    We want those future women to be able to exercise all Parliament’s legitimate powers.

    Think of Justice Bertha Wilson’s contention that Canada needed more women on the Supreme Court because women understand justice in a womanly fashion not open to men. There’s male justice and female justice. That was her argument. When there’s a majority of women on the Court, we’ll hope the men don’t bring it up.


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