History is not just about dusty old scrolls, manuscripts and things of the past – it has real relevancy in today’s world. Just watch the video prepared by York’s Department of History in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, which aired recently at a conference in the United States.
What makes York’s Department of History so relevant? “We’re always looking to serve the community and I think that’s one of the hallmarks of our department, the fact that we are socially responsive to changing trends and the changing population of this city,” Jonathan Edmondson (left), chair of York’s Department of History, tells viewers.
The video, one of 14 created for history departments across the US and Canada, was televised on the online Historians TV channel and on hotel room and hallway plasma screens during the 124th annual meeting of the American Historical Association in San Diego. The York video highlights the diversity of research and subject areas students have access to in the Department of History. With the Archives of Ontario and the Tubman Institute for Research on the Global Migrations of African Peoples on the Keele campus, York is ideally situated for historical research.
“We’ve created an environment where some quite unusual topics can be studied,” history Professor Craig Heron (left), past president of the Canadian Historical Association, tells viewers. “There is a range of some really interesting work done by some really creative graduate students.”
The video also looks at the department’s commitment to public history and outreach and how that has led to creative graduate initiatives. Two of the initiatives are the ActiveHistory.ca Web site, which distributes previously published material to a broader audience, aiming at policy-makers, the general public and educators, and Left History: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Historical Inquiry and Debate, the peer-reviewed journal, featuring leftist and Marxist perspectives on a variety of historical topics.
York’s History Department is one of the largest in Canada with a reputation for diversity in the range of courses it offers. To watch the video, click here.