My Teaching This Week

23 10 2009

In my first-year Canadian history survey course, I gave two lectures this week. The first lecture was on the Atlantic Colonies before 1850. The second lecture was on the history of Upper Canada between the War of 1812 and the 1850s. In my honours seminar on Confederation, we discussed the government’s increasingly important role in the economy in the Province of Canada in the 1840s and 1850s. The readings we discussed were:  Duncan McArthur, “History of Public Finance, 1849-1867” in Canada and Its Provinces vol 5, page 165-184; Frank Lewis and Ann Carlos, “Creative Financing of an Unprofitable Enterprise: The Grand Trunk Railway of Canada” Explorations in Economic History 31 (1995): 273-301; and my article “Toryism, Classical Liberalism, and Capitalism: The Politics of Taxation and the Struggle for Canadian Confederation”  Canadian Historical Review 89:1 (2008): 1-25. We also listened to student presentations on the lives of Egerton Ryerson and Sir Francis Hincks. Our excellent discussion of 19th century corporate welfare dovetailed nicely with our conversation in the previous week about the rise of classical liberalism in British North America. I also spoke to the students about the book review assignment, which concerns Jeff McNairn’s The Capacity to Judge: Public Opinion and Deliberative Democracy in Upper Canada, 1791-1854 (Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 2000).



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