Brandon University to host two simultaneous history conferences this week

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History at Brandon University will be twice as nice this week, as two separate academic conferences come together for a joint gathering.

The conference conjunction includes the annual Northern Great Plains History Conference as well as the bi-annual Western Canadian Studies Conference. They will share sessions, roundtables and a keynote, as well as a public display of the acclaimed Brandon labour history exhibition, featuring two brand new panels on Black railway porters and the Brandon Friendship Centre.

“It is a real coup to bring these two conferences together in Brandon, and we are presenting a joint conference theme of ‘Intersections and Crossings’,” said BU History professor James Naylor. “Brandon University historians have long been involved in both conferences and this represents a unique meeting of historians from both sides of the border and a recognition of the way we share a common region.”

The conferences will explore a wide range of historical perspectives, with a focus on prairie history, although not exclusively. There are also several panels on military history, women’s history, and activist history.

“History is more than names and dates, history is the lived experience of people who share a place and a time,” said Rhonda Hinther, an associate professor of history at BU. “We are taking care to be as inclusive as possible with these conferences, both in the stories we share, and who is sharing them.”

This includes specific sessions that are designed for undergraduate students to deliver their research, plus open-to-the-public displays.

The keynote speaker will be Sarah Carter, from the University of Alberta. She’ll deliver a keynote on “Settler colonial suffragists and the Prairie Campaign,” looking at how the women’s suffrage movement in the prairie provinces coincided with intense colonization, when the Indigenous population was outnumbered and displaced.

For more information, each conference has a website, at and


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