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Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University's objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide.

Print Price: $149.99

448 pp.
71 figures, 7" x 9"


Copyright Year:

Imprint: OUP Canada

Home, Work, and Play

Situating Canadian Social History, Third Edition

Edited by James Opp and John C. Walsh

Featuring engaging articles by some of Canada's finest historians, this expertly crafted volume explores a wide range of topics and social issues - including constructions of gender and social status, participation in labour, access to education and health care, and more. Well-rounded and up-to-date, this new edition provides balanced coverage of pre- and post-Confederation Canada to help students understand how Canadians have interpreted and experienced home, work, and play across time.

Readership : Second-, third-, and fourth-year students taking Canadian social history courses.


  • "The choice of home, work, and play as organizational themes works very well, and students are easily engaged with these topics. . . . The inclusion of visual primary sources is an excellent addition to the text."
    --Carmen J. Nielson, Mount Royal University

  • "This is a great collection. . . . The editors have done an excellent job of chopping and paring down some of the articles to get to the essential points."
    --Christopher Dummitt, Trent University

Part One: At Home
1. Katherine M.J. McKenna: Women's Agency in Upper Canada: Prescott's Board of Police Record, 1834-1850
2. Marguerite Van Die: Nurture and Education: The Christian Home
3. Paige Raibmon: "Living on Display": Colonial Visions of Aboriginal Domestic Spaces
4. Valerie Minnett and Mary-Anne Poutanen: Swatting Flies for Health: Children and Tuberculosis in Early Twentieth-Century Montreal NEW
5. Stacey Zembrzycki: "There Were Always Men in Our House": Gender and the Childhood Memories of Working-Class Ukrainians in Depression-Era Canada
6. Deborah McPhail: What to Do with the "Tubby Hubby"? "Obesity," the Crisis of Masculinity, and the Nuclear Family in Early Cold War Canada NEW
7. Franca Iacovetta and Valerie J. Korinek: Jell-O Salads, One-Stop Shopping, and Maria the Homemaker: The Gender Politics of Food
8. Patrick Vitale: A Model Suburb for Model Suburbanites: Order, Control, and Expertise in Thorncrest Village NEW
9. Sean Purdy: Framing Regent Park: The National Film Board of Canada and the Construction of "Outcast Spaces" in the Inner City, 1953 and 1994
10. Visualizing Home
Part Two: At Work
11. Carolyn Podruchny: The Theatre of Hegemony: Masters, Clerks, and Servants NEW
12. Daniel Samson: The Spirit of Industry and Improvement: Liberal Government and Rural-Industrial Society, Nova Scotia, 1790-1862 NEW
13. Nicolas Kenny: Encounters with Industrial Space (new)
14. Andrew Parnaby: "The Best Men that Ever Worked the Lumber": Aboriginal Longshoremen on Burrard Inlet, BC, 1863-1939
15. Kate Boyer: "Miss Remington" Goes to Work: Gender, Space, and Technology at the Dawn of the Information Age
16. Merle Massie: Even the Turnips Were Edible NEW
17. Jennifer A. Stephen: The National Selective Service Women's Division and the Management of Women War Workers NEW
18. Donica Belisle: Exploring Post-Wwar Consumption: The Campaign to Unionize Eaton's in Toronto, 1948-1952 NEW
19. Katharine Rollwagen: When Ghosts Hovered: Community and Crisis in the Company Town of Britannia Beach, British Columbia, Canada NEW
20. Becki Ross and Kim Greenwell: Spectacular Striptease: Performing the Sexual and Racial Other in Vancouver, BC, 1945-75
21. Visualizing Work
Part Three: At Play
22. Gillian Poulter: "Brave North Western Voyageurs": Snowshoeing in Montreal NEW
23. R. Blake Brown: "Every Boy Ought to Learn to Shoot and to Obey Orders": Guns, Boys, and the Law in English Canada from the Late Nineteenth Century to the Great War NEW
24. Colin D. Howell: Borderlines, Baselines, and Big Game: Conceptualizing the Northeast as a Sporting Region
25. Sharon Wall: Totem Poles, Teepees, and Token Traditions: "Playing Indian" at Ontario Summer Camps, 1920-1955
26. Russell Field: Constructing the Preferred Spectator: Arena Design and Operation and the Consumption of Hockey in 1930s Toronto NEW
27. Dan Malleck: Try to Control Yourself: The Regulation of Public Drinking in Post-Prohibition Ontario, 1927-1944 NEW
28. Valerie J. Korinek: "We're the Girls of the Pansy Parade": Historicizing Winnipeg's Queer Subcultures, 1930s-1970 NEW
29. Steve Penfold: "Our New Palace of Donut Pleasure": The Donut Shop and Consumer Culture, 1961-1976
30. George Colpitts: Films, Tourists, and Bears in the National Parks: Managing Park Use and the Problematic "Highway Bum" Bear in the 1970s NEW
31. Visualizing Play

Instructor's Manual:
For every part:
Discussion questions
Suggested further readings
Essay questions
For every chapter:
Chapter overview
Discussion questions
Annotated Image Bank:
Photos, images, and figures from the text with annotations
Web Links:
In-text icons direct to additional materials that enhance the readings in the book

James Opp is an associate professor in the department of history at Carleton University. He assisted in the development of the Canadian social history course at Carleton and has written a variety of papers in addition to his work as an editor on Home, Work, and Play.

John C. Walsh is an assistant professor in the department of history at Carleton University. He currently teaches the Canadian social history course and is actively conducting research on community and identity and the cultures of space and time.

Sport in Canada - Don Morrow and Kevin B. Wamsley
A History of Canadian Culture - Jonathan F. Vance
Labouring Canada - Edited by Brian D. Palmer and Joan Sangster
Writing History - William Kelleher Storey and Towser Jones

Special Features

  • Balance of classic and contemporary articles offers students a wide-ranging survey of Canadian social history spanning from 1830 to the present day.
  • Thematic organization groups readings into three sections - home, work, and play - giving an overarching view of these facets of Canadian social history.
  • Strong regional coverage offers students an inclusive understanding of how social history unfolded in different settings across Canada.
  • Visual primary sources - including advertisements, photos, maps, cartoons, architectural floor plans, and more - give students the opportunity to develop their analytical skills as they engage critically with historical documents.
New to this Edition
  • Sixteen new selections expand the scope of this collection to include issues such as suburban planning, encounters with industrial space, women's wartime labour, and the development of queer subcultures.
  • Updated Visualizing sections at the end of each part provide a range of visual aids that represent the themes of home, work, and play.
  • A chronological table of contents - in addition to the main thematic table of contents - allows instructors to easily assign readings in a way that matches their course organization.
  • Additional online resources - including an instructor's manual, web links, and an annotated image bank - support and enhance the classroom experience.
  • In-text icons at the end of every chapter direct students to additional resources on the companion website.
  • Suggested further readings added to the end of each part's introduction give students a starting point for further study and research.