Ph.D. Candidate/Teaching Fellow
Canada (State and Civil Society, Atlantic region); Religion in North American Society (Roman Catholicism); the Modern Vatican
Phone: 613-533-6000, ext: 74351
Office: Watson Hall 107
Master of Arts (History), University of New Brunswick, 2005
Master of Arts (Political Science), Memorial University of Newfoundland, 2003
Bachelor of Arts, Honours (History and Political Studies), Queen's University, 2001
Robert Dennis is an intellectual and religious historian, whose dissertation research examines how transatlantic developments in Catholic social thought influenced the formation of social Catholicism in English Canada during the Depression and Second World War years. He is particularly interested in how Catholic intellectuals across the country engaged normative assumptions in classic liberalism and social democracy, reframing them, often with great radicalism, within frameworks of neo-Thomist/personalist and distributist philosophies. This project aims to situate the experience of the Canadian Church within the broader context European Catholicism and international Catholic social thought as the Church restructures in the decades before the Second Vatican Council.
Hist 121, "Intellectual Origins of the Contemporary West"
Hist 279, "20th Century Canada"
Hist 312, "Canadian Social History, 1760–1939"
Hist 437, "Religion in North American Society, 1800–1960"
Theo 545, "The Church in Canada"
Theo 742, "Reformation and Revival"
W.J. Barnes Teaching Excellence Award, Arts and Science Undergraduate Society, Queen's University, 2010.
Frank Knox Award [Honourable Mention], Alma Mater Society, Queen's University, 2010.
Departmental Award for Teaching Excellence, Department of History, Queen's University, 2009.
President, Canadian Catholic Historical Association, 2014–2016
Vice-President, Canadian Catholic Historical Association, 2012–2014
Secretary, Canadian Catholic Historical Association, 2010–2012
Graduate Student Liaison, Council, Canadian Historical Association, 2004–2006
Co-Chair, Graduate Committee, Canadian Historical Association, 2003–2005
Collaborator, SSHRC Partnership Development Grant application, "Irish‐Catholic Discourse and Social Mobility in Nineteenth Century Halifax: the Exemplary Case of Holy Cross Cemetery," $255,000, 2012–2014.
Ontario Graduate Award, $15,000, 2009–2010.
SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship, $40,000, 2007–2009.
Dennis, Robert H. "Beginning to Restructure the Institutional Church: Canadian Social Catholics and the CCF, 1931-1944," Historical Studies, 74 (2008): 51-71.
Dennis, Robert H. "Forever Proud? From Public to Private Space: the Montreal Canadiens Transition from the Forum to the Molson Centre," in Andrew Holman (ed), Canada's Game? Critical Perspectives on Hockey and Identity (Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2009).
Dennis, Robert H. and Gregory S. Kealey et al., "Knowledge Movement in Response to Coastal BC Oil and Gas Development: Past, Present and Future," in John Lutz and Barbara Neis (eds), Making and Moving Knowledge: Interdisciplinary and Community-based Research in a World on the Edge (Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2008).
-----. "Social-Ecological Health and the History of Non-Renewable Resources on the East and West Coasts," in Rosemary Ommer (ed), Coasts Under Stress: Restructuring and Social-Ecological Health in Coastal Communities (Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2008).
Donald Harmon Akenson with Robert H. Dennis, "The Douglas Chair in Canadian and Colonial History: Past, Present, and Future," 2010.
Franca Iacovetta, Molly Ladd-Taylor with Robert H. Dennis et al., Becoming a Historian: A Canadian Manuel (Ottawa: Canadian Historical Association, 2008 [second edition]).
Available online, http://www.cha-shc.ca/becoming%20a%20historian/index.shtml.
Dennis, Robert H. "Findings of the Access to Government Information Task Force," Canadian Historical Association Bulletin, vol. 32, no. 1 (2006): 21.
-----. "Report from the Grad Rep on the CHA," Canadian Historical Association Bulletin vol. 31, no. 1 (2005): 33-34.
-----. "New Grad Student Liaison with CHA," Canadian Historical Association Bulletin vol. 30, no. 3 (2004): 13.
Dennis, Robert H. "Social Catholicism as Canadian Leftism: Lived Religion and Living Otherwise in Toronto during the Depression," McGill Institute for the Study of Canada series on "The Left in Canada," 8 October 2008.
Dennis, Robert H. "'Sending Light over the Continent: the Rural and Industrial Conferences of the Antigonish Movement, 1930–1939" paper presented at the Canadian Catholic Historical Annual Meeting, Victoria, BC, 2013.
-----. "The Douglas Chair in Canadian and Colonial History: Philanthropy, Secularization, and Restructuring Queen's University in the Early Twentieth Century," paper presented at the Canadian Society of Church History Annual Meeting, Fredericton, NB, 2011.
-----. Dennis, Robert H. "Faith on the Prairies: Roman Catholic Engagement with the CCF during the 1930s and 1940s," paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association, Fredericton, NB, 2011.
-----. "Going 'Back to the Land' in the 1930s: Lived Religion and Living Otherwise in Toronto," paper presented at the American Society of Church History Spring Meeting, Montreal, PQ, 2009.
-----. "Depression-Era Roman Catholicism in Toronto: the Case of Catherine de Hueck and Friendship House," paper presented at the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States Biennial Conference, Toronto, ON, 2007.
-----. "Canadian Social Catholics Begin to Restructure the Institutional Church: Reassessing the Relationship between the Roman Catholic Church and the CCF, 1931-1944" paper presented at the American Society of Church History, Salt Lake City, UT, 2007.
-----. "Amidst Offshore Oil and Gas Development and Disaster: Addressing Jurisdictional and Regulatory Issues on the East and West Coasts of Canada, 1979-1994," Annual Meeting of Canadian Historical Association, London, ON, 2005.
-----. "Forever Proud? From Public to Private Space: the Invention of Tradition during the Montreal Canadiens Transition from the Forum to the Molson Centre," Canada's Game? Critical Perspectives on Hockey & Identity Conference, Plymouth, MA, 2005.
-----. "Lessons from the Meech Lake Accord: Executive Federalism and the Future of Canada's Constitutional Debate," paper presented at "Constitutionalism and Cultural Pluralism: Lessons from Canada Conference," University of Edinburgh, 2004.
-----. "Bi-Coastal Lessons: Offshore Oil and Gas Development in British Columbia and Newfoundland & Labrador," paper presented at the Association for Canadian Studies in United States Biennial Conference, Portland, OR, 2003.
-----. "Remembering Early Connections: the Politics of Public Memory in Saint John, New Brunswick's Tercentennial Celebrations, June 1904" paper presented at "Northern Coasts and Islands: Early Connections" Conference, University of Edinburgh, 2003.