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20th Annual McGill-Queen's Graduate Conference in History


Time and Memory: Communicating the Past

The Graduate History Students Association at Queen’s University will host the 20th annual McGill-Queen’s Graduate Conference in History, taking place virtually Friday, April 28th and Saturday, April 29th, 2023.

Click here to register for the 20th McGill–Queen’s Graduate Conference in History.

The 20th McGill-Queen’s Conference welcomes emerging scholars examining how our relationships with time and memory influence our discussions about, dissemination of, and interactions with the past. Historiography and biographies, heritage sites and commemorations, music and oral histories, television shows and theatrical performances have all been used as avenues to discuss the past by both academics and non-academics. These avenues have highlighted an interest in representations of the past and have prompted scholars to ask about the influence of time and memory on how the past is represented. Additionally, emerging discussions on the future of humanities and social science disciplines, professions, and PhDs have prompted serious consideration of what the future of the discipline should look like. Participants are encouraged to engage with questions such as: how do we, as emerging scholars, think of the past? What influences our relationship with and discussions of the past? How do we communicate the past to each other and the general public? How do the ways we communicate the past today help us look towards the future of our disciplines? 

This year’s McGill-Queen’s Conference features panels in both official languages from scholars from across a variety of regions, time periods, and disciplines. The committee aims to create a space for graduate students to contribute to a meaningful, interdisciplinary and interuniversity conversation about the ways we interact with the past, as we look forward to the future.

To this end, our invited speaker this year is Dr. Will Langford, Assistant Professor of History (Dalhousie University) and co-author of the Canadian Historical Association’s recent Report on the Future of the History PhD in Canada. Dr. Langford will deliver a keynote on this topic entitled “PhD Students and the Future (and Present) of the History PhD in Canada,” Friday, April 28th, from 4:30-6:00pm. A graduate student roundtable will be convened the following morning (Saturday, April 29th, 9:00am-10:30am) to continue this important discussion.

For inquiries, please contact



All times in Eastern Daylight Time zone (UTC–04:00)


Friday, April 28th

Panel 1: Collective Memory (9:00am-10:30am)

Chair: Dr. Elizabeth Errington, Queen’s University

Cat Woloshuk, University of Saskatchewan

  • Creating Masculinity, Creating a Nation: The Canadian Lumberjacks of British and Canadian Pulp Fiction, 1883 – 1912

Lilian Estanfanous, Queen’s University

  • Collective Memory and Historical Narrative of Copts as a Religious Minority Diaspora

Amelia Rosch, Queen’s University

  • Mary II, A Second Elizabeth? Historic Narratives of Queenship in Post-1688 England

Karen Lilja Loftsdóttir, Queen’s University

  • War and Memory: A Social History of the Canadian Occupation of Iceland in the Second World War


Panel 2A: Living History (10:30am-12:00pm)

Chair: Kat MacDonald, Queen’s University

Katie Crane, Memorial University of Newfoundland

  • Memories in the Landscape - The Cupids Trails

El Tennant, Queen’s University

  • Curated Ruins: The Cultural Forgetting of the WWII Bombing of Pompeii


Panel 2B: Complications of Commemoration (10:30am-12:00pm)

Chair: Jake Breadman, Queen’s University

Bradley Todd Shoebottom, University of New Brunswick

  • “A Cairn and a Cross”: War Memorialization in France During the Great War by the Canadian Corps

Johnathon Jackson, University of Waterloo

  • Remembering and Forgetting Through Commemoration

Josh Weisenberg-Vincent, Queen’s University

  • How do we Remember British Emancipation? Academic and Popular Interpretations of the End of Slavery


Panel 3: Political Mythmaking (1:00pm-2:30pm)

Chair: Amelia Rosch, Queen’s University

Bailee Dobson, Queen’s University

  • The Legacy of the Soviet Union: How the Myth of the USSR Led to the Russian-Ukrainian War

Ana Paula Bertho, University of Victoria

  • Unfortunate memories: commemorating the military dictatorship in the Brazilian democracy

Claire Parsons, Queen’s University

  • Tête a Tet: An Analysis of the US’ Devastating Coverage of the Vietnam War in 1968 and its Effects on Public Opinion


Panel 4: The Creation of Historical Knowledge and Memory (2:30pm-4:00pm)

Chair: Eben Prevec, Queen’s University

Gabriel Pessoa, Queen’s University

  • The representation of Brazilian nature in Gandavo's História da Província de Sancta Cruz

Sandip Munshi, Queen’s University

  • The Memory of the Forest: How the Historical Narrative about Sundarbans was Constructed

Briar Bennett-Flammer, McGill University

  • Lucian of Samosata the Indiscriminately Satirical: A Contextualized Analysis of Lucian’s Portrayals of Second Century Christians

Michaela Cardo, Queen’s University

  • Embodied Memory: The Role of Mourning Jewelry in Victorian Britain


Keynote Lecture (4:30pm-6:00pm)

PhD Students and the Future (and Present) of the History PhD in Canada

Dr. Will Langford, Dalhousie University



Saturday, April 29th

Graduate Student Roundtable Discussion (9:00am-10:30am)

Future of the History PhD in Canada


Panel 5A: La formation des identités politiques (10:30am-12:00pm)

Chair: Dr. Eric Fillion, Queen’s University

Alexandra Allain, Queen’s University

  • La naissance d’une patrie

Marianne Arseneau, Université d’Ottawa

  • Tourisme mémoriel et action politique : le cas des congrès mondiaux acadiens


Panel 5B: Storytellers (10:30am-12:00pm)

Chair: Megan Griffiths, Queen’s University

Marvin Luther, University of Calgary

  • War and Memory: Soldier Harold Luther’s Second World War Letters – A Case Study

Kristen Jeanveau, Western University

  • Dreams a lot of the water: Narratives of the Llandovery Castle Sinking

Mabel Gardner, Western University

  • “Dearest Mother”: The Intersectional Dynamics of Journalist Gladys Arnold’s Personal Correspondence, 1935-1940


Panel 6: Space and Place in Historical Narratives (1:00pm-2:30pm)

Chair: Carli LaPierre, Queen’s University

Kari Valmestad, Carleton University

  • More Harm Than Good?: Examining the Gentrifying Effects of Heritage in Tiohtià:ke/Montréal and Treaty 1 Territory/Winnipeg

Zachary Sykes, Queen’s University

  • Frontier Spaces: Identity Along the Frontier in Digenis Akritas


Panel 7: Historical Narratives in Popular Culture and Media (2:30pm-4:00pm)

Chair: Chris Greencorn, Queen’s University

Alexandra Ramsay, University of Calgary

  • The Divided Island: Prince Edward Island and the Conscription Crisis of 1917

Rachel Hamilton, Queen’s University

  • “The Queen’s Last Lunatic Lover”: Mental Illness in Popular Representations and Memories of Queen Victoria’s Stalkers, 1837-1841

Eric Chan, University of Calgary

  • Muting Dissonance: Tracing the Development of the Lion Rock Spirit narrative via Newspaper Articles

Michael Pass, University of Ottawa

  • The “Cult” of Anne? Explaining Japan’s Fascination with Anne of Green Gables


Program Committee:

  • Kat MacDonald, co-chair
  • Megan Griffiths, co-chair
  • Amelia Rosch
  • Carli LaPierre
  • Chris Greencorn

Department of History, Queen's University

49 Bader Lane, Watson Hall 212
Kingston ON K7L 3N6




Queen's University is situated on traditional Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe territory.