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376 The Canadian Historical Review the Federated Women's Institutes of Ontario. This enjoyable book contributes greatly to our understanding of the important work of the Women's Institutes in Canada. LINDA CULLUM St john's 'Other' Voices: Historical Essays on Saskatchewan Women. Edited by DAVID DEBROU and AILEEN MOFFATT. Regina: Canadian Plains Research Centre, University of Regina 1995. Pp. 166, illus. $16.00 One of the defining characteristics of Canadian women's history is its attention to the specificity of place. 'Other' Voices: Historical Essays on Saskatchewan Women's History is the Saskatchewan contribution to a genre of provincial or regional women's history that now needs only a volume or two on Canada's northern regions to complete the set. For editors Dave DeBrou and Aileen Moffatt, producing such a collection demanded diversifying the cast of historical characters associated with Saskatchewan women's history. The result is a useful collection of essays presenting some evocative new historical scholarship. To achieve their goal of 'multi-vocality,' many of the essays explore the interplay of gender and ethnicity. Articles by Lesley Erickson, Mathilde Jutras, and Anna Felman consider the Swedish, francophone, and Jewish women, respectively, who emigrated to Saskatchewan in the decades of agricultural settlement, 1880 to 1940. Jo-Anne Lee provides a welcome contribution on late,twentieth-century Asian migration in her analysis of three oral narratives of female immigrants from the Philippines and Sri Lanka. In one of the strongest contributions, Miriam McNab surveys the ways women from the-northern Pinehouse Lake Aboriginal community have responded to the dramatic changes wrought by European colonization and the 'intrusion of southern cultural influences' (131). Pointing to the differential pace of change experienced by the province's southern and northern First Nations people, McNab argues that Pinehouse Lake women felt the impact of 'village sedentization' more keenly than their male counterparts. As a result, northern Native women are now seeking out the opportunities that cities offer, confident they can adapt to urban culture without losing either their traditional land or language. Diversity is also documented through attention to class. Julie Dorsch's study of farm women in the post-1945 era reminds us of the many changes that have affected farm women in the second half of this century. Theresa Healey's fine essay explores Saskatoon women's mobilization to defend and improve relief programs during the early Book Reviews 377 years of the Depression and addresses the themes of urban workingclass women's political action. Nadine Small reinterprets the work of Saskatchewan's Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire (IODE) during the First World War by emphasizing how class and ethnic privilege defined those women's patriotic and community activities. A central theme uniting many of these essays is that of exclusion: the authors hope to write these 'other' voices into a historical narrative that has ignored them to date. This analytic goal is articulated explicitly in Aileen Moffatt's very useful historiographical essay, 'Great Women, Separate Spheres, and Diversity.' Moffatt provides a comprehensive overview ofthe historical scholarship ·in Saskatchewan women's history, beginning with the limited references made to women in early provincial histories, through to suggestions for future areas of possible and productive research. In between, Moffatt ar~es, have been three stages of scholarship: compensatory or celebratory history (which focused on elite and notable women), followed by 'women's culture/separate spheres' (which emphasized the unique and common experiences of women), and,, in recent years, diversity (of experiences and identity). This model is convenient, though one wonders whether the stages overlap so much as to be almost meaningless. Perhaps the concept of paradigms would be more accurate. A similar problem plagues the editorial introduction. DeBrou and Moffatt offer an oddly repetitive model of three stages of Canadian women's history, in which only diversity produces analytic complexity. In addition to incorrectly characterizing earlier approaches to women's history as mono-causal (a substantial corpus of socialist-feminist scholarship was devoted to analysing the 'dual' and contradictory systems of patriarchy and capitalism), the editors miss opportunities to show precisely when knowledge of diversity creates new kinds of complexities and when it confirms earlier scholarly appraisals. For instance, 'Other...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1710-1093
Print ISSN
0008-3755
Pages
pp. 376-378
Launched on MUSE
2016-04-06
Open Access
No
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