Call for Papers

Canada 150: Defining the Nation in a Transnational World
The 13th Annual Graduate History Symposium
May 11-12, 2017, University of Toronto

What is a nation? What is national identity? Is the concept of the nation-state still a relevant analytical tool in an increasingly global world? Where do milestone events in a single nation’s history, such as the Confederation of Canada in 1867, fit into our approaches to the study of history? Why have such events acquired the status of national myth? Which individuals and stories have been marginalized in the writing of national histories?

Please join us for the thirteenth Annual Graduate History Symposium to be held on May 11-12, 2017 in the Department of History at the University of Toronto. While the overarching theme will be Canada 150, we welcome participants from all geographic, temporal and thematic backgrounds to submit paper or panel proposals considering the ways in which their research intersects with the concept of nation and/or the following themes:

  • State formation
  • Nations and nationalism
  • Transnational histories
  • Colonialism/postcolonialism
  • Indigenous histories and Indigenous worlds
  • Citizenship and rights
  • Labour, work, and economies
  • Statecraft
  • War and/or Revolution
  • Race and ethnicity
  • Gender and family histories
  • Histories of sexualities and intimacies
  • Ideas in multiculturalism
  • The role of America, Britain, and France in North or South American history
  • Upper and Lower Canadian history
  • Provincial (or state) and federal political tensions
  • National indifference
  • Federalism
  • Immigration/migration
  • Religions, spiritualities, and beliefs
  • The Atlantic World
  • Memory/commemoration
  • Constitution building
  • Confederation
  • Nation building
  • National myths
  • Governmentality and subject formation
  • Welfare state histories
  • Geographies and environments
  • Technology, science, medicine, health
  • Any other relevant theme

The conference will feature a keynote presentation by a leading historian of Canada, as well as a scholars’ roundtable to address the theme of Confederation and national myth making. We are also excited to renew our partnership with Past Tense Graduate Review of History to offer an essay competition for conference participants. The recipient of this award for the best conference paper will be published in an upcoming issue of Past Tense. This will be the second year for this competition.

Please submit a 250-word proposal and a short biographical sketch to by Monday February 27th, 2017. Successful submissions will be notified by the end of March 2017. The deadline for paper submissions for the Past Tense essay prize is Monday April 24th, 2017. For more information, please contact