Welcome to the Forest History Cluster

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Call for participation: a new online forum for forest history research!

What might the future of Canadian forest history hold?

Given its importance to Canada, the forest warrants concerted investigation across disciplines, and the Forest History cluster, with your help, seeks to facilitate understanding of the place of the forest in Canada’s (environmental) history.

This cluster will consist of an interactive online bibliography of Canadian forest history, and a “blog” to facilitate ongoing discussion of research issues in forest history. It is managed by Graeme Wynn and Emily Jane Davis of the Geography Department, University of British Columbia in Vancouver, B.C. Your participation on this blog is warmly welcomed at all times, as are your comments, suggestions, references, etc.

To encourage discussion, we are starting an open discussion thread with a challenge identified by the American environmental historian Richard White. In The Organic Machine, he writes that, “I will measure this book’s success by the extent to which it surprises its reader’s and forces them to think in new ways not merely about the Columbia [River] but about nature and its relation to human beings and human history.”

So: How might future work on Canadian forests force readers to think in new ways about the forest, about nature and its relation to human beings, and about human history? What are possible future directions for and areas of research in forest history? What might be the most salient, in your opinion, and why?

Please give this some thought and share your observations with us by posting them in response on this blog.

Feature image: Columbia River Gorge, Washington, USA. Photo by Elena Kuchko on Unsplash.

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