‘History wars’ in the U.S. and Canada provoked by a racial reckoning with the past
History students across Canadian universities want to see a better world. They are passionate and deeply concerned about social injustice and how they might study a more inclusive past. I should know. I’ve got many of them in my classes.
But in order to get there, we need to avoid getting into what some historians call the “history wars.” As political scientist David B. Macdonald writes, these “wars” are “debates over collective memory within a national territory” in settler colonial societies like Canada and the United States. They can devolve into uncontrollable ideological, ethnic and generational divisions.