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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Prize Winners announced at Osgoode Society AGM

This evening at the Osgoode Society's annual general meeting, three prizes were awarded.

For the Peter Oliver Prize for the best published writing by a student, we have co-winners.

Edward Cavanagh is a PhD student in history at the University of Ottawa and a former McMurtry Fellow.  Tyler Wentzell graduated in 2014 from the University of Toronto Law School.

The articles for which they were awarded the prize are:

Edward Cavanagh,  ‘Possession and Dispossession in Corporate New France, 1600-1663: Debunking a “Juridical History” and Revisiting Terra Nullius,’ 2014 32 Law and History Review 97

Tyler Wentzell, ‘The Court and the Cataracts:  The Creation of the Queen Victoria Niagara Falls Park and the Ontario Court of Appeal,’ (2014) 106 Ontario History 100

The R. Roy McMurtry Fellowship in Canadian Legal History was awarded to Elizabeth Koester.  

Elizabeth holds an LLB from the University of Toronto and was a partner with McCarthys for some years.  She has returned to academe and is pursuing a doctorate at the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto, where her dissertation will focus on law and eugenics in Ontario, 1900-1939.

Finally, the winner of the John T. Saywell Prize in Constitutional Legal History (awarded in alternate years) is Hakeem O. Yusuf, Reader in Law and Public Policy at the University of Strathclyde Glasgow, for his book Colonial and Post-Colonial Constitutionalism in the Commonwealth:  Peace, Order and Good Government, published by Routledge last year. Dr. Yusuf considers the interpretation of and experience with POGG in Canada, Australia, Nigeria and the UK itself, but the Canadian experience is in many ways the heart of the book.  By putting POGG into a broader imperial context, Dr. Yusuf has brought new insights to a topic that Canadian legal and constitutional historians have studied almost obsessively.  

Congratulations to all four prize winners.

Justice Robert J. Sharpe new president of the Osgoode Society

At this evening's meeting of the board of directors of the Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History, Justice Robert J. Sharpe of the Ontario Court of Appeal was elected president of the Society.

While R. Roy McMurtry, the founder and of the society and its long-serving president, has decided to step down, he will not be going very far, as he will remain on the board as a director. We are fortunate that we will continue to benefit from his wealth of experience and talent.

We are also extremely glad that Bob Sharpe has agreed to succeed him. Not only is Bob a distinguished judge and former dean of the U of T law school, he is also one of the Society's most prolific and successful authors. His books for the society include:

The Lazier Murder: Prince Edward County, 1884 (Toronto: The Osgoode Society and University of Toronto Press, 2011), Winner of the Fred Landon Award of the Ontario Historical Association, 2013.
The Last Day, The Last Hour: The Currie Libel Trial (Toronto: The Osgoode Society and University of Toronto Press, second edition, 2009),
The Persons Case: The Origins and Legacy of the Fight for Legal Personhood (Toronto: The Osgoode Society and University of Toronto Press, 2007), (with Patricia McMahon) Winner of the Canadian Law and Society Association Book Prize, 2007.
Brian Dickson: A Judge's Journey (Toronto: The Osgoode Society and University of Toronto Press, 2003), (with Kent Roach). Winner of the John Wesley Dafoe Book Prize, 2003.

Congratulations and thank you, Bob!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Morin, "Ownership and Indigenous Territories in New France (1603-1760)" on SSRN

Michel Morin of the University of Montreal has posted "Ownership and Indigenous Territories in New France (1603-1760)" on SSRN. The article appears in Jose Vicente Serrao, Barabara Direito, Eugenia Rodriguez and Susana Munch Miranda (eds), Property Rights, Land and Territory in the European Overseas Empires, Lisbon, CEHC-IUL, 2014.

Here's the abstract:

In North-Eastern America, the pre-Columbian origin of Indigenous familial territories has remained controversial among Anthropologists, like the possibility that Algonquian peoples devised wildlife conservation measures by themselves. During the 17th century, however, in accordance with concepts found in the literature on natural law and the law of nations, the French recognized that Indigenous Nations had national territories and controlled access to areas over which they exercised a form of collective ownership; the use of lands was regulated by chiefs. With time, the King’s representatives convinced their allies to call themselves “brothers” and to grant to each other a mutual right of hunting over their lands. Nonetheless, they were cognizant of well-defined hunting “districts” exploited under the direction of the chief of a familial band. Members from another band or strangers had to obtain the permission to hunt there, though occasional incursions were accepted. Starting in 1660, conservation measures were observed in the Great Lakes and Lake Champlain area, but in the 18th century, they seemed unknown on the North Coast of the Saint Lawrence River. It seems unlikely, however, that Indigenous persons did not have enough information to devise such measures by themselves. Overall, national territorial limits and well-defined hunting districts seem to have had an Indigenous rather than a French origin. 

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Adams, "Constitutional Nationalism: Politics, Law, and Culture on the Road to Patriation" on SSRN

Eric Adams has posted "Constitutional Nationalism: Politics, Law, and Culture on the Road to Patriation" on SSRN. This chapter appears in the collection Patriation and its Consequences: Constitution Making in Canada, Lois Harder and Steve Patten eds, (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2015).

This book chapter forms part of a larger collection of reflections on the November 1981 patriation negotiations leading to the passage of the Constitution Act, 1982. A legal history of Canadian constitutional thought, it connects patriation to the powerful forces of constitutional nationalism as they emerged in Canadian law, politics, and culture. Without an amending formula in the British North America Act, an adjudicative structure in which Britain’s Judicial Committee of the Privy Council served as Canada’s highest court, and lacking foreign policy autonomy, Canada remained tethered to Britain in ways that would become increasingly contentious. For Canada’s constitutional nationalists, the continued British constitutional role served as an intolerable expression of the Dominion’s infantilized status and a barrier to Canada’s abilities to develop policies, institutions, and politics that were reflective of the desires of Canadians. While the forces of constitutional nationalism triumphed in Canada's attainment of foreign policy autonomy, the “supremacy” of the Supreme Court, and a domestic constitutional amending formula, ultimately, the patriation of 1982 resolved fewer problems than constitutional nationalists might have hoped and generated several others in the bargain

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Legal History at CLSA annual meeting

The CLSA is meeting in Ottawa this week.

Two panels are of particular interest to this blog:

[June 3 at 2:00] Legal Knowledge: Historical Perspectives (Fauteux 359) Chair – PrĂ©sidence: Michael Boudreau, St. Thomas University 
• Peter Price, Queen’s University “To Know the Law: Instructing Popular Legal Literacy in Canada, 1870-1920” 
• Mathieu Charbonneau, Carleton University, “From Socio-legal Studies to Sociology of Private Insurance: The Emergence of Modern Life Insurance Legislation in England, 1664-1774” 
• Jean Sauvageau & Claire Goggin, St. Thomas University, “Homicide et peine de mort au Canada, 1920-1949 : les effets de la Grande depression”

[June 5 at 10:45] Tort Litigation in the United States and Canada: Historical Perspectives (Fauteux 135) Chair – PrĂ©sidence: TBD 
• Lyndsay Campbell, University of Calgary, “Defaming Women: Women’s Use of Defamation in Massachusetts and Nova Scotia, 1820-40” 
• Eric H. Reiter, Concordia University, “Avenging the Memory of the Dead: Family Honour in Quebec Defamation Cases, 1885-1920” 
• R. Blake Brown, St. Mary’s University, “As a rule, it is not advisable to bring an action against a physician’: Litigating Medical Malpractice in Canada, 1902-1935”

h/t Peter Price

Friday, May 29, 2015

Adams on Canadian Constitutional Identities on SSRN

Eric Adams has posted "Canadian Constitutional Identities" on SSRN. Forthcoming in the Dalhousie Law Journal.

Here's the abstract:

Constitutions are stories nations tell about themselves. Despite the famous declaration in the Constitution Act, 1867 that the “Provinces of Canada…Desire…a Constitution similar in Principle to that of the United Kingdom,” most of Canada’s constitutional history can be understood as the search for a distinctly Canadian constitutional identity. Canadians have always looked to their constitutional instruments to both reflect and produce a particular vision of the nation and its citizens. This article focuses on the search for Canada’s constitutional identity during its first century as a nation, from Confederation until the 1960s. Drawing on a varied array of sources and voices, this article argues that the powerful yearning for identity operated as a driving force in Canadian constitutional law, politics, and culture in an era before the catalytic arrival of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Osgoode Society awarded 2015 Hugh Lawford Prize for Excellence in Legal Publishing

The Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History book series was the winner of the 2015 Hugh Lawford Award for Excellence in Legal Publishing awarded by the Canadian Association of Law Libraries at their annual meeting in Moncton. 

Congratulations to President/founder R. Roy McMurtry, editor in chief Jim Phillips, associate editor Philip Girard, and our authors past, present and future.