Anne Theresa DANCE
Anne Theresa DANCE
Visiting Researcher (September 19 2016 - April 2018)
I hold an Honours BA from St. Thomas University (New Brunswick), an MA in History from the University of Victoria (British Columbia), and a PhD from the University of Stirling’s School of History and Politics, where I was a Commonwealth Scholar. I recently completed a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council postdoctoral fellowship at Memorial University of Newfoundland, where I worked with Arn Keeling (Geography) and John Sandlos (History).
My primary research project at ICAS explores how landscapes and communities change over time. As an environmental historian, I study not only the physical transformations that occur during extractive projects, but how different stakeholders manage and tell stories about these changes. In particular, I am interested in efforts designed to mitigate and repair (or “remediate”) landscapes and the changing goals of land rehabilitation and reclamation. I am currently completing a book based on my PhD thesis on the remediation history of the Sydney tar ponds and the Athabasca oil sands. This research identifies profound jurisdictional uncertainties and evolving reclamation standards at both sites and asks how our understanding of “successful” cleanup projects has changed over time.
I am also currently studying Winnipeg’s “Oracle of Wheat,” agricultural journalist and feminist E. Cora Hind. From 1935-1937, Hind—then a septuagenarian—visited twenty-seven countries. Her Grand Tour was a mix of tourist adventuring, celebrity hobnobbing, scientific networking, and amateur ethnography. Her writing focused on local agricultural practices and rural life and illustrates the growing tensions between popular conceptualizations of rural stewardship, objectives of new Green Revolution technologies, and impacts of large state-directed agricultural mega-projects. This project explores Hind’s “agrarian diplomacy” and boosterism and how she promoted a very specific portrait of farming in the Canadian West and abroad, one that retains its power to this day.
In addition to this historical research, I maintain a strong interest in the role of legislatures as public spaces in Canada and around the world.