Social History for Social Distancing

Like so much else, the Toronto Workers’ History Project is on hiatus as the world confronts the COVID-19 crisis. As promoters of workers’ history and participants in workers’ movements, we are thinking a lot these days about the front-line workers tasked with fighting the pandemic head-on: nurses (like those pictured above), doctors, and other medical staff. We are also in solidarity with those essential workers whose jobs require them to continue being out in the world, at heightened risk of infection:

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Japanese Canadians: Internment and Dispersal | March 3, 7pm

Tuesday, March 3, 7:00 p.m.Steelworkers Hall, 25 Cecil St. During World War II, over 20,000 Japanese Canadians were interned by the Canadian state and displaced from their homes and communities in British Columbia. Their businesses and homes, including a fleet of fishing boats, were seized and never returned or properly compensated for. A traumatic and damaging experience for those affected, this forced relocation was also the genesis of the Japanese Canadian community in Toronto, as many internees eventually settled in the city, where they

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Writing Sex Work History | Feb. 4, 7 p.m., 120 Diner

Tuesday, February 4, 7:00 p.m.120 Diner, 120 Church St., Toronto ** Note change from our usual location ** Though criminalized and pushed to the margins, sex workers have played critical roles in Toronto’s history, contributing to its economic development and fighting for the rights of queer folk and other marginalized communities. While attitudes toward sex and sex work have changed dramatically in recent decades, prostitution laws continue to marginalize and punish sex workers, and put them at high risk of violence. Generations of

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Emma Goldman in Toronto

Tuesday, November 12, 7:00 p.m.Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St. The year 2020 will mark the 80th anniversary of the death of anarchist and feminist Emma Goldman in Toronto in May 1940. Deported from the United States in 1919, Goldman spent part of her exile in Toronto during the 1920s and 1930s. Join us for an evening of remembering and learning about Emma Goldman’s life and death in Toronto.  Featuring: Emma’s Last Visit  A production of the Toronto Workers’ Theatre Group Written by Craig Heron. Directed

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Workers on Film: An Evening with CLiFF

Tuesday, October 8, 7:00 p.m.Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St. Imagine a world where thousands of films are made about workers and the conditions under which they live, work, fight, and succeed in their daily lives! Instead, the world of labour has found it increasingly difficult to communicate its message as fewer and fewer people have greater control over the means of communication – the media. It is more important than ever that working people be able to tell their own stories in

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Toronto Workers and World War II + Annual General Meeting

Tuesday, September 17, 7:00 p.m.Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St. September 20 is the 80th anniversary Canada declaring war on Germany in 1939. The next six years of World War II shook up the lives of workers in Canada and around the world. Mikhail Bjorge, author of the forthcoming book The Workers’ War, will talk to us about how workers in Toronto waged their own war on the home front. The meeting will begin with the TWHP Annual General Meeting. ACCESSIBILITY INFO: Steelworkers Hall

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Whatever Happened to Gay Liberation?

A discussion with Tom Hooper and Tim McCaskell Tuesday, June 11, 7:00 p.m. Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St. It’s been fifty years since the Stonewall riot that launched a new phase of gay organizing and since the controversial amendments to the Canadian Criminal Code that allegedly “decriminalized” gay sex. In the decade after those events, new political organizing within Toronto’s LGBTQ community fought for a radical vision of “Gay Liberation.” Organizations, newspapers, demonstrations, and celebrations blossomed. But the impact of that political

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Organizing Precarious Academic Labour

with Deborah Littman, Roland Nelson, Stephanie Ross, and Richard Wellen Tuesday, March 19, 7:00 p.m. Steelworkers’ Hall, 25 Cecil St. In recent decades, universities have turned increasingly to the use of poorly paid instructors on short-term contracts without any job security. Today a majority of university classes are taught by these workers. Since the 1970s, precariously employed university workers in Toronto have organized to improve the terms of their employment, first in the Graduate Assistants Association, then the Canadian Union of Educational Workers,

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