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Future Projects

I have a number of interests that I would like to explore once I have completed my PhD, these include: First Nations health, the transmission of knowledge from First Nations to Europeans and the subsequent effect in the European medical world, and media and health. This page is a work in progress, and new projects will be added as suitable proposals are developed.

A History of Health Education for First Nations people in Northern Canada 1966-2006

 Aboriginal youth in Northern Canada face serious health issues, especially in relation to treatable diseases and addictions. The history of government intervention regarding these struggles is plagued by both racial and class concerns. As such the main goal of the project is to better understand health education and health promotion strategies for First Nations youth living in Northern Canada from 1966-2006. In the context of increased interest in the history of childhood and child health, scholarly interest in the health-related concerns of First Nations youth remains oddly neglected. Indeed, the general secondary literature focusing on the history of child health in Canada, especially after the Second World War, is limited. If the present efforts to improve the quality of life enjoyed by Aboriginal youth in northern communities are to be effective, then it is essential that we reach a more in-depth understanding of previous initiatives in this domain.


The project, examining the period from 1966-2006, has been divided into two sections: (1) To examine the interplay between government agencies regarding health promotion and education for First Nations adolescents; taking into account the complex role mass media can play in policy development and dissemination. The first section of the project will examine policy reports from Health Canada, health and education initiatives introduced by the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs, and provincial Ministry of Education documents regarding the health education curriculum in secondary schools in Northern Canada. Many of these sources have been digitized and are readily available on the World Wide Web (2) To explore the roles and responsibilities of the individuals charged with implementing government policy—teachers, public health officials, and members of the community. In the second phase of the project I intend to use a socio-anthropological approach to better understand the roles and responsibilities of the public health nurse, the teacher, and the community in promoting health and health education to First Nations adolescents. Oral histories, the First Nations NCB Progress Reports, and the minutes of staff meetings will hopefully shed additional light on to the duties of those responsible for implementing government policies.















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<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[1]<!--[endif]--> Health Canada, A Statistical Profile on the Health of First Nations in Canada for the Year 2000 Report, states that compared with the overall Canadian population, First Nations youth had elevated rates of pertussis (2.2 times), rubella (7 times), tuberculosis (6 times), and shingellois (2.1 times) for the year 2000.

<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[2]<!--[endif]--> The two part Hawthrone report first published in 1966 was a federal government survey of the contemporary Indians of Canada: Economic, Political, Educational Needs and Policies.

<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[3]<!--[endif]--> In the last ten years British and American historians have further refined their interest in the history of childhood and have begun to create a volume of literature dedicated to the history of child health. Most prominently, Hilary Marland and Marijke Gijswifjt-Hofstra (eds), Cultures of Child Health in Britain and the Netherlands (Amsterdam: Ropodi, 2003); Alexandra Minna Stern and Howard Markel (eds), Formative Years: Children’s Health in the United States, 1880-2000 (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2002); and Roger Cooter (ed.), In the Name of the Child: Health and Welfare 1880-1940 (London: Routledge, 1992).

<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[4]<!--[endif]--> With the notable exceptions of Mona Gleason, Myra Rutherdale, Cynthia Comacchio, and Sharon Richardson.

<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[5]<!--[endif]--> Similar research has been carried out for post-WW II United Kingdom by: Virginia Berridge and Kelly Loughlin (eds), Medicine, the Market and the Mass Media: Producing Health in the Twentieth Century ( London: Routledge, 2005).