- SIGNALS ADVANCE OF ELECTRONIC MEDIA AS POPULAR
SOURCE FOR CANADA'S
WINNIPEG, June 27 /CNW/ - Canada's National History Society today
released the short list of finalists for the 2007 Pierre Berton Award for
achievement in popularizing Canadian History.
The Pierre Berton Award was first established in 1994 and has grown to
become the country's top honour to recognize exemplary efforts in popular
media to bring Canada's storied past to life. Prior recipients include noted
authors Peter C. Newman; Jacques Lacoursière; James Gray; Charlotte Gray; Jack
Granatstein; Will Ferguson; and Ken McGoogan as well as Bob Johnstone's radio
series "This Day in History"; The CRB Foundation/Historica's Heritage Minutes;
and CBC's Canada: A People's History.
Although the prize was always intended to recognize achievement in any
media, throughout its 13-year history the award winners have come
predominantly from the book community. For the first time this year, the short
list is dominated by producers of other media.
According to History Society president and CEO, Deborah Morrison,
"Canadian history is no different from anything else in our information world.
We've been following the shift from print to television to new media as an
important source for how we learn about our history for quite some time.
Pierre Berton was quite adept at straddling the multi-media of his day, so it
seems fitting that the Award in his name would reflect that agility."
"Each year the breadth of content, and the sophistication of the
interaction people can have with history content on digital platforms astounds
me. But all of it is still rooted in the narrative stories themselves - so
print will matter for a long time yet. Our ever growing challenge is to choose
one winner amongst an increasingly diverse range of exceptional efforts." said
This year's shortlist annotated with the selection committee's official
citations includes two repeat nominees:
Ted Barris "'Victory at Vimy' released earlier this year is the 15th book
produced by the Toronto-born writer. Ted Barris stands alone for his
ability to bring you to the frontlines of Canada's military past with
Juno: Canadians at D-Day; and Days of Victory: Behind the Glory. Barris
impressed us with the extensive range of history subjects he has written
about over the years including Canadian Music, Prairie Steamboats,
Curling, Rodeo Riding, and the Edmonton Oilers."
CBC Digital Archives "One of the most comprehensive Canadian history
collections freely available online, the CBC Digital archives features an
extremely well-catalogued inventory of over 10,000 different multi-media
entries and an integrated set of educational resources for classroom use.
Knowing that younger people are increasingly looking to the Internet for
their sources and information, this marks an incredible investment for
future generations of Canadians."
And three first time award hopefuls:
Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History, "is an imaginative website
that will intrigue a much wider audience than the secondary students for
which it's principally designed. Canadianmysteries.ca provides an
opportunity for anyone to experience how historical documents are used,
interpreted and sometimes misinterpreted to create the history we think
we know. The website will change people's perceptions of what historians
really do and why it matters."
Brian McKenna, "His most recent effort The Great War Project demonstrated
that he has lost none of his edge for innovative uses of the television
medium that captivate audiences. McKenna deserves this recognition for
the sheer volume of quality productions he's realized. He's been at this
for over 30 years - long before anyone else thought you could tell
compelling Canadian history stories on television."
Mark Zuehlke, "has produced some of the best-written popular histories
about the Canadian experience in World War II. Thoroughly researched and
well-crafted, Zuehlke's work is carving a reputation as one of this
generation's preeminent military historians. In addition to several works
about World War II including Juno Beach and Holding Juno, Zuehlke has
written about the War of 1812, Canadian volunteers in the Spanish Civil
War, as well as edited The Canadian Military Atlas."
The 2007 Pierre Berton Award winner will be announced later this Fall.
About the History Society
Canada's National History Society is a Winnipeg-based charitable
organization devoted to popularizing Canadian history. In addition to the
Pierre Berton Award, the Society is best known as publisher of The Beaver
magazine and Kayak: Canada's History Magazine for Kids. The Society also
coordinates the Governor General's Awards for Excellence in Teaching Canadian
History, which honours innovative classroom teachers, and the Hbc Local
History Grants Program supporting community-based history initiatives.
For further information:
For further information: Canada's National History Society,
firstname.lastname@example.org, 1-800-816-6777 ext 22