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An article by Dr. Ashleigh Androsoff (PhD) and books by Dr. Valerie Korinek (PhD) and Dr. Sarah Nickel (PhD) have received awards from the Canadian Historical Association. (Images: top—U of T Press, bottom—UBC Press)

USask historians win national writing prizes

Three College of Arts and Science faculty members are among this year’s winners of scholarly writing awards from the Canadian Historical Association


By Chris Putnam

Three faculty members of the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Arts and Science are among this year’s winners of scholarly writing awards from the Canadian Historical Association (CHA).

In June, the CHA announced the recipients of awards from its affiliated committees. They include Dr. Ashleigh Androsoff (PhD), Dr. Valerie Korinek (PhD) and Dr. Sarah Nickel (PhD).

Ashleigh Androsoff: The Hilda Neatby Prize in Women’s and Gender History

Dr. Ashleigh Androsoff (PhD)
Dr. Ashleigh Androsoff (PhD)

Androsoff, an assistant professor in the Department of History, received the Hilda Neatby Prize in Women’s and Gender History for her article “The Trouble with Teamwork: Doukhobor Women’s Plow Pulling in Western Canada, 1899” in The Canadian Historical Review.  The award was presented by the CHA and the Canadian Committee in Women's History.

In her article, Androsoff analyzes pictures from 1899 of Doukhobor women in Canada performing intense physical labour. Androsoff demonstrates how the women’s work challenged assumptions of settler experiences in the West.

A scholar of Western Canadian history, Androsoff has completed several projects examining and preserving the history of the Doukhobors in Canada.

“The Doukhobors are actually a very useful case study for Canadian history,” said Androsoff in a 2019 interview. “They’re very interesting in their own right—they’ve had a very storied history in Canada and in Russia—but they’re also really useful for us to study to gain insight into how Canada has treated ethnic and religious minorities over the 20th and 21st century.”

Valerie Korinek: The CCWH English-Language Book Prize in Women's and Gender History

Dr. Valerie Korinek (PhD)
Dr. Valerie Korinek (PhD)

Korinek, a professor in the Department of History and vice-dean faculty relations for the College of Arts and Science, received the English-Language Book Prize for her 2018 book, Prairie Fairies: A History of Queer Communities and People in Western Canada, 19301985.

The prize is presented every two years on behalf of the Canadian Committee on Women’s and Gender History (CCWH).

Drawing on oral, archival and cultural histories, Prairie Fairies reconstructs the experiences of queer urban and rural people on the prairies with a focus on the cities of Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Calgary.

“It was important to write Prairie Fairies so this history was known—outside of the community of individuals who participated in this world, very few knew these histories—and I hope prairie queer people will never be excluded from prairie histories again,” said Korinek in a 2019 interview.

Previous honours for Korinek’s book include a Clio Prize from the CHA, a Saskatchewan Book Award and the CSN-RÉC Book Prize.

Sarah Nickel: The Indigenous History Book Prize

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Dr. Sarah Nickel (PhD)

Nickel, an assistant professor in the Department of Indigenous Studies, received the 2020 Indigenous History Book Prize presented by the CHA on behalf of the Indigenous History Group.

The award recognizes Nickel’s 2019 book, Assembling Unity: Indigenous Politics, Gender, and the Union of BC Indian Chiefs, in which she examines political activism by Indigenous people in British Columbia between the 1960s and 1980s, using the Union of BC Indian Chiefs as a case study.

“For me, the organization—which is still active today—provided a unique opportunity to explore the modern B.C. Indigenous rights movement using this organization as an anchor point,” said Nickel in an interview this April.

Assembling Unity was also shortlisted for the CHA’s Best Scholarly Book in Canadian History Prize and received an honourable mention for the Book Prize of the Political History Group, another CHA-affiliated committee.

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