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Shawn Selway

Shawn Selway

Shawn Selway has a B.A. in Religious Studies from McMaster and is a licensed industrial mechanic (Millwright) who trained in the Steel Company of Canada's Basic Works in Hamilton, Ontario. He operates Pragmata Historic Machinery Conservation Services, a company which provides consulting and technical services to preservationists. He is interested in the relation between the technical and the political solutions to problems.



Nobody Here Will Harm You. Wolsak & Wynn , forthcoming in 2016
Eligible for National Public Readings Program:


Presentation Description

Following the Second World War, the Canadian State acquired the technical means to assert its sovereignty in the North. In order to show "effective occupation" of the territory, services provided to Southern Canadians by the nascent welfare state apparatus were extended to the North, including medical services. For a decade the Department of Transport vessel C.D. Howe travelled every summer through the Eastern Arctic carrying a Medical Patrol to each coastal settlement. Tuberculosis was believed to be epidemic, and in order to bring the disease under control about 1200 Inuit were evacuated to sanatoria in the south, principally to the Mountain Sanatorium in Hamilton, Ontario. There they remained for up to two years. Their sojourn at the San was disruptive of Inuit communities in the north, and of the lives of the individuals who went south. The episode raises many political, cultural and ethical questions which are still being worked through today.


Presentation Length:
deck of about 120 slides- length varies as per desired focus
recent Canadian history, Euro-Canadian and aboriginal relations
secondary school
Audience Size:
Variable, but the topics raised require room and time for discussion.