History from the Ground Up: Historical Ecology and Temporality in Colonial British Columbia

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Academic historiography generally emphasizes the diachronic processes of colonial landscape change in the New World; much less has been written about how such transformations were interpreted on the ground, at the time. This chapter examines the history of 19th-century forest clearance in the Fraser Valley, British Columbia, from the perspective of colonists actively engaged in improving the land. It argues that people experienced change in very different ways, ways which do not always corroborate the dominant view of history as progressive. This is because notions of temporality were forged in synchronic moments – the product of human actions entangled with a changing landscape that conditioned and enabled different ways of seeing.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationExploring Atlantic Transitions
Subtitle of host publicationArchaeologies of Transience and Permanence in New Found Lands
EditorsPeter E. Pope, Shannon Lewis-Simpson
Place of PublicationWoodbridge, Suffolk
PublisherBoydell Press
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9781843838593
Publication statusPublished - 19 Sept 2013

Publication series

NameSociety for Post Medieval Archaeology Monograph Series


  • British Columbia
  • Landscape Archaeology
  • Time
  • Settlement history
  • colonization


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