Rekindling the Spirit of 1919 – Conference

Posted April 7th, 2009

May 8 to10 Rekindling the Spirit of 1919
Knox United Church 400 Edmonton Street
Weekend celebration of the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike with a focus on what we can learn from this important historical event. A time and place for those promoting social justice and environmental issues in workplaces, community, and schools. A chance to meet, learn, plan and mobilize.

Friday; May 8th 7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m
Panel presentation on history of the strike and it’s relevance to today with anti-poverty activist John Clarke, labour historian James Naylor and others.
John Clarke came to Canada in 1976 from London, England where he had been active in high school organizing and trade union struggles. He took a job at the Westinghouse Plant in London, Ontario and became a shop steward with United Electrical Workers, Local 546. In 1982, he was laid off and became involved in organizing unemployed workers. The following year, he was elected President of the newly formed London Union of Unemployed Workers (LUUW). In 1989 this organization was one of many that worked on a March on the Ontario Legislature and this led to the formation of the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP). He became an organizer with OCAP in 1990 and has remained with that organization ever since.

Jim Naylor is a labour historian teaching at Brandon University. He has written about the 1919 Canadian labour uprising in The New Democracy: Challenging the Social Order in Industrial Ontario, 1914-1925 and contributed to a reappraisal of the Winnipeg General Strike in C. Heron, ed., The Workers’ Revolt in Canada, 1917-1925. He is currently engaged in a study of socialism in Canada during the 1930s and 1940s in which he explores the collapse of the working-class identity and unity that was so apparent in the General Strike movement after World War One.