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June 24, 2005

Strange things at Ryerson U

The Globe and Mail: MacMillan turns a new page after Paris 1919

For 27 years she teaches history at Toronto's Ryerson University. Her name is not a household word. The glitterati of Toronto society do not line up to pay $45 each to hear her speak. The media do not beg for her thoughts on world affairs and whither Canadian foreign policy. Michael Levine, agent to the stars, is not her agent. Canadian publishers reject her book-manuscript -- the product of five years work -- on the peace negotiations that followed the First World War. That is Prof. MacMillan in 2000, at age 57. In 2001, her book is published in Britain to spectacular acclaim. It wins prize after prize after prize, including the [GBP] 30,000 Samuel Johnson award for non-fiction.


She credits the Ryerson students she taught between 1975 and 2002 -- engineering students, nursing students, students of just about everything except history -- for compelling her to make her lectures interesting, and telling stories richly coloured with gossip. She once said if she hadn't dedicated her book to her family, she would have dedicated it to her Ryerson students.

Posted by jason at June 24, 2005 07:32 AM


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