Dr. James Murton

Dr. James Murton portrait
Professor / Faculty of Arts and Science - History, Anthropology and Ancient Studies - History
Full-time Faculty
Graduate Program Faculty
BA, University of British Columbia
MA, University of Victoria
PhD, Queen's University
Research Interests:

North American environmental history; Food and Agriculture; Canadian West; British Columbia.

Current & Future Research:

Empire Grown: Land, Agriculture and the British Colonial Food System in Canada

My major research interrogates the implications for Canadian communities of late-19th to mid-20th century food systems, seeking to discover the effects on local environment, and community cohesion, of a turn from local foods to distant producers in Canada, the United States and the British Empire.

This research is funded by a SSHRC Standard Research Grant.


Creating a Modern Countryside: Liberalism and Land Resettlement in British Columbia. Vancouver: UBC Press, 2007.Refereed Articles

“Creating Order: the Liberals, the Landowners, and the Draining of Sumas Lake, British Columbia,” Environmental History, forthcoming January, 2008.

“The Normandy of the New World: Canada Steamship Lines and the Selling of Old Quebec,” in Nicole Neatby, ed., Remembering Canadian Pasts in Public (Toronto: University of Toronto Press) (under review).

“What J.W. Clark Saw in British Columbia, or, Nature and the Machine: A Photo Essay,” B.C. Studies 142/143 (Summer/Autumn 2004): 129-52.

“La « Normandie du Nouveau Monde »: la société Canada Steamship Lines, l’antimodernisme et la promotion du Québec ancien,” Revue d’histoire de l’Amérique française 55(1) (Été 2001): 3-44.

Winner of the Prix Guy et Lilianne Frégault for best article published in the Revue in 2001-02.

Other Publications

“Forum: Appraising Cole Harris’ Making Native Space,” (with Keith Thor Carlson, Sarah Carter, Kate McPherson, and Cole Harris), Native Studies Review 16(2) (2005): 125-49.

Three entries in The Encyclopedia of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2005):

“Back to the Farm Movement”: 220.

“Country Life Movement”: 346-7.

“Irrigation”: 567-8.

“Irrigation and Farming,” in The Atlas of U.S. and Canadian Environmental History (Routledge, 2003): 90-91.

“National Parks: What are they Good for? A Review Essay” B.C. Studies 136 (2002-03): 111-115.