Events & News
Events & News
Canadian Carnival Freaks Focus of Nicholas Publication

Canadian Carnival Freaks Focus of Nicholas Publication

Date: Tuesday, June 05, 2018
Nicholas' Book Cover
Media Folder: 
St. Jerome’s University faculty member Jane Nicholas (Department of Sexuality, Marriage and Family and Department of History) takes readers on a search for answers in her publication Canadian Carnival Freaks and the Extraordinary Body, 1900–1970s. Nicholas offers a sophisticated analysis of the place of the freak show in twentieth-century Canadian culture in her recent book published by the University of Toronto Press.  
Canadian Carnival Freaks and the Extraordinary Body, 1900–1970s is the first full length study of the freak show in Canada: a significant contribution to our understanding of the history of Canadian popular culture, attitudes toward children, and the social construction of able-bodiedness.  
“When I began researching this book, I did not expect all of the different places it would take me,” noted Nicholas, “I was especially moved by the histories of children who were exhibited on the sideshows around the country for almost a century.
Children with disabilities played an important role in Canadian history, although their stories are not particularly well known.  I hope this book can provide a glimpse of their stories as they were intertwined with medicine, business, and government.  The freak show was not a sideshow of Canadian history; it was an important element that reflected and challenged what Canadians considered 'normal' and was deeply embedded in many aspects of society.”
Nicholas has also authored The Modern Girl:  Feminine Modernities, The Body, and Commodities in the 1920s, and co-edited Feminist Pedagogy in Higher Education:  Critical Theory and Practice and Contesting Bodies and Nation in Canadian History. The St. Jerome’s University community is delighted to celebrate the publication of this new book with Dr. Nicholas.

Marilyn Caird, Administrative Manager
Vice President Academic and Dean’s Office
St. Jerome’s University
(519) 884-8111 x28245