The Osgoode Society Legal History Workshop group is an informal evening seminar that meets on alternate Wednesdays between September and April to discuss a wide variety of topics in legal history, Canadian and international. Participants are graduate students and faculty in law and history from U of T, York, McMaster and other institutions, as well as law students and members of the profession.

Anybody interested in legal history is welcome to attend. If you would like to be put on our list to receive the papers and other notifications by e-mail, please notify j.phillips@utoronto.ca.

The workshop starts again in January 2018. The schedule is posted below. The workshop is held on Wednesday evenings, at 6.30, at the University of Toronto Law School. The schedule indicates the specific locations.


Osgoode Society Workshop – Past Years 2011-2017

SCHEDULE FOR SPRING TERM 2018

All sessions at 6.30. All sessions except March 14 in Flavelle House, Room 223, Betty Ho classroom. March 14 session in Jackman Room 225.

Wednesday January 17: Philip Girard, Osgoode Hall Law School, and Jim Phillips, University of Toronto: Aspects of the History of Law in Canada.

Wednesday January 31 – Elizabeth Koester, University of Toronto: ‘Litigating Eugenics:  The 1936 Eastview Birth Control Trial’.

Wednesday February 14: Tom Telfer, Western University: ‘The New Bankruptcy “Detective Agency”? The Origins of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy in Great Depression Canada.’

Wednesday February 28 – Donald Fyson, Laval University: TBA

Wednesday March 14: Jeff McNairn, Queen’s University: ‘ “Where covert guile and artifice abound:” Making Legal Knowledge of Insolvency and Fraud in Upper Canada, 1794-1843.’

Wednesday March 28: Michael Boudreau, St Thomas University: ‘Capital Punishment in New Brunswick, 1869-1957’.

Wednesday April 4 – Shelley Gavigan, Osgoode Hall Law School: ‘Historicizing Criminalization of Canada’s First Nations: A Project for Legal Historians?’



Professor Lori Chambers, Lakehead University

Canadian legal history has emerged as a cutting-edge field within the study of Canada's past, and Canadian legal historians are also celebrated participants in international debates about the historical role of law as both a mechanism of control and a source of social challenge. The Osgoode Society for Legal History has been essential in the national and international success of Canadian legal history and historians. The Osgoode Society not only publishes a wide range of books, but also supports students and research and facilitates communication between legal historians. The legal history workshop is a very important part of that communication. Legal historians outside of Canada frequently comment on the Osgoode Society, and its work in Canada, with considerable (and justifiable) envy. The importance of the Osgoode Society cannot be overstated.