Mark Bray will present Selkirk College’s Spring 2018 Mir Centre for Peace Lecture Series event on March 22 at Nelson’s Civic Theatre.

U.S. scholar to speak at Selkirk College

Historian and author Mark Bray will be a featured speaker at Selkirk College’s Lecture Series in Nel.

NELSON — Historian and author Mark Bray will be a featured speaker at Selkirk College’s Mir Centre for Peace Lecture Series in Nelson next month.

His talk will focus on the history of anti-fascism in Europe and North America over the past century, particularly as it pertains to recent citizen organization against the far-right movement of neo-Nazis and white supremacists.

Bray was thrust onto the international academia stage this past August when images from the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia encapsulated the tinderbox tension south of the border.

A historian of human rights, terrorism and political radicalism in modern Europe, Bray is the author of Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook that was released in early 2017. Bray’s scholarly work makes him a coveted guest on American political talk shows and a valued source for media attempting to explain a movement that few understand.

“Most historians want what we write to matter,” says Bray, who is an associated visiting scholar at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. “The study of the past should influence how we live the present. So in that sense, it’s gratifying to see this level of interest in the work about the relevance of the history to current politics. On the other hand, a lot of the interest happened because someone died. If Heather Heyer hadn’t been murdered in Charlottesville (last year), then Charlottesville as a moment would not have risen to the level of public conversation that it did.”

Bray’s book traces the history of Antifa dating back to the early 20th Century and offers a roadmap for putting the movement’s principles into practice. Much of what the average observer has seen in media coverage over the last few months in regards to Antifa has been the opposite of peace, but Bray asserts that the movement is misunderstood.

“It brings up a lot of interesting questions,” he says. “Does a peaceful world include police and prisons and militaries? Do you have to be an absolutist pacifist who condemns physical force under any context in order to qualify as a peaceful person? If there is a threat of a violent white supremacist movement or a neo-Nazi movement that is intimidating people, then is self-defence contrary to the notions of peace? These are the very questions at the heart of it.”

Bray has presented his work in Toronto and Montreal, but the stop in Nelson will be his first visit to a rural Canadian community.

Bray’s lecture, The History and Politics of Anti-Fascism, will take place on Thursday, March 22 at 7 p.m. at the Civic Theatre in Nelson. Tickets are available online at selkirk.ca/mir or at the door ($17 general public and $15 student/senior). For more information call 250.365.1261.

Just Posted

Rossland council sets direction for local pot rules

No limit on number of shops, but location, public smoking regulated

Trail taxpayers face $16,000 tab for vandalized parking meters

In a recent rash of vandalism in downtown Trail, 30+ parking meters were broken into & coins stolen

UPDATED: Horgan says B.C. defending its interests in Trans Mountain pipeline

Canadian finance minister’s update comes the same day Kinder Morgan shareholders plan to meet

Trail council pitches relief to Rossland ballplayers

Rossland Mayor Kathy Moore said it’s time to look at the future of recreation funding

Kootenay unemployment rate down in April

Jobless figure stood at 5.4% last month

Police release video on how to ‘run, hide, fight’ if there’s an active shooter

Vancouver police offer video with input from E-Comm, BC EHS, Vancouver Fire and Rescue

RCMP caution boaters after two kids pass out from carbon monoxide poisoning

Both children were given oxygen and taken to hospital

B.C. invests $115M to create 200 new nurse practitioner jobs

Health Minister says 780,000 B.C. residents don’t have a family doctor

Supreme Court rules social housing residents in B.C. deserve rights too

Tenants trying to stabilize their living situations should not face less legal rights than those paying market rates: Judge

Union calls on prime minister to step into ‘stalled’ Phoenix compensation talks

For more than two years, thousands of federal workers have been affected by Phoenix system

Judge: President Trump can’t block critics on Twitter

The judge had suggested that Trump mute rather than block some of his critics

NFL owners adopt new policy to address anthem protests

Commissioner Roger Goodell said the change was approved unanimously by owners

Unicyclist starts his cross-Canada trip in Vancouver

Taylor Stark started his journey May 7

Film Review: On Chesil Beach

Saoirse Ronan continues to shine in adaptation Ian McEwan novel about young newlyweds on their wedding day

Most Read