PRAISE FOR REASONING OTHERWISE
"A first-rate history that deserves a wide readership. The American historian Jack Hexter once said that some books should be authorized to put on their covers: "Pay attention! Listen to me! Follow along! Have fun!" This is such a book."
Winnipeg Free Press
"Like many books that are able to come up with some really key, wide-ranging insights, Reasoning Otherwise
is both interdisciplinary and accompanied by an innovative and original methodology....acts as incitement for other scholars and students to delve deeper into the complicated construction of the left."
"Essential reading for historians of labor and the left as well as of North American history more generally. It is one of those rare books that inspire you to throw out your undergraduate lecture notes and to start anew."
American Historical Review
"A fascinating and comprehensive account that will undoubtedly become the benchmark for studies of the period ... it has greatly enhanced both our understandings of the Canadian Left and of Canadian cultural history more broadly."
H-Canada, H-Net Reviews
"This is no misty-eyed nostalgic romp; McKay writes openly of the sexism, classism, and racism that plagued the left during those years and to which many on the left were obviously blind. In retrospect we can see how socialism has taken on more humanist values in response to the changing of the lens through which we view social problems.
This is all good to know. For the next time."
The Voice Magazine
is an excellent resource for anyone interested in left politics before the First World War, whether in Canada or internationally."
is a substantial achievement. It is provocative, original, and contains numerous flashes of insight that will provide scholars and students of the left with many questions to ponder and points to challenge for years to come."
As Ian McKay effectively demonstrates in this sweeping and incisive reconnaissance into the era, a rich, first formation socialism (to use his term) set itself against the emerging liberal social order and attempted to reason otherwise. . . We [need to sharpen our own analytic tool to understand the multiple and varied ways in which liberalism creates its opponents. McKays book is a crucial contribution to this task.
Canadian Historical Review
At once erudite and accessible, shrewdly critical and generously inclusive, Ian McKay shows a deep admiration for and a profound understanding of all those activists who railed against the liberal mainstream and sought to make their societies more egalitarian and democratic. . . just the kind of critical analysis and inspiration that students of the Canadian left have long been seeking.
, Professor of History, University of Toronto
A superb study of dedicated, intelligent men and women, their engagement with important issues, and their remarkable success at helping to shape working-class struggles. A must for anyone interested in Canadas political traditions and contemporary movements on the left.
, Professor of History, York University
This book tells you all you want to know about the genesis of Canadian socialism. . . ReasoningOtherwise
will become the definitive text for the foreseeable future.
Gregory S. Kealey
, Provost & Vice President Research, University of New Brunswick
PRAISE FOR IAN MCKAYS REBELS, REDS, RADICALS:
A study admirable in its balance of past and present, reflection and urgency.
A necessary project of historical retrieval, but ... also a brilliant call for the renewal of public discourse on the Left ... it should be of interest well beyond academic circles.
Canadian Historical Review
The strengths of the book are the passion of the author and his ability to move across time with a remarkable range of examples. He is also right in his willingness to open up the debate, and to see that broader social and political movementsfor womens rights and Native rights, for exampleshould in fact be understood as part of the broad family of change.
Literary Review of Canada
A stunningly clear and politically committed work.
I would recommend Rebels, Reds, Radicals
to young readers and established scholars alike, as the imperative of social justice is all too often lost in the abandon of postmodernist speculation. ...If Rebels, Reds, Radicals
is any indication of the quality of scholarship which will follow in the multi-volume work, we should all look forward to an influential contribution which will have implications for sociologists, historians, and political scientists.
Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology
McKays promised three volume reconnaissance of the Canadian Left ... will allow socialists to understand the processes that created and undermined the Lefts of the past. The result will be new insights and, undoubtedly, new disagreements and new debate. The Left can only benefit.
This book is intended as the first volume in what will probably end up being a fairly massive multi-volume history of the Canadian left by this author, and I will read them eagerly as they are released.
A Canadian Lefty in Occupied Land (blog)
A book brimming with big ideas about the history of the Canadian Left that raises issues about the nature of the Left itself. It is also an introduction to... McKays forthcoming multi-volume history of the Canadian Left, an ambitious work that, on the evidence provided by this book and other writings, will be a very important contribution.