The game is six degrees of Canadian history. Take two seemingly unrelated pieces of Canadian culture and connect the dots through various people, places and events to discover how they’re distantly — or maybe not-so-distantly — related. Along the way, we visit the quizzical and curious, the tragic and comic, and everything in between.
Women’s suffrage (or franchise) is the right of women to vote in political elections; campaigns for this right generally included demand for the right to run for public office. The women’s suffrage movement was a decades-long struggle intended to address fundamental issues of equity and justice and to improve the lives of Canadians.
Beth Powning, writer, photographer (b at Putnam, Connecticut 15 Aug 1949). Powning majored in creative writing at Sarah Lawrence College in New York. She moved to an old farm near Sussex, New Brunswick in 1972, where she ran a pottery business with her husband, artist and photographer Peter Powning.
Ada Mackenzie, golfer (b at Toronto 30 Oct 1891; d at Richmond Hill, Ont 25 Jan 1973). Mackenzie paved the way for women to take golf seriously by founding the first club restricted to women, the Ladies' Golf and Tennis Club, in Thornhill, Ont, in May 1925. Mackenzie's own play set high standards.
Joni (Roberta Joan) Mitchell (b Anderson). Singer-songwriter, guitarist, pianist, poet, painter, b Fort Macleod, near Lethbridge, Alta, 7 Nov 1943. She was raised in Saskatoon and developed childhood interests in painting, poetry, and music, all of which found expression in her later career.
Claire Harris, poet (born 13 June 1937 in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad). Harris has written numerous collections of poetry since her first volume, Fables from the Women’s Quarters, was published in 1984. Her work has garnered national and international acclaim — she was nominated for the Governor General’s Award for Poetry, Fables won the Commonwealth Award for Poetry. Harris’ poetry often voices the psychological struggles experienced by women of color who face oppression and violence.
Angela James, hockey player (born 22 December 1964 in Toronto, ON). Known as "the Wayne Gretzky of women's hockey," Angela James was a pioneering and dominant force in women's hockey during the 1980s and 1990s. James led the Canadian women’s hockey team to four world championships (1990, 1992, 1994, and 1997). She was also one of the first three women to be inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation Hall of Fame. When James was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame (in Toronto) in 2010, she was one of the first two women, the first openly gay player, and the second black athlete to ever be inducted.
Every conversation with Canadian mogul queen Jennifer Heil heralds a new adventure: surfing, Third World development, politely picking the pockets of Canada's business elite, rock climbing, jewellery design - and that thing she does so well with a pair of skis and a total absence of fear.