Dr. Catherine Gidney has received national recognition for her research and expertise in women’s and gender history.

Dr. Gidney, an adjunct research professor in the Department of History, is the 2018 recipient of the Marion Dewar Prize, awarded by the National Capital Committee on the Scholarship, Preservation and Dissemination of Women’s History in recognition of outstanding scholarship, strength of research, and administrative work.

“This award was completely unexpected. I was delighted to receive it,” Dr. Gidney said.

“I’ve always tried to integrate the histories of women, gender, and sexuality into my research and to be recognized for this by experts in the field is a real honour.”

Dr. Gidney believes insights from women’s and gender history are crucial to understanding contemporary society—a theme she will continue to explore this winter in her course Women and Gender in Modern Canada.
“Women’s and gender history provides perspective on how women’s and men’s experiences and identity are shaped by particular societal beliefs, values, political, and economic forces. It also gives us insight into the forces that have shaped our own lives,” she said.

“For example, the #MeToo movement has brought sexual harassment to the forefront in the past year. Women’s and gender history can provide insight into the historical forces that have made that movement necessary and help answer why it has happened at this particular moment in time.”

Dr. Gidney is the 14th recipient of the Marion Dewar Prize, which was created in 2004 in honour of outstanding feminist activist Marion Dewar, who served as Ottawa’s mayor from 1978 to 1985.