When I was an undergraduate at the University of New Brunswick in the late 1990s and early 2000s, the name “Acadiensis” always triggered within me a certain sense of awe and wonder. Don’t get me wrong, I was well aware that it was an academic journal, that it published articles on the history of the Atlantic Region, and that it was produced somewhere on the university campus. It was hard not to be aware to some degree. I can’t tell you how many Acadiensis articles I had to read as part of my honours history degree, but it was definitely a lot.
Nevertheless, that didn’t stop me or some of my fellow honours students from developing a sort of nerdy reverence for the journal. We viewed, somewhat naively, Acadiensis as a symbol of the craft we were training to join, of both the historians who had come before us and the history that had yet to be written. It also didn’t hurt that the articles in the journal actually made the Atlantic Region’s history interesting, something that many of us hadn’t encountered before that point in our formal educations.
It is many years, degrees, and full- and part-time jobs and positions later, and I still have a lot of respect for the journal. Of course, I’m now much less naive about the general operations of an academic journal, but that doesn’t diminish my appreciation for all that Acadiensis has done to bring the history of the Atlantic Region to the fore, as David Frank described so well in a presentation to the Organization of American Historians Annual Meeting in 1999.
With the launch of a new blog this past July, along with a new website, Acadiensis has entered the next phase in its mission to promote the history of the Atlantic Region. Much to my delight, I was asked to be a regular contributor to the blog. I accepted, with the understanding that I’ll be writing a few posts per year on a variety of history-related topics. For example, I will soon be assuming the position of Assistant Professor of History and Canadian Studies at the University of Maine, and regularly contributing to the blog is potentially a great way to encourage more cross-border scholarship and understanding in the region. Whatever the topic, this former undergrad, who was once filled with nerdy reverence, is just glad to be a part of it all.
For a good introduction to the Acadiensis Blog, click here.
To read my first contribution to the blog, a review of Ronald Rees’s New Brunswick: An Illustrated History (Halifax: Nimbus Publishing, 2014), click here.
If you’re interested in contributing, contact Corey Slumkoski, the Digital Communications Editor for Acadiensis: email@example.com.