Good Intentions Gone Awry: Emma Crosby and the Methodist Mission on the Northwest Coast

Jean Barman, Jan Hare

$34.95

Unlike most missionary scholarship that focuses on male missionaries, Good Intentions Gone Awry chronicles the experiences of a missionary wife. It presents the letters of Emma Crosby, wife of the well-known Methodist missionary Thomas Crosby, who came to Fort Simpson, near present-day Prince Rupert, in 1874 to set up a mission among the Tsimshian people.

Emma Crosby’s letters to family and friends in Ontario shed light on a critical era and bear witness to the contribution of missionary wives. They mirror the hardships and isolation she faced as well as her assumptions about the supremacy of Euro-Canadian society and of Christianity. They speak to her “good intentions” and to the factors that caused them to “go awry.” The authors critically represent Emma’s sincere convictions towards mission work and the running of the Crosby Girls’ Home (later to become a residential school), while at the same time exposing them as a product of the times in which she lived. They also examine the roles of Native and mixed-race intermediaries who made possible the feats attributed to Thomas Crosby as a heroic male missionary persevering on his own against tremendous odds.

This book is a valuable contribution to Canadian history and will appeal to readers in women’s, Canadian, Native, and religious studies, as well as those interested in missiology in the Canadian West.

AWARDS

  • 2006, Commended – Book Writing Competition on BC History, British Columbia Historical Federation.
  • 2006, Short-listed – Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Book Prize, BC Book Prizes.

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November 2006, PB, 344 pages

ISBN 9780774812719

Categories: , .

Description

Jean Barman, Professor Emeritus, has published more than twenty books, including the winner of the 2006 City of Vancouver Book Award, Stanley Park’s Secret (Harbour Publishing, 2005). Her lifelong pursuit to enrich the history of BC has earned her such honours as a Governor General’s Award, a George Woodcock Lifetime Achievement Award, a Lieutenant Governor’s Medal for Historical Writing and a position as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. She lives in Vancouver, BC.

Jan Hare is Anishinaabe and member of the M’Chigeeng First Nation. She teaches in the Department of Language and Literacy Education at the University of British Columbia.

Additional information

Dimensions 8 × 8 × .25 in

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