On 15 August 1917, the Canadian Corps for the first time under the command of General Arthur Currie captured the German strongpoint at Hill 70 near Lens, France. Through Their Eyes: A Graphic History of Hill 70 and Canada’s First World War, illustrated by Matthew Barrett and co-written with Robert Engen, depicts this remarkable but costly victory in a unique way. With comic book-style artwork, the book invites readers to reimagine the First World War through the eyes of the Canadian soldiers who lived it and to think more deeply about how we visualize and narrate the past. By provoking questions about historical accuracy, truth, and meaning, this work focuses on a specific battle of the First World War while also considering the ways history is researched, shared, and represented. Combining image and text not only invites readers to consider different ways to interpret history, it also importantly helps us understand our own role in connecting, constructing, and imagining the stories of the past.
The lecture premieres in-person at the Civic Museum, and online via the Guelph Museum’s Facebook livestream. The recorded conversation will be available on Facebook, YouTube, and the Museum Everywhere Portal after the event.
To attend the conversation in-person, registration is required. Register on Eventbrite.
Full event details available on the Guelph Museums site HERE.
Matthew Barrett has a History PhD from Queen’s University and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Canadian War Museum in 2021. He published two books in 2022: Scandalous Conduct: Canadian Officer Courts Martial, 1914–45 and Through Their Eyes: A Graphic History of Hill 70 and Canada’s First World War. He is currently managing editor for the journal Canadian Military History.