Joy in the Mundane

 

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As we entered into the third year of the pandemic, and all the anxiety and stress that go along with it, I thought a good theme for this semester's public history course would be "Joy in the Mundane." Personally, I have found the "new normal" of the pandemic to be disheartening and dispiriting. I had a hunch, that I was not the only one feeling this way. So, in order to push back against the negative thoughts and feelings and reclaim some inspiration, excitement, and wonder, I decided to select a theme which helps us find "Joy in the Mundane." The student groups this semester were tasked with selecting common, every-day items, and creating a digital public history project that recounted their histories. These objects are often overlooked, but have fascinating stories to tell, if we only look. I hope these student projects allow you to recapture the joy in the everyday as they have helped me break out of my funk.

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Submissions from 2022

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An Exploration of the Mailbox, Leila Al-Khatib, Lena Fiona Bern, Zohra Zekria, and Millicent Lin Jing Marchant

Dentistry, Shaqeel Azees and Nicholas Kablarevic

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Dabbing in Dinnerware: An Extensive History of Dinnerware, Jordan Bhar, Sophie Walsh, Safiyyah Khan, and Junbo Cheng

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The Microphone – A History of Innovation, Sameed Chaudhry, Adrian Giammaria Giammaria, and Tejeshwar Singh Kainth

Telephone, Joaquin Amico Cueto, Hexi Zhang, and Saifuddin Farooqi Mohammed

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The History of Chocolate, Taylor Dafoe, Austin Ruffo, Rachel Ragbir, and Luna Kweder

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The History of Hats: Hats Through Time, Russell David, Sufwan Khan, 3. Alex (Bronwyn) Buckenroth, and Benjamin Lilly

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Putting the Pep Back in Your Step: The History of the Running Shoe, Megan Devogelaere and Grace Beato

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The Computer: From Concept To Commonplace, Mina Farrokhi, Thomas Tremblay, Rachael Sommerville, and Jessica McNea Dooley

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Looking Beyond the Mundane World Of Mirrors, Austin Felhaber, Dania Brown, Ashfaq Quader, and Satvik Kathpal

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The Internet: Public History Project, He Guan

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The Camera: Capturing a Moment in Time, Puneet Kapoor, Ambar Kapoor, and Kathryn Venema

Coffee, Lily Kim and Grace Rockett

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The Evolution of Cutlery – Quality to Simplicity, Keegan Pacheco and Spencer Lee

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The Hidden History of Rubber Ducks from 1867-Present Time, Jessica Rao, Erin Brooksbank, Morgan Taraborrelli, and Zachary Henderson

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The Bagels history and Importance in the Jewish Community, Chloe Ruggiero and Naumair Khilji

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Public History Blog: A History of Climate Control, Benjamin Whelan

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The History of Paper and its Relevancy in the Current Canadian Climate, Selina Withers, Madeline Rossell, Sitora Homidova, and Sohaila Ghoneim

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A Brief History of Ice Cream Development, Yiwen Zhu, Manminder Brar, and Vinh Tran