The world of 1914 looks much different than the world of today. One way that subjects of the British Empire viewed each other was through the lens of media. At the level of groups and individuals, the ways in which non-Europeans were represented a hundred years ago in Canadian newspapers reflects prevailing (and shifting) discourses and stereotypes in an Imperial world. These changes in perception and understanding point to the permeable contours of a nation’s visual culture – what defines “us” versus “them”. The items catalogued here include historical photographs and political cartoons printed in newspapers. They can be taken at face value as simply images but perhaps there is a deeper story at work. Whose perspective are these pictures from? Who is the intended audience? Are there similarities between cartoons and photographs? These are just a few of the questions raised by seeing history visually.

You can click on each item thumbnail below to see a larger version. For certain documents, hover over particular parts of it to see its connection to other documents and events. At the bottom of the larger version is a link to “View Details”. Here you can find a higher resolution version of the item, see detailed bibliographic information and (if applicable) view the multiple pages of documents associated with the item.