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Saskatoon Women’s Calendar Collective (SWCC)

A co-operative with a localized and evolving membership, the Saskatoon Women’s Calendar Collective (SWCC) has made Canadian women’s history an annual bestseller for over thirty years. In 1972, five University of Saskatchewan students formed the SWCC with the aim of producing popular history focusing solely on the lives and achievements of Canadian women. Few secondary sources on women’s history existed, and this largely undiscovered territory had yet to become mainstream in either academia or school curricula. None of the founding women had any prior experience of publishing, but the format they decided upon—a daybook calendar—was inspired: it enabled them to transform an extraordinary diversity of subjects into an accessible and practical format. With assistance from a federal grant, the 1974 first edition of Herstory: The Canadian Women’s Calendar, was published.

That calendar was remarkably successful. Although the first members of the SWCC might not originally have looked further than a single year, it was clear they had struck a chord with a large reading audience. Producing the Herstory calendar became an annual event. Over fifty women have been members of the Collective, and by 2005 they had published a combined 1,680 pages of biographies, photographs, and organizational histories about Canadian women in Herstory. An anthology, Inspiring Women, was published in 2003.

Cheryl Avery

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Further Reading

Holmlund, M. and G. Youngberg (eds.). 2003. Inspiring Women: A Celebration of Herstory. Regina: Coteau Books.
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University of Regina Government of Canada Government of Saskatchewan Canadian Plains Research Center
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