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description archivistique
John Carl Ridd
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Carl Ridd Fonds

  • CA UCA Acc: 09-59, ID# 3271
  • Fonds
  • 1950 - 2004

The collection contains records pertaining to – and generated by – Ridd’s activities as a social activist, a United Church minister in Manitoba and an academic (first as a student and later as a professor) at United College, Drew University and the University of Winnipeg. The records in this collection illuminate Ridd’s life from the beginning of his post-secondary education (the early 1950s) through to his death (2003). These records take on a number of physical forms, most frequently including newspaper clippings, magazine and journal articles, photocopied excerpts from books, briefs and reports, correspondence, sermons, course lecture outlines and handouts and class notes and assignments.
Relating to Ridd’ activities as an academic, the collection contains records from courses Ridd took as a student of English and Theology in Manitoba in the 1950s, as well as Ridd’s years spent as a doctoral candidate at Drew University. The collection also contains a large number of records originating from or utilized in the numerous Religious Studies courses taught by Ridd as a professor at United College and the University of Winnipeg. Records pertaining to Ridd’s research interests – various 19th and 20th century authors, the history of “western” consciousness and thought, religion and ethics – as well as records pertaining to the purpose and function of a university are found in the collection.
Relating to Ridd’s activities as a United Church adherent and minister, the collection contains records generated by Ridd as a minister at Emerson – Dominion City pastoral charge in Manitoba in the late 1950s and early 1960s as well as at Eastside Terrace Methodist Church in Paterson, New Jersey in the mid-1960s. Ridd’s sermons and the historical development of the United Church’s presence in Emerson – Dominion City charge are particularly prominent. A large number of documents generated by Ridd’s presence on numerous United Church committees (meeting in Winnipeg) throughout his adult life are also present in the collection. These records focus particularly on the relationship of the church to social, cultural and civic issues at the local, national and international level.
Relating to Ridd’s activities as a social justice activist, the collection contains a very large group of records collected or generated by Ridd as he monitored – and attempted to intervene in – various issues. The following areas are most numerously represented in the collection: human rights violations in El Salvador, Nicaragua and Guatemala; American foreign policy and perceived imperialist tendencies (especially in Central America and the Gulf); media critiques and propaganda; the cost of living in Winnipeg (including housing costs and taxation); Canadian federal and provincial government spending and budgets; Canadian social assistance (including the “safety net” of pension, healthcare and Child and Family Services) and unemployment in Canada; the Free Trade Agreement and the North American Free Trade Agreement; energy developments (especially nuclear energy) and the state of the environment; abortion, feminism and homosexuality in Christian perspectives; the Canadian economy and economic injustice; peace and conflict (particularly the Middle East); the Winnipeg Jets and the Thin Ice coalition; education (including teaching liberal arts, the purpose of education and religious education in schools); treatment of First Nations groups in Canada and the role of the Church in civic and social issues.
The majority of the records in this collection were not originated by Ridd. Rather, the collection is comprised largely of documents collected by Ridd. These documents – frequently – have been annotated or interacted with by Ridd and, in many cases, indicate the nature of Ridd’s interests and opinions. Documents in the collection originated by Ridd frequently draw on or make reference to the material contained in his collected records. Thus each series in the collection contains three types of indications of Ridd’s concerns: 1) records collected from various sources by Ridd, 2) Ridd’s annotations or markings on the collected records, and 3) documents originated by Ridd himself.
A stress on interrelationship is also apparent in the collection. Ridd’s work in one area of his life frequently appears to have overlapped with his interests in another area. As a result, identical records sometimes appear at multiple locations within the collection (a magazine article pertaining to a certain social issue could, for example, also be found as an inspiration for a sermon or as a class handout for a university course).

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#9 National and Civic Social Justice Issues in Canada

This series contains a wide variety of types of records. Many of the records in this series have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. This series gathers together records that describe and monitor social (and social justice) conditions in Winnipeg, Manitoba and Canada. Prominent topics at the national level include treatment of First Nations groups, responsible lifestyles, changes in Canadian agricultural practices, a “Human Context for Science and Technology” conference, civil disobedience and repression of civil disobedience, safety issues relating to food irradiation, Canadian food production, Canadian labour history and rights. Prominent topics at the provincial level include Hogwatch Manitoba and education (including religious teachings in schools). Prominent topics at the civic level include Winnipeg’s inner city, housing options for low-income families, mosquito fogging, future plans for development in Winnipeg, a demonstration against American aggression towards Grenada in 1983 and “squeegee kids."

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*#10 Sermons, Theology and United Church Material

The series is comprised of a number of types of records, including sermon transcripts written by Ridd and a large number of records generated by the United Church of Canada. Many of the records in this folder have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. This series gathers together records pertaining to 1) Ridd’s work as an ordained United Church minister (both full-time and casually), 2) records generated by the United Church of Canada and 3) records relating to various denominations or theological issues. All of the records in the series have been divided into three sub-series.

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*#11 Course Material and University Records

A wide variety of types of records make up the series, including a large number of records originated by Carl Ridd and a smaller body of records originated by students. Many of the records in this folder have been collected, rather than originated, by Ridd. The series has been divided into three sub-series: Ridd as a professor, Ridd as a student and academic or scholarly matters.

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*#12 International Social Justice Issues

A wide variety of types of records make up the series. Many of the records in the series have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. The series gathers together records relating to Ridd’s interest in social justice issues taking place outside of Canada. Prominent issues in the series - besides those represented in the sub-series - include groups involved in international aid.

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#14 Disparate Records

A wide variety of types of records make up the series. Many of the records have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. The series gathers together a group of records that do not appear to have any topical or chronological cohesiveness. It is unclear how Ridd had used, or intended to use, the records as they appear in the folders. The records pertain to a wide variety of topics that include Ridd’s intellectual, ministerial and social justice interests.

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#2 Canadian Politics (Federal and Provincial)

The material in this series is comprised of a wide variety of types of records. Many of the records in this series have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. The series contains records that pertain to issues arising from both the Canadian federal government and Manitoba provincial government. Prominent topics in the series include changes to healthcare and social services, Canadian foreign policy (especially in a violent world), the state of democracy in Canada (often from a concerned perspective), scandals and decadence amongst politicians, Canada’s New Democratic Party and the nature of Canada’s constitution (especially regarding challenges to Canada’s unity). See also series #3 (“Economic Issues”) and # 9 (“National and Civic Social Justice Issues in Canada”).

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#4 Energy and Environmental Issues

The series is comprised of a wide variety of types of records, including a sizeable number of records originating in direct relation to the Canadian government. Many of the records have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. The series contains records that pertain to Ridd’s position as chairman of the Manitoba Energy Council (records primarily from the 1980s), environmental degradation in Canada (particular water) and Ridd’s membership in the Lake of the Woods District Property Owners Association (records from 1995 – 2003).

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#4A Nuclear Energy and Waste

The sub-series is comprised of a wide variety of types of records, including a number of records generated by the government or published to inform the public. Many of the records have been collected, rather than originated, by Carl Ridd. This sub-series gathers together records pertaining to new developments in the field of nuclear energy, the production of nuclear energy, nuclear as a commodity and – predominantly – the question of what to do with nuclear waste. In particular, the question of storing nuclear waste below ground (and the resulting environmental impact) is addressed. The records in this sub-series focus on Canada and Manitoba.

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#9A Jets / Arena

The sub-series includes a wide variety of types of records, some of which were generated by the Thin Ice coalition and a large number of which were generated from Winnipeg news media sources. This sub-series gathers together records pertaining to the Winnipeg Jets prior to their departure from Winnipeg in the mid-1990s. Prominent issues covered in the sub-series include the financial burden of the Jets on Winnipeg (and especially on tax-payers), plans to re-structure the organization and plans to sell the organization to various groups, the “Save the Jets” campaign, arguments for and against building a new sports arena in Winnipeg, arguments for and against trying to retain a professional sports team in Winnipeg, professional sports as an industry and the Thin Ice coalition. Ridd, it should be noted, believed that retaining the Jets was neither profitable nor fiscally responsible.

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