New Star Blogs

Mudflat Dreaming: Vancouver events in April


Join author Jean Wal­ton at three excit­ing events this month when the author returns to Van­cou­ver to dis­cuss Mud­flat Dream­ing .

“I look for­ward to talk­ing about what it means to live “in suspension”-—that is, sus­pend­ed above the tidal waters, but also “in sus­pen­sion” about whether you will be evict­ed from your home,” Wal­ton remarks. “This is some­thing that I think con­tin­ues to haunt Van­cou­ver today.”

The book, which tra­vers­es the inter­sect­ing domains of activist and doc­u­men­tary film, water­front envi­ron­men­tal­ism, as well as urban land use, was recent­ly reviewed by BC Stud­ies, a snip­pet of which appears below:

It’s appro­pri­ate that a book about a city often referred to as “Hol­ly­wood North” should ground itself in close read­ings of film and the visu­al sig­na­tures of place they con­tain. Two of these films, Livin’ On the Mud and Mud­flats Liv­ing, were made to doc­u­ment the lives of inhab­i­tants of the Maple­wood Mud­flats. The oth­er film, Some Peo­ple Have to Suf­fer, doc­u­ments the griev­ances of the work­ing-class res­i­dents of Bridgeview and their prob­lems access­ing ser­vices and infra­struc­ture. This lat­ter film was a prod­uct of a fas­ci­nat­ing Nation­al Film Board pro­gram, “Chal­lenge for Change,” an ini­tia­tive that empow­ered under­rep­re­sent­ed com­mu­ni­ties to pro­duce films—a gov­ern­ment-spon­sored for­ay into media activism. Though blue col­lar sub­urbs and float­ing coun­ter­cul­ture vil­lages may seem dis­sim­i­lar, Wal­ton shows how they shared more than one might expect, emerg­ing through the same his­tor­i­cal process­es and social and geo­graph­ic con­text.”


Thurs­day, April 25, 7:30p.m. Van­cou­ver His­tor­i­cal Soci­ety (110 Ches­nut Street, Van­cou­ver)

“Water­front Bat­tles and the Squat­ters who Fought Them in 1970s Van­cou­ver”
All lec­ture events are free (admis­sion by dona­tion), open to the pub­lic, and take place at the Muse­um of Van­cou­ver, 1100 Chest­nut Street

Fri­day, April 26, 2:00 p.m. Sur­rey City Cen­tre Library, 10350 Uni­ver­si­ty Dri­ve. (Room 405) “Some Peo­ple Had to Suf­fer: River­front Activism ‘Down on the Flats’ in 1970s Sur­rey”

 Jean Wal­ton reads from Mud­flat Dream­ing: Water­front Bat­tles and the Squat­ters who Fought Them in 1970s Van­cou­ver (New Star Books, 2018). This book tells the sto­ry of hip­pie squat­ters on the North Shore of Van­cou­ver and work­ing class res­i­dents in Surrey’s river­side neigh­bor­hood of Bridgeview who came to feel like “squat­ters,” always on the verge of evic­tion. This read­ing will focus on sub­ur­ban land use on a volatile flood plain, wel­fare and youth pro­grams, NFB film activism, and Scrap­yard Art in Sur­rey of the 1970s. 

Sat­ur­day, April 27, 7:30p.m.People’s Co-op Book­store, 1391 Com­mer­cial Dri­ve, Van­cou­ver, B.C. Join Jean Wal­ton for a read­ing and book sign­ing.

Mud­flat Dream­ing: Water­front Bat­tles and the Squat­ters Who Fought Them in 1970s Van­cou­ver by Jean Wal­ton (Trans­mon­tanus, 204 pages, ISBN: 9781554201495).

Lis­ten to Jean Wal­ton dis­cuss her new book on The Com­men­tary