Book cover: Reclaiming Hamilton, edited by Paul Weinberg

Reclaiming Hamilton: Essays from the New Ambitious City

Paul Weinberg
  • $25.00

376 pages | ISBN 978-1-989496-00-8

City of Waterfalls, Steeltown, the Ambitious City – Hamilton, Ontario, has gone by many names over the years as it has risen to economic heights and fallen from them. In this wide-ranging collection of essays editor Paul Weinberg has gathered together some of Hamilton’s most tireless advocates to chart the rise of a new ambitious city. From examining the city’s long history of immigration to chronicling vanished working-class neighbourhoods, to citizen journalism, to art advocacy, to battles over expressways and light rail transit, and with a close look at gentrification and housing, Reclaiming Hamilton traces the fault lines that run through the city today. What these essays reveal is a remarkable city, one that is filled with rich history and present-day ingenuity, and one that is energized by citizens who never fail to fight for what they believe in.

Reviews | Interviews | Articles | Videos | Excerpt | About the Editor

List of Contributors

Freelance editor Kerry Le Clair, novelist Matthew Bin, McMaster professor Nancy Bouchier, journalist Joey Coleman, McMaster professor Ken Cruikshank, urban planner Rob Fiedler, Raise the Hammer editor Ryan McGreal, anthropologist Kevin McKay, culture journalist Seema Nerula, freelance writer Jessica Rose, community historian Shawn Selway, columnist Margaret Shkimba, immigration advocate and researcher Sarah Wayland and freelance writer Paul Weinberg.


Steeltown Redux: Mark Osbaldeston Reviews Paul Weinberg’s Reclaiming Hamilton: Essays from the New Ambitious City (Mark Osbaldeston, Hamilton Review of Books, 16/11/2020)
"Reading Reclaiming Hamilton, you come across a lot of different 're' words used to describe what has been happening for the last couple of decades in a city hard-hit by deindustrialization: 'renaissance,' 'revival,' and 'renewal' among them. But the 're' word of the title is different. It denotes action, results achieved by effort. And in these essays, the action in focus is decidedly not the effort of the powers-that-be."

Reclaiming Hamilton: A book review (Sean Hurley, The Point, 09/11/2020)
"An essay that touched me, personally, was by Kerry Le Clair who [...] details her own experience and personal interventions in a city that she has adopted as her own [...] She is trying to find her place here, to belong. In the end, she remains on the fence as to whether she does and that ambiguity will resonate with a lot of people who are new(ish) to the city."


A City on the Rise: Reflections from the contributors of Reclaiming Hamilton (Paul Weinberg, All Lit Up, 12/03/2021)
Paul asks some of the contributors to the collection about their thoughts on Hamilton and why they are compelled to write about the city.

E215 with JESSICA ROSE (Jamie Tennant, Get Lit, 31/12/2020)
Contributor Jessica Rose and Jamie Tennant discuss Reclaiming Hamilton.


Read Hamilton (Open Book, 27/11/2023)
A wonderful gathering of Hamilton books in one place, including this anthology.

Reclaiming Hamilton: Civic engagement and local activism in Steeltown (Karen Burson, rabble, 21/12/2020)
"Hard to put down and full of surprising facts and fresh perspectives on stories that I thought I already knew. 'This book is for you,' I imagined Weinberg's contributors telling me, 'and this city is for you, too.'"

Hamilton writers are out with new books to consider for holiday gifts — or just for yourself (Jeff Mahoney, Hamilton Spectator, 11/12/2020)
Paul's anthology is included in this round-up of Hamilton book for the holidays.

A city reinvents itself (Paul Weinberg, Hamilton Jewish News, October 2020)
Paul shares an excerpt from the introduction to Reclaiming Hamilton.



Read an excerpt from Reclaiming Hamilton.

About the Editor

Paul Weinberg is a veteran freelance journalist. He is also the author of When Poverty Mattered: Then and Now published in October 2019 by Fernwood. He currently lives in Hamilton, Ontario.

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