York University Libraries | Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections online exhibits

The Jean Augustine Political Button Collection

What we collect tells a story. The objects we collect tell stories and the collector of the artifacts can tell a story. Political buttons are ephemeral artifacts created for a specific purpose and usually for a short-time period. Their function may include commemorating an event or conveying one’s support of a cause, movement or political candidate.

This exhibit explores some of the narratives behind selected political buttons from the Jean Augustine collection housed in the Clara Thomas Archives and Special Collections at York University. The Honourable Jean Augustine, originally from Grenada, was the first African-Canadian woman elected as a Member of Parliament in Canada. There are over 500 political and social activism buttons collected by Jean Augustine from the 1960s to the early 2000s.  These political buttons are great tools to understand the socio-political history of Canadian society.  Jean Augustine was interviewed about selected political and activism buttons found in her collection on April 24, 2014. Several themes explored in the exhibit include:

 Hear the stories of Jean Augustine’s political button collection.

Credits

Created by Norda Majekodunmi (nordam@yorku.ca)