Photo of Janice Cavell

Janice Cavell

Adjunct Research Professor

Degrees:BA, PhD (Carleton)

Janice Cavell’s research interests include Arctic sovereignty, the cultural history of Arctic exploration (with an emphasis on nineteenth-century print culture) and the role of women in polar exploration.



Reassessing the Rogue Tory: Canadian Foreign Relations in the Diefenbaker Era (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018). Co-edited with Ryan Touhey. Contributions: Introduction and “The Spirit of ’56: The Suez Crisis, Anti-Americanism, and Diefenbaker’s 1957 and 1958 Election Victories”

Documents on Canadian External Relations: The Arctic, 1874–1949 (Ottawa: Global Affairs Canada, 2016)

Acts of Occupation: Canada and Arctic Sovereignty, 1918–25 (UBC Press, 2010). Co-authored with Jeff Noakes

Shortlisted for the Canadian Historical Association’s Political History Book Prize


Tracing the Connected Narrative: Arctic Exploration in British Print Culture, 1818–1860 (University of Toronto Press, 2008)


“Dividing the Northern World: The Arctic and the Alaska Purchase.” Diplomatic History 47, 2 (April 2023): 304–328

“Canada and the High Arctic Islands, 1880–1930.” In Peder Roberts and Adrian Howkins, eds., The Cambridge History of the Polar Regions, 325–353. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2023

“‘Consolidation and Control of All Eskimo Income’: The Motive for the 1953 High Arctic Relocation.” Journal of Canadian Studies 55, 1 (Winter 2021): 114–147

“The Sector Theory and the Canadian Arctic, 1897–1970.” International History Review 41, 6 (2019): 1168–1193 (online publication, May 2018)

“Who Discovered the Northwest Passage?” Arctic 71, 3 (September 2018): 292–308

“John Richardson’s ‘Missing’ Arctic Journal, 6–29 October 1821.” Polar Record 53, 6 (November 2017): 617–630 (online publication, February 2018)

“The Sea of Ice and the Icy Sea: The Arctic Frame of Frankenstein.” Arctic 70, 3 (September 2017): 295–307

“Canada’s Arctic Sector Claim in Historical Perspective: A Response to Alan MacEachern.” Polar Record 53, 2 (March 2017): 186–191 (online publication, November 2016)

“Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Robert Bartlett, and the Karluk Disaster: A Reassessment.” Journal of the Hakluyt Society (online only; published January 2017)

“The Polar Regions.” In Carl Thompson, ed., The Routledge Companion to Travel Writing, 425–434. London: Routledge, 2016

“Sector Claims and Counter-Claims: Joseph Elzéar Bernier, the Canadian Government, and Arctic Sovereignty, 1898–1934.” Polar Record 50, 254 (July 2014): 293–310 (online publication, July 2013)

“Publishing Sir John Franklin’s Fate: Cannibalism, Journalism, and the 1881 Edition of Leopold McClintock’s The Voyage of the ‘Fox’ in the Arctic Seas.” Book History 16 (2013): 155–184

“Making Books for Mr. Murray: The Case of William Edward Parry’s Third Arctic Narrative.” The Library: Transactions of the Bibliographical Society 7th series 14, 1 (March 2013): 45–9

“Miss Porden, Mrs. Franklin, and the Arctic Expeditions: Eleanor Anne Porden and the Construction of Arctic Heroism (1818–25).” In Frédéric Regard, ed., Arctic Exploration in the Nineteenth Century: Discovering the Northwest Passage, 79–94. London: Pickering and Chatto, 2013

“A Circumscribed Commemoration: Mrs. Rudolph Anderson and the Canadian Arctic Expedition Memorial.” Journal of the Canadian Historical Association ns 23, 1 (2012): 249–282

“‘A Little More Latitude’: Explorers, Politicians, and Canadian Arctic Policy during the Laurier Era.” Polar Record 47, 243 (October 2011): 289–309 (online publication, December 2010)

“Manliness in the Life and Posthumous Reputation of Robert Falcon Scott.” Canadian Journal of History 45, 3 (Winter 2010): 537–564

“Lady Lucy Barry and Evangelical Reading on the First Franklin Expedition.” Arctic 63, 2 (June 2010): 131–140

“The True Northwest Passage: Explorers in Anglo-Canadian Nationalist Narratives.” Northern Review 32 (Spring 2010): 5–34

“Explorer Without a Country: The Question of Vilhjalmur Stefansson’s Citizenship.” Polar Record 45, 234 (July 2009): 237–241 (co-author with Jeff Noakes)

“Canadiana Abroad: The Department of External Affairs’ Book Presentation Programmes, 1949–1963.” American Review of Canadian Studies 39, 2 (June 2009): 81–93

“The Origins of Canada’s First Eastern Arctic Patrol, 1919–1922.” Polar Record 45, 233 (April 2009): 97–112 (co-author with Jeff Noakes)

“Going Native in the North: Reconsidering British Attitudes during the Franklin Search, 1848–1859.” Polar Record 45, 232 (January 2009): 25–35

“Historical Evidence and the Eastern Greenland Case.” Arctic 61, 4 (December 2008): 433–441

“In the Margins: Regimental History and a Veteran’s Narrative of the First World War.” Book History 11 (2008): 199–219

“‘Like Any Good Wife’: Gender and Perceptions of Canadian Foreign Policy, 1945–1975.” International Journal 63, 2 (Spring 2008): 385–403

“Representing Akaitcho: European Vision and Revision in the Writing of John Franklin’s Narrative of a Journey to the Shores of the Polar Sea.” Polar Record 44, 228 (January 2008): 25–34

“Suez and After: Canada and British Policy in the Middle East, 1956–1960.” Journal of the Canadian Historical Association ns 18, 1 (2007): 157–178

“The Hidden Crime of Dr. Richardson.” Polar Record 43, 225 (April 2007): 155–164

“Comparing Mythologies: Twentieth-Century Canadian Constructions of Sir John Franklin.” In Norman Hillmer and Adam Chapnick, eds., Canadas of the Mind: The Making and Unmaking of Canadian Nationalisms in the Twentieth Century, 15–45. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2007

“Arctic Exploration in Canadian Print Culture, 1890–1930.” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada 44, 2 (Fall 2006): 7–43

 “The Imperial Race and the Immigration Sieve: The Canadian Debate on Assisted British Migration and Empire Settlement, 1900–1930.” Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History 34, 3 (September 2006): 345–367

“The Second Frontier: The North in English-Canadian Historical Writing.” Canadian Historical Review 83, 3 (September 2002): 364–389

Research Notes

“Further Evidence and Reflections on Joseph Elzéar Bernier’s 1907 and 1909 Sovereignty Claims.” Polar Record 49, 251 (October 2013): 406–408 (online publication, March 2012)

“‘As Far as 90 North’: Joseph Elzéar Bernier’s 1907 and 1909 Sovereignty Claims.” Polar

Record 46, 239 (October 2010): 372–373 (online publication, February 2010)

Selected Book Reviews

Review of Andrew Stuhl, Unfreezing the Arctic: Science, Colonialism, and the Transformation of Inuit Lands. American Historical Review 124, 3 (June 2019): 1056–1057

Review of Ken McGoogan, Dead Reckoning: The Untold Story of the Northwest Passage. Globe and Mail, 28 October 2017, R10

Review of Adriana Craciun, Writing Arctic Disaster: Authorship and Exploration. Journal of Historical Geography 57 (May 2017): 108–109

Review of Gordon W. Smith, A Historical and Legal Study of Sovereignty in the Canadian North: Terrestrial Sovereignty, 1870–1939. Polar Research 34, (online only; published September 2015)

Review of P. Whitney Lackenbauer, The Canadian Rangers: A Living History. Canadian Historical Review 95, 2 (June 2014): 297–299

Review of Marjolaine Saint-Pierre, Joseph-Elzéar Bernier: Champion of Canadian Arctic Sovereignty, 1852–1934. Polar Record 47, 240 (January 2011): 91–92 (online publication, February 2010)

Other Publications

“Arctic Atlantis.” Canada’s History 100, 1(February/March 2020): 20–27

“Sir John Franklin.” Dictionary of Canadian Biography (online only; published July 2019)

Honours and Awards

2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal