L.K. Bertram is a faculty member in the Department of History at the University of Toronto specializing in the delivery of critical historical data through social media algorithms and the history of migration, gender, sexuality, and colonialism in the 19th century North American West. She is the author of The Viking Immigrants: Icelandic North Americans (Winner CHA Clio Prize/ UTP 2020) and is currently finishing a book on the financial lives of sex workers in the 19th century West.
Bertram’s newest work focuses on how scholars can more effectively combat digital disinformation campaigns. As the anonymous curator of a large-scale public history campaign that hit 9 million views, she focuses on high-yield data packaging strategies for larger scale publics using video-based algorithms (TikTok and Instagram). This new SSHRC-funded project asks: “how do we make good data go viral in the disinformation age?” Follow the project on her new account @socialforscholars.
Bertram’s approach to teaching focuses on creating hands-on experiences for students that build insight and skills for advanced job markets and academic success. Classroom experiences include providing students with the opportunity to contribute to exhibitions and public history campaigns, artifact and rare book workshops, and the establishment of innovative research portfolios.
Courses offered vary each year but include:
HIS199 History and Social Media
HIS312 History of Immigration to Canada
HIS318 The “Wild” West in Canada
HIS358 The History of Canada in 100 Objects
HIS389 Queer Canadian History
HIS417 The Oldest Profession in Canada: Histories of Sex Work in Comparative Contexts
HIS1109 Readings in Canadian History
- 2022 SSHRC Insight Grant for “The Other Little House: The Brothel as a Colonial Institutions in the Canadian North West, 1880-1895” Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
- 2021 Clio Prize for The Viking Immigrants: Icelandic North Americans Toronto: University of Toronto Press
- 2020 Canadian Historical Association Best Article Award and CCMET Best Article Award for “‘Eskimo’ Immigrants and Colonial Soldiers: Icelandic Immigration and the North West Resistance” Canadian Historical Review 99.1
- “The Other Little House: The Brothel as a Colonial Institutions in the Canadian North West, 1880-1895” Journal of Social History 2022.
- “‘Eskimo’ Immigrants and Colonial Soldiers: Icelandic Immigration and the North West Resistance” Canadian Historical Review 2018.
- The Viking Immigrants: Icelandic North Americans (University of Toronto Press : 2020)
- “Brief History of a Complicated Sweater: Cultural Appropriation + Arctic Militarization in 20th Century Design, 1929 onwards” (Montreal: MQUP : 2020)
- “Icelandic Cake Fight: History of an Immigrant Recipe” ( : 2019)
Areas of Interest
Sex Work History; Social Media Algorithms; Public History; Digital Disinformation; Migration; Race and Colonialism; 19th-century North America; Western North America; Iceland; Museums; Material Culture; Gender and Sexuality.