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Robyn Schwarz - Western University. London, ON, CA

Robyn Schwarz

PhD Candidate in History | Western University

London, ON, CANADA

Providing historical context for issues relating to Canadian women, marriage/divorce law, welfare programs, motherhood and post-1945 Canada.






Robyn Schwarz, PhD candidate, History, Western University




Robyn is a PhD Candidate in the Department of History at Western University, where she researches and teaches Canadian history. Her areas of expertise include Canadian women's history and post-war Canada. Her dissertation examines single mothers in Ontario from 1945 to 1980, focusing on how different government institutions and social programs viewed single mothers as "problem women." She is currently completing archival research in local, provincial, and federal archives for this project. Some of the sources she examines include divorce case files, government records in the areas of health and social welfare, records from children's aid societies, maternity homes, and different religious groups. Robyn's research seeks to provide historical context for the inadequacies single mothers continue to face today in Canadian society.

Outside of her own research, she works as a feminist historian to promote greater understanding of a variety of women's issues. She organizes a monthly session for female graduate students and professors to get together and discuss different challenges facing women in higher education. She regularly speaks out on reproductive rights issues in Canada and the United States, particularly around abortion access. She is a member of the Reproductive Activism and Abortion Research Network.

Industry Expertise (3)



Writing and Editing

Areas of Expertise (9)

Canadian History

Women's History

Reproductive Rights


Welfare Policies

Divorce Law

Marriage & Family History

Political History


Education (3)

Western University: PhD, History

In Progress

Western University: Master of Arts, American Studies - Canadian American Relations 2013

University of British Columbia: Bachelor of Arts, Honours History, English 2012

Affiliations (4)

  • Canadian Historical Association
  • Canadian Committee on Women's History - Comité canadien de l'histoire des femmes
  • Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History
  • Reproductive Activism and Abortion Research Network

Languages (1)

  • English

Research Grants (1)

Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship

Social Science and Humanities Research Council $105,000


The Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship (CGS) Doctoral Scholarships aims to develop research skills and assist in the training of highly qualified personnel by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of scholarly achievement in undergraduate and graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities. This funding opportunity from the Canadian government aims to help train Canada’s researchers and leaders of tomorrow.

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