Turning Left to the Ladies

By Kate Braid

Turning Left to the Ladies
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In 1977 Kate Braid got her first job in construction as a labourer on a small island off the coast of British Columbia. Never in her wildest dreams did she plan to be a construction worker, much less a carpenter, but she was desperate to stay on the island and had run out of ... Read more


Overview

In 1977 Kate Braid got her first job in construction as a labourer on a small island off the coast of British Columbia. Never in her wildest dreams did she plan to be a construction worker, much less a carpenter, but she was desperate to stay on the island and had run out of money, along with all the options a woman usually has for work — secretary, waitress, receptionist. Turning Left to the Ladies is an autobiographical account of the fifteen years she worked as a labourer, apprentice and journey carpenter, building houses, high rises and bridges. She was the first female member of the Vancouver union local of the Carpenters and the first full-time woman teaching trades at the BC Institute of Technology. It is a wry, sometimes humorous, sometimes meditative look at one woman’s relationship to her craft, and the people she met along the way.

Kate Braid

Kate Braid has written, co-written, edited and co-edited fifteen books of non-fiction and prize-winning poetry that have been translated into Japanese, Spanish and French. Her most recent poetry books are ELEMENTAL, about the five elements including wood, and IN FINE FORM, the ground-breaking anthology of Canadian form poetry, co-edited with Sandy Shreve. After fifteen years as an apprentice, carpenter, contractor and construction instructor, and twelve years as a creative writing instructor, she now divides her time between Victoria and Pender Island, BC.

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