A heartfelt thank you to everyone who came out to my book launch. I am honoured and delighted that I got to share this milestone with so many old and new friends. I look forward to hearing everyone’s thoughts on the book. Here are some photos taken by Gilberto Prioste. A couple of his photos are featured in the book.
I’m launching my book This Pilgrim Nation on Wednesday, January 15, starting at 7am, at the Supermarket Bar on 268 Augusta Avenue, Kensington Market. The event will feature a brief performance by the Portuguese guitar maker and player Nuno Cristo, a conversation between myself and Dr. Susana Miranda, and a reading from the book. Refreshments will be provided. See here for more information: https://www.facebook.com/events/500665777202899/
Episode 3, titled “New Heights,” focuses on the introduction of new building techniques and materials (i.e. concrete forming, flying form and drywall) in Toronto in the 1960s and how they disrupted the industry, especially its unions. It examines the controversial organization of concrete forming workers and the intense battles between international and national unions. This episode features interviews with the former labour organizers and construction workers John Stefanini, Marino Toppan, Quinto Ceolin, Rocco Lotito, and Angelo Zaccaria.
Episode 4, titled “New Lows,” focuses on the infiltration of organized crime and the multiple episodes of violence in Toronto’s construction industry in the 1960s-70s, leading up to the Royal Commission on Certain Sectors of the Building Industry (1973-4). This episode features interviews with journalist and author Catherine Wismer and the former Local 183 business manager John Stefanini.
Also available are nine new oral history videos featuring the retired construction workers, union organizers, and community advocates António Filipe, Carlos Botelho, Gunter Hartleb, John Ferreira, Mamadou Bah, Norm Pike’s family, Pasquale Cerra, Quinto Ceolin, and Rosemarie Powell.
My first book This Pilgrim Nation: the Making of the Portuguese Diaspora in Postwar North America is coming out this Winter with the University of Toronto Press. The official publication date is December 9, 2019; just in time for Christmas. But you can pre-order your copy now at a 25% discount on the University of Toronto Press’ website: https://utorontopress.com/us/this-pilgrim-nation-2 Details about the book launch coming soon.