Last September, I started a new research and public history project called City Builders: An Oral History of Immigrant Construction Workers in Postwar Toronto, associated with York University’s Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies and the Laborers International Union of North America Local 183. This project will record, examine, and divulge the history of Toronto’s immigrant construction workers after the Second World War. It will do so by gathering extensive qualitative information through filmed oral history interviews, by photographing the participants’ personal records and artifacts, and by conducting extensive research in Toronto’s archives. I will be leading a team of researchers (including York students) and filmmakers, who will interview forty retired members of Local 183, focusing on their goals, struggles, achievements, and thoughts on immigration, construction work, labour organization, Toronto, and other topics of significance. With these materials, we will produce forty short videos and one 15-minute documentary that will be featured in a multimedia exhibition. The exhibit’s launch and the screening of the documentary will coincide with the 2018 Avie Bennett Conference at York University, taking place on September 2018. All of the materials gathered and produced by this project will be donated to the Clara Thomas Archives and Special Collections, York University Libraries, once the project is completed.
Follow this link to watch a York University (Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections) promotional video that I have contributed to.
The book Identity Palimpsests: Archiving Ethnicity in the U.S. and Canada, edited by Dominique Daniel and Amalia Levi, was published this month by Litwin Press. This edited volume contains a chapter written by myself and the rest of the PCHP team (Raphael Costa, Emanuel da Silva, Susana Miranda, Anna St. Onge), titled “Archiving ‘From Below’: Preserving, Problematizing and Democratizing the Collective Memory of Portuguese Canadians – the Portuguese Canadian History Project”.
See here for the publishers description.