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2014-01 Montreal Life Stories Project Fonds


“Life Stories of Montrealers Displaced by War, Genocide, and Other Human Rights Violations” is an oral history project exploring Montrealers’ experiences and memories of mass violence and displacement. A team of both university and community-based researchers recorded life-story interviews with nearly 500 Montreal residents over the course of five years. Interviews were conducted using the life story method. 

This fonds consists of 8 series with 448 different files. Contact us for more detailed information.

Life Stories in Education Working Group (2014-01-001) -- 87 interviews in English and French

The Life Stories in Education Working Group sought to educate youth, teachers, and the broader community about human rights, genocide, war, and displacement through life stories. The group explored the impact life stories have on the intellectual and ethical development of learners and educators in a variety of formal and informal contexts. 

Holocaust and Other Persecutions Against Jews Working Group (2014-01-002) -- 80 interviews in English, French, and Yiddish

The Holocaust and Other Persecutions Against Jews Working Group collected stories with Holocaust survivors, descendants of Holocaust survivors, and Montrealers of Sephradic origin impacted by the Holocaust and post-Holocaust events in North Africa. 

Cambodia Working Group (2014-01-003) -- 75 interviews in English, French, and Khmer

The Cambodian Working Group collected the stories of Cambodians living in Montreal. Of special significance to this working group was the transmission of knowledge from one generation to the next, and the communication between Montrealers and Canadians of Cambodian and other origins. 

Haiti Working Group (2014-01-004) -- 19 interviews in English and French

The Haitian Working Group examined the relationship between state violence experienced during the Duvalier regime and the displacement of Haitian refugees to Montreal. These interviews discuss what led individuals to leave their country and what attracted them to Montreal. Although violence has characterised Haitian society since its birth as a nation, the Duvalier period (1957 - 1994) was privileged in this sutdy because it is this regime, in its totalitarian and systematic perpetration of violence, that resulted in massive Haitian emigration to Canadian soil. 

Oral History and Performance Working Group (2014-01-005) -- 55 interviews in English, Spanish, and French

The Oral History and Performance Working Group drew inspiration from participatory action methodologies to involve participants in socially engaged and self-revelatory performances by, for, and about their respective communities. The Working Group guided the creation of performance projects in collaboration with community groups, the publication of research about the process of creating performances based on oral history, and the development of ethical, aesthetic, and methodological guidelines. The Working Group collected life stories of artists living in Montreal because they were displaced from their places of origin by mass violence. 

The Oral History and Perfomance Working Group also completed a series of Radioworks interviews. Through collaboration with CKUT Radio, Radioworks! produced short interviews with individuals on projects related to memory, history, identity, and life stories. Descriptions of the interviews can be found here.

Rwanda Working Group (2014-01-006) -- 87 interviews in English, French, and Kinyarwanda

The life stories of Rwandan survivors living in Montreal were recorded through interviews with people from different age groups. The group ensured that 20 to 25 percent of those interviewed were young people between the ages of 18 and 30. Recruitment of interviewees took place through a variety of means. Two Life Stories partners, the Association of Parents and Friends of Genocide Victims in Rwanda (PAGE-Rwanda) and Isangano (Rwandan cultural group) were main organizers of the outreach process. 

Experiences of Refugee Youth in Montreal Working Group (2014-01-007) -- 25 interviews in English and French

Experiences of Refugee Youth in Montreal was a collaborative media project that used personal stories and a range of media tools (video, sound walks, mapping, photograph) to better understand the experiences of youth with the refugee experience in Montreal. Using participatory methods, their objective was the produce creative work that would have an impact on policy, education, art, and on the lives of the youth involved. The working group also produced an accompanying book, Mapping Memories, available at the COHDS lab. 

Events and Activities (2014-01-008) 

This series consists of video and audio-recorded seminars, training sessions, round tables, and other events held in relation with the Life Stories of Montrealers Displaced by Genocide and Other Human Rights Violations Project.


Concordia University