SEP 20, 12:00-14:00 (online) 

The Dangers of Everyday Oral History Interviewing: Building and Breaking Trust in the Field, with Stacey Zembrzycki. In English. 

What is intimacy in an oral history context? Does an oral history interview constitute and/or make for an intimate encounter? How do projects—the questions we ask and the stories we hear—contribute to intimacy? Does gender impact intimacy? And does intimacy lead to dangerous intimate encounters in the field? If so, how should intimacy play a role in the ethical processes that guide our research? In order to delve deeply into these questions, I will share some of my fieldwork experiences on my SSHRC-funded project Mining Immigrant Bodies: A Multi-Ethnic Oral History of Industry, Environment and Health in the Sudbury Region. In particular, I will outline how the recruitment methods I employed and the ways in which I built research relationships led to four “intimate” and somewhat problematic encounters I had while conducting interviews about health, and, to a degree, personal trauma. Although these encounters were not interrelated, they build on each other in important ways, highlighting how loneliness and intimacy can create the perfect conditions for fostering dangerous interview settings that have the potential to silence and even harm researchers. Is it safe to interview strangers? Is there a danger of becoming too comfortable? Are these dangers more of a problem for women, than for men? Should standard protocol require us to interview in pairs? Does assault happen more often than we care to admit? Ethics review boards ask us to consider the harm we can do to our narrators, but this paper ponders the harm, in everyday encounters, that narrators can do to us as researchers. 

Stacey Zembrzycki teaches in the History and Classics Department at Dawson College in Montreal, Quebec. An award-winning oral and public historian of ethnic, immigrant, and refugee experience, she is the author of According to Baba: A Collaborative Oral History of Sudbury’s Ukrainian Community (UBC Press, 2014) and its accompanying website:, and is co-editor of Oral History Off the Record: Toward an Ethnography of Practice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) and Beyond Women’s Words: Feminisms and the Practices of Oral History in the Twenty-First Century (Routledge, 2018). 


SEP 22, 17:00-19:00 (online) 

Beirut, one year after the blast. Moderated by Zeina Ismail-Allouche and Emma Haraké. In Arabic, English and French.  

مضت سنة على تفجير بيروت ونحن ما زلنا نئن ألماً من وطأة الصدمة. كثير من القصص رويت ولا يزال الحزن ثقيلاً. كيف عشنا تفجير بيروت نحن اللبنانيينات المقيمينات في كندا؟ هل نجونا؟ كيف نعيش ازدواجيتنا ما بين امتياز الغربة وحرقة الشوق إلى مدينة متجذرة في ذاكرتنا وقلوبنا؟
.هل أصبحنا هؤلاء المغتربين والمغتربات كما يفترض بنا أن نكون؟ انضموا إلينا في أمسية نتشارك فيها جانبنا المكتوم من رواية تفجير بيروت… حكاياتنا عن النجاة المزعومة، عن البعد والقرب، عن الطرد وعن التصاقنا المزمن
نرحب بالجميع لمشاركة المشاعر والأفكار والتطلعات باستعمال طرق تعبير مختلفة من سرد وقصائد وموسيقى وصور وأفلام، على ألا تتجاوز مداخلتكم ٥-٧ دقائق
: للتسجيل وإدراجكم بالبرنامج، يرجى تعبئة هذا النموذج قبل الخميس ١٦ أيلول
: سيقام هذا الحدث على منصة زوم وهو مجاني ومفتوح للجميع. يمكنكم الحصول على رابط الحضور عند التسجيل هنا

One year after the blast, we are still in pain and shock. Many stories were shared, and voices were heard. The grief is still heavy.
How do we, the people from Lebanon living in Canada, experience the Blast? Did we survive? How do we navigate the tension between our privilege of being away and our longing to reconnect with the city that is rooted in our minds and hearts? Did we become the expatriates that we are supposed to be?
Join us for an evening of sharing to unfold our narratives and recount our side of survival, away and close, expelled and connected, denied, and legitimized.

All are welcome to share feelings, thoughts, and aspirations. Monologues, poems, music, spoken word, etc. are all welcome. (Must be 5-7 mins in length).
To reserve your reading slot, please fill this form by Thursday, September 16th:

This event will take place on the Zoom platform and is free and open for all. You can get the access link when you register here:…/tZ0pfu….

Beyrouth : un an après l’explosion, avec Zeina Ismail-Allouche

Un an après l’explosion, nous vivons encore dans la douleur, sous le choc. Beaucoup d’histoires ont été partagées et beaucoup de voix, écoutées. Le deuil pèse toujours.
Comment nous, Libanais et Libanaises installés au Canada, vivons-nous l’Explosion? Y avons-nous survécu? Comment trouver un équilibre quand nous sommes déchirés entre notre privilège d’être loin et notre désir de reconnecter avec cette ville ancrée dans nos esprits et nos cœurs? Sommes-nous devenus les expatriés que nous sommes censés être?
Soyez des nôtres pour une soirée de partage où nous dévoilerons nos récits et parlerons de survie de notre point de vue : loin et proches, exclus et connectés, rejetés et légitimisés.

Toutes et tous sont invités à parler de leurs sentiments, pensées et aspirations. Monologues, poèmes, musique, création parlée… choisissez votre forme d’expression (durée : de 5 à 7 minutes).
Pour réserver un créneau de lecture, veuillez remplir ce formulaire d’ici le jeudi 16 septembre :

L’activité se déroulera sur la plateforme Zoom. L’entrée est libre et ouverte à tous et à toutes. Vous obtiendrez le lien d’accès après votre inscription ici :…/tZ0pfu…. 


SEP 28, 14:00-16:00 (online) 

The Goose Village Project: Photography, Research-Creation, and Oral History, with Marisa Portolese. Moderated by Dr Cynthia Hammond. In English. 

Marisa Portolese is Canadian-Italian and was born in Montreal, Quebec. She is an Associate Professor in the Photography Program in the Faculty of Fine Arts, at Concordia University. Portraiture, representations of women, narrative, autobiography, the figure in nature, cultural heritage and immigration are major and recurrent subjects in her practice. She often produces large-scale color photographs, rich in painterly references that concentrate on elucidating facets of human experiences in relation to psychological and physical environments, relating to larger themes concerning identity and spectatorship. She attempts to weave together gesture, affect, and the nuances of the gaze, to create an immersive and emotional landscape for the viewer. Her current research focuses on the cultural legacy of the Goose Village and how the hallmark event of Expo 67 caused the demolition of this working-class neighbourhood and displaced an entire community mostly made up Irish and Italian immigrants that included her parents.  

Dr Cynthia Hammond is Professor of Art History at Concordia University and a core affiliate of COHDS. She is a practicing artist and scholar, whose research and creation emphasize living memories and situated knowledge of the city, especially the knowledge of women and older citizens. She is presently leading a three-year Partnership Development Grant project titled “La ville extraordinaire: Learning from older Montrealers’ urban knowledge through oral history research-creation.”  



OCT 4, 10:00-12:00 (in person) 

Intro To Sound Recording, with Vitalyi Bulychev. In English. 

Best practice and basics of working with microphones and recorders. 

Limited spaces. Registration will open September 8th. 

OCT 4, 14:00-15:30 (online) 

Intro To Sound Recording, with Vitalyi Bulychev. In English. 

Best practice and basics of working with microphones and recorders. 

Limited spaces. Registration will open September 8th. 

OCT 6, 11:00-14:00 (online, in person) 

COHDS Annual General Assembly | Assemblée générale annuelle du CHORN 

Keynote TBC 



OCT 14, 12:00-14:00 (in person) 

Atelier : Introduction à l’histoire orale avec Lea Kabiljo. En français. 

Registration required. Limited spaces. RSVP:


OCT 18, 10:00-12:00 (Online) 

Intro to Sound Editing I With Adobe Audition, with Vitalyi Bulychev. In English. 

Processing, editing and enhancing your audio recording – an introduction to Adobe Audition.  

(Recommended to have the software installed before the workshop.) 

 Limited spaces. Registration will open September 8th. 

OCT 22, 9:00-16:00 (online) 

Indigenous Healing Knowledges Online Gathering.  

Learning from Indigenous Healers 9am-12pm 

Youth Exploration of Indigenous Healing Knowledges 1-4pm   

Come join us for an online gathering, as we get to hear from various elders, knowledge keepers and youth on their experiences and approaches to healing.  



OCT 25, 10:00-12:00 (Online) 

Intro to Sound Editing II With Adobe Audition, with Vitalyi Bulychev. In English. 

Processing, editing and enhancing your audio recording – an introduction to Adobe Audition.  

(Recommended to have the software installed before the workshop.) 

Limited spaces. Registration will open September 8th. 

NOV 8, 12:00-2:00 (online) 

Workshop: Oral History Theory and Ethic, with Steven High. In English.  



NOV 18, 13:00-15:00 (online) 

Purity and Pitfalls: Ethical Issues in Multiplatform Storytelling Using Oral Histories, with Alicia Aroche. In English. 

This presentation will discuss some ethical challenges and opportunities in the use of oral histories in multiplatform storytelling. Promoting equity and agency of marginalized community members; examining ethical considerations of community embedding; and strengthening collaborative partnerships on such projects will be explored. 

Alicia Aroche considers herself a maker, blending oral history, film making, visual arts and public health research. She is interested in creating narratives that spur advocacy and action for equity and justice for marginalized groups.  

Alicia launched her filmmaking career in the 2000s, earning a fellowship to the Hurston Wright Foundation Residency, a platform drawing published and unpublished writers globally from across the African Diaspora.  During the residency, her work caught the attention of Emmy-Award Winning writer and producer David Mills (“The Corner,” “NYPD Blue,” “The Wire”).  Soon after, she landed a position as story analyst with Emmy-nominated actor Tim Reid (“WKRP in Cincinnati,” “The Richard Pryor Show” “Sister, Sister” and “That 70’s Show”) as part of his production company.  

In 2016, the film she produced, wrote, and directed, “Empty Chair,” based on oral history interviews with survivors of human trafficking, was recognized at the New York Short Film Festival in Williamsburg, and the Atlanta Underground Film Festival, where it won best animated short.  

She is currently promoting the film anthology, “Sunlight Around the Corner,” an award-winning film series she conceptualized, along with community members, based on an oral history project. The anthology has been screened and accepted into seven film festivals globally, including an Academy Award Qualifying Festival in the United States. This series of five distinct short films uses various methods and modes, including expository, poetic and essay, based on the stories of community health workers and advocates recounting the punitive impacts and criminalization of poverty and addiction and despite this, the triumphs along this journey.  

Alicia holds a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications and a master’s degree in Education, with a focus on Action and Participatory Research. She has continued studies in film and photography at the University College London, and Escuela de Creativa Fotografía de la Habana in Cuba. Alicia resides in the USA in Virginia.


NOV 25, 12:00-14:00 (in person) 

Conversation: Ethics as a quest, with Dr. Catherine Richardson and Zeina Ismail-Allouche. In English. 

This is an open and non-formal conversation between Dr. Catherine Richardson and Zeina Ismail-Allouche that unsettles the concept of shared authority as a guaranteed pathway towards an ethical approach. The session will take the form of a sharing circle that invites participants to unpack their understanding of ethics while addressing representation and contextualization as proposed main constructs to ethics. We will address Indigenous Methodologies as a relational egalitarian approach that extends the concept of shared authority to include the world views, the choice of the research question, and the positionality of the researcher vis-vis the research question.  

 Limited spaces. RSVP: