Toronto the Bad: A Riots Map and Timeline

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There has been over eighty riots throughout the history of Toronto, some of them quite large. This seemingly high number contradicts the idea of a peaceful and even dull “Toronto the Good,” and of Canada as a land of peace, order, and good governance, where differences have been negotiated through compromise, unlike our southern neighbours. Race, religion, political views, labour relations, social inequality, youth rebelliousness, have been the most common factors triggering these relatively short outburst of violence. In all of them, Toronto’s police forces have played a central role, as law and order enforcers, as violence instigators, or as passive bystanders. Toronto’s riot history is an important thread for weaving the story of its police forces, political rulers, inter-ethnic/racial relations, religious communities, and other significant historical agents.

In 2016-17, HIST4530 students wrote about various riots in Toronto’s past, drawing from primary (i.e. newspapers and maps) and secondary source materials. The assignment asked for them to write for a public history audience, which required them to write clearly and succinctly, and summarize complex ideas into simplified yet nuanced short texts. I have since edited and built on the students’ work, and created a digital map and timeline using Omeka/ Neatline, called Toronto the Bad: A Riots Map and Timeline.

Map screenshot

This assignment will be repeated in 2017-18. The incoming HIST4530 students’ work will feed into this digital resource, which remains a work in progress. This work is also featured in Myseum of Toronto‘s mobile application.

I am also currently working on an article about Toronto’s riot history.

Our 1st Lusophone Youth Summer Program at York University: a success!

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20170710_095758I had the privilege of co-organizing the York University’s Portuguese and Luso-Brazilian Program’s 1st Youth Summer Program, which took place throughout the week of July 10-14. This free week-long program for high students in the ages of 10-14 years old, provided students with a range of educational activities that mixed learning with recreation, as well as breakfast, lunch, snacks, and public transit fare. Besides introducing students to the Lusophone world, both global and local communities, it also allow them to experience university life. The program included a rich roster of presenters, who offered lectures, personal advice, and hands-on workshops on language, history, music, dance, theatre, painting, filming, archival research, digital media, and other fields. See here for an illustrated overview of the program.

Looking forward to doing it all over again next year.

“Summer of ’77”: thank you note.

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We had lots of news coverage, including Laura Fraser’s story on CBC.ca – today’s editors pick – and CBC Radio, with contributions from some of our panelists.

In case you missed our roundtable discussion last night, you can watch the live recording on the Gallery of the Portuguese Pioneers’ Facebook page (apologies for the technical difficulties). The audio recording of the presentations will be made available on ActiveHistory.ca at a later date.

Follow or contact the presenters Gilberto FernandesDaniel RossTom Hooper, and Valerie Scott for more information on their research and advocacy.

Community Conversation: The Summer of ’77: How Emanuel Jaques’ Murder Changed Toronto

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I have organized a York University Community Conversation on the murder of Emanuel Jaques in the summer of 1977, and the major impact it had in Toronto, particularly with Portuguese, LGBTQ, and sex worker communities. I will be one of the presenters in this public panel, alongside historians Daniel Ross and Tom Hooper, and sex worker and advocate Valerie Scott, and moderated by Maria João Dodman.

This event will take place on June 22, from 6pm to 8pm, at the Gallery of the Portuguese Pioneers (960 St. Clair Ave. West).

All are welcome!

poster

Digital map of Portuguese communities in Canada

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For the 64th anniversary of the arrival of the first group of Portuguese “bulk order” migrant workers on Pier 21, in Halifax, I have created a digital map with the current location of and statistics about the largest Portuguese immigrant, ethnic, and speaking communities in Canada. You can find it here.

map communities