Working Class Public History


Students will participate in an ongoing research project on the post-industrial transformation of Pointe Saint-Charles, a working class neighbourhood adjoining the Lachine Canal with a long history of community mobilization. Using an existing archive of oral history interviews and photocopied documents, students enrolled in the class will collaboratively produce a deeply researched downloadable audio walk and an accompanying booklet (see the Lachine Canal audio walk at ). Additional interviewing, archival research and visual documentation will likely be required. For a brief overview of the neighbourhood’s history, visit the website of la Société d’histoire de Pointe-Saint-Charles at

Our work together this term is supported by a pedagogical grant from Concordia University for “The Right to the City: Cross-disciplinary pedagogy and the politics of Montreal’s South-West.” Part of this funding will be directed towards the rental of meeting space in Point St. Charles, which we will use in combination with the other two classes, as well as the employment of an overall coordinator as well as Phil Lichti, a sound artist with considerable experience building audio walks. He will work with us closely in the development of the audio walk. The course is also fortunate to have Dr Karoline Truchon, a post-doctoral fellow, who will provide ethnographic training and coordinate the ethnographic documentation of our process. We will also have the ongoing support of the Centre for Oral History and Digital Storytelling, which will provide us with equipment, space, and additional training. Additional funding came from a Social Science and Humanities Research Council grant for “From Balconville to Condoville: The Politics of Urban Change in Montreal.”