As a historian, what time-period does your research cover?
My research goes all the way back to the 17th Century, to Samuel Champlain, but there’s no one specific era. One of my specialist areas includes slavery, the slavery in Quebec particularly. There are a lot of researchers doing work on this in Ontario, but not in Quebec so in that regard I am probably unique. There’s also my work on the early formation of community, so that would be the first 30 or 40 years of the 20th century, and most of my research goes up to the Sir Georges Williams Affair in 1969 when the riots took place.
I also did a presentation last year about the Press that came out of this event, at a conference called Writing Blackness at McGill University. The Sir Georges Williams Affair created a rupture within the Black community and one of the ways that the community responded was to create a new Black Press, with several papers being published as a result of this event. I had tracked this movement as a part of my doctoral dissertation, so I have a significant amount of expertise in the area and material to bring together for the McGill presentation.
I think people are more interested in the lived experiences of history, and that’s something that I try to bring out in my work.