Our University of the Streets Café public conversations are much like any you’d have with friends or family around a dinner table, except with more people, more points of view, and slightly more structure. Conversations are hosted by a volunteer moderator who is there to welcome everyone and keep things on track. To get things started, there’s a guest, or sometimes two, who get the ball rolling by sharing their ideas, experiences and questions. After that, it’s all up to the participants.
What is our relationship to home when we can no longer return to it? This is the increasing reality for individuals who are tragically displaced following armed conflict and environmental tragedies. How do we begin the process of rebuilding home and community? What are the personal stories of refugees and immigrants abruptly finding themselves in a new urban context? How can host communities welcome newcomers who come with their own needs and potential contributions to a shared landscape? What can we learn from the past, as we venture across physical and cultural divides?
Hourig Attarian is Assistant Professor in the Department of Education, Concordia University and a core member of the university’s Centre for Oral History and Digital Storytelling (COHDS). She has obtained her PhD from the Faculty of Education, McGill University. Anchored in the blurred genre of life history and autobiographical inquiry, her work focuses on storying memory and identity through visual and narrative explorations.
Myriam Zaidi is an activist who works at the national feminist organization Girls Action. She has been involved in social justice work in Montreal for over 10 years. She considers herself to be an organizer more than anything else-from social movements to the workplace, she is always looking for ways to make spaces (big or small) more liberating. She is also a researcher in the field of social movement learning, feminist anti-racist pedagogies, and popular education.
Accessibility info: Les Deux Marie is on the ground floor. Washrooms are on the main floor. The women’s washroom includes a wheelchair accessible stall equipped with a grab bar.