Dora NippCanada’s diverse voices

Published in 2004clockTime to read: 40s
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Dora Nipp’s extensive oral history interviews documenting the lives and experiences of Canada’s immigrants celebrate their ethnic diversity and explore the contribution they have made to their new homeland.

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Dora Nipp wants her fellow Canadians to remember and treasure their past, particularly the wide ethnic diversity of the nation’s immigrants. She set out to preserve a collection of oral history interviews with immigrants, recording the joys and hardships of their journeys to, and lives in, Canada. She helped establish a museum in Toronto where visitors can listen to these recordings. As Chief Executive Officer of the Multicultural History Society of Ontario, she expanded the organization’s acquisitions and its volunteer initiatives exponentially. In the past few years, 300-plus volunteers have engaged with more than 500 oral history testimonies, producing, editing and annotating interview transcripts, and researching and writing biographical notes on narrators. In total, the Society has more than 9,000 hours of oral testimonies and 84,000 photographs – gathered from members of 60 ethnic groups now living in Canada.

The more we celebrate these stories, the better equipped we are to confront discrimination today.

In 2017, Nipp and the Society will be involved in Canada’s sesquicentennial celebrations, marking the 150th anniversary of the Confederation, using the archival collections and primary source material to highlight the country’s ethnic diversity and its debt to immigration.

  • 9,000

    Hours of interviews recorded by the Multicultural History Society of Ontario

  • 500

    Oral history testimonies recorded by the Society

  • 60

    Ethnic groups whose members have recorded interviews

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