It’s hard to wait two weeks between these interviews, and I’ve been especially impatient to share Amanda Wood’s story with you all. Amanda shares her experiences growing up multi-racial and multi-cultural in the Okanagan, and how she navigated her identity over the years as she attempted to find her place personally and in her community. Amanda is a textile artist living, and working, in Vancouver, B.C. with her husband and two children. She is passionate about sharing art-making with others, and as a teaching artist with kids and adults, she works on making a creative space for all kinds of learners. Her work has been shown across Canada, and has also appeared in Uppercase Magazine and in the book Strange Material: Storytelling Through Textiles. Say hello to Amanda, and don’t be shy to chat in the comments!
I am delighted to officially begin the Personal History series with Larissa Gessner. Larissa was one of the first women to contact me when I put out the call for submissions, and it was clear from the start that she was basically a dream interviewee – warm, funny, prompt, and detailed! Her enthusiasm is infectious in the best way possible.
Larissa arrived in Texas from São Paulo, Brazil when she was five years old – just a few years later, her family moved again to Canada, where she lives today. Larissa shares her experiences as an immigrant to North America with humour and thoughtful observations on the differences between Brazilian and Canadian culture as she grew up. Say hello to Larissa, and don’t be shy about sharing your own thoughts in the comments (and/or send me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in sharing your own story with us).
“Stories matter. Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity…When we reject the single story, when we realize that there is never a single story about any place, we regain a kind of paradise.”
– Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi (The Danger of a Single Story)
There is always room for more stories. In particular, I feel that we need to make even more room for diverse stories. I am extremely proud to announce the start of my new series for Peaks & Harbours, Personal Histories. On the third Tuesday of each month, women from around the globe will be generously sharing their personal stories with you. I am overjoyed at the response from everyone, and those that continue to contact me. The ability to share stories on this platform that are multi-cultural, multi-racial, and diverse in experience is incredibly meaningful for me, and I hope for you too.