"We came to Canada and we were going to make it": oral history, agency, and post-Second World War Dutch immigrant children and adolescents in Alberta

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Toth, Elaine
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Department of History
This project reconceptualizes the immigrant child in a way that underscores their experience as distinct from that of an adult. There is little qualitative research on the histories of Dutch child immigrants and the findings in this thesis draw attention to and help fill this gap. By highlighting the life stories of school-aged Dutch children in southern Alberta and focusing on the complexities they faced during integration, there is opportunity to rethink what has been documented about their roles in the family migration process. This thesis shows how post-Second World War child immigrant memories are worthy of exploration as they serve to enrich our understanding of how children exercised agency and demonstrated independent thought while adjusting to unfamiliar cultural and social practices.
Dutch immigrants , immigrant child life stories , immigrant integration , post-World War II , school aged immigrant children , southern Alberta