Robert B. Perreault has worked as a research assistant/oral history interviewer, librarian/archivist, freelance writer, historical tour guide, public speaker, photographer, and conversational French teacher to promote Manchester's history and New England's Franco-American culture since 1973. His works of nonfiction and fiction, written in French, in English or in both languages, include seven books and more than 150 articles, essays, and short stories published in the US, Canada and France. Perreault holds an MA in French with specialization in New England Franco-American studies from Rhode Island College and an MFA in Creative Writing/Fiction from SNHU. In June 2012, Manchester's Centre Franco-American named him "Franco-American of the Year."
ContactRobert B. PerreaultManchester, NH firstname.lastname@example.orgHome phone: 603-668-5207
Available Program Formats: In person presentations only
Manchester is one example of the many industrial cities that attracted immigrants from Quebec in numbers large enough to warrant the creation and maintenance of an infrastructure of religious, educational, social, cultural, and commercial institutions that helped preserve this community's language and traditions. Robert Perreault shares stories about life in one of America's major Franco-American centers.
Grace DeRepentigny Metalious believed that in rejecting her own ethnic and religious heritage, she would come closer to inheriting the "American Dream." Her Quebecois ancestry and her formative years in Manchester reveal aspects of the author that the public rarely knew. Robert Perreault focuses on Metalious's most autobiographical and ethnically-oriented but little-known novel, No Adam in Eden.
Post cards have many a story to tell about the built landscape, disastrous events such as fires or floods, daily folk customs, and the identity of place. During the golden age of the post card, before telephones, personal messages could contain anything from the mundane, "Having a fine time, wish you were here..." to more profound reflections on family life or colorful portraits of towns and cities from the perspective of newly-landed immigrants. Robert Perreault presents vintage post cards of Manchester offer a lively, nostalgic adventure through a major industrial center, home to people from around the world.
Daily life for the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company's textile worker was not easy. Robert Perreault sheds light on how people from a variety of European countries as well as from French Canada made the transition from an agrarian to an industrial society and how that change affected families, cultures, the nature of work, and relationships among workers themselves.
New Hampshire Humanities programs are made possible in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this these programs do not necessarily represent those of the NEH or New Hampshire Humanities.