Episode 2 - The Generational Cappuccino

Season 1, Ep. 2

In this episode, Greg is joined by his daughter, Talar, to explore how different generations of Canadians identify with both their homeland and hostland. This episode dives into what it means to have different layers of identity and how one's identity may be diluted with more milk, or strengthened by more coffee over generations.  

To learn more about the themes presented in this episode, refer to these papers from Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies

  • Chryssanthopoulou, V. (2015). Reclaiming the homeland: Belonging among diaspora generations of Greek Australians from Castellorizo. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 18(1-2), 67-88. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.18.1-2.67
  • Lowe, L. (1991). Heterogeneity, hybridity, multiplicity: Marking Asian American differences. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 1(1), 24-44. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.1.1.24
  • Chernobrov, D. & Wilmers, L. (2019). Diaspora identity and a new generation: Armenian diaspora youth on the Genocide and the Karabakh War. Nationalities Papers, 48(5). DOI:10.1017/nps.2019.74

Guest Bios:

K.M. Greg Sarkissian is a founding member of the Zoryan Institute, in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1982, and in Canada in 1984. He is the chief strategist of the Institute since 1990 and has been President since 1995. Along with his colleagues and Board Members, he has established the Genocide and Human Rights University Program in partnership with the University of Toronto. As the Director of Economic Affairs of the Institute’s two journals, he initiated the partnerships with the University of Toronto Press for Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies and Genocide Studies and Prevention, followed by Genocide Studies International. A graduate of the University of California in 1972, he is founder and president of Byron Hill Group Companies since 1985 and Servocraft Limited Canada, since 1982 and Yorkbridge Plastics Packaging since 1996. In 2019, Greg was appointed to the Order of Canada, one of the nation's highest honours systems.

Talar Sarkissian is a Development Manager at Oxford Properties, working on multi-phased, mixed-use projects, masterplans and industrial developments. Prior to joining Oxford Properties, Talar worked in Boston at Banco Santander in Portfolio Management and Credit Card Risk. After completing her MBA, she worked in New York at Speakup and Margaritaville Media (both Media-Tech startups) in COO and Business Development roles respectively. Talar completed a BS in Economics from Babson College, a bi-lingual MBA from IESE in Spain and a MSRED from Columbia University. She was class president of her MBA program, received the service award at Columbia and is now the co-chair of the Multicultural Alliance ERG at OMERS and a member of the Sustainability Team at Oxford Properties.

More Episodes


Episode 1 - Uprooted

Season 1, Ep. 1
In this episode, Cheng and Athena explore reasons behind migration, and their personal experiences of being “uprooted” from their homeland and “replanted” in Canada. This episode provides an introduction to identities, culture, and hybridity.To learn more about the themes presented in this episode, refer to these papers from Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies:Howard, A. (2011). Diaspora no more? The role of Facebook in the development of a global Rotuman community. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 20(2), 177-203.https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.20.2.003Liebelt, C., Shenar, G., & Werbner, P. (2010). Migration, diaspora, and religious pilgrimage in comparative perspective: Sacred geographies and ethical landscapes. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 19(1), 32-50. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.19.1.03Tölölyan, K. (1991). The nation-state and its others: In lieu of a preface, Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 1(1), 3-7. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.1.1.3Jules-Rosette, B. (2000). Identity discourses and diasporic aesthetics in Black Paris: Community formation and the translation of culture, Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 9(1), 39-58. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.9.1.39Fortier, A. (1998). The politics of "Italians abroad": Nation, diaspora, and new geographies of identity. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 7(2), 197-224. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.7.2.197Guest BiosAthena Madan is an Assistant Professor at Royal Roads University, School of Humanitarian Studies. She is a naturalised Canadian citizen who is half Filipino and half Indian. She is additionally fluently bilingual in French and in English; the mother of Deven (born March 2019); the other half of Drew (a partner with Woodward & Company LLP); and the seventh of seven siblings (auspicious for a Filipino). Athena is one of the recipients of the 2021 Distinguished Academics Award from the Confederation of Faculty Associations of British Columbia (CUFA BC), and the recipient of the RRU Kelly Outstanding Teacher Award (2021). In 2018, Athena was selected as a winner of the Untold Stories Competition @ NPR, Johns Hopkins, & the Consortium for Universities in Global Health.Cheng Xu is a PhD candidate in Political Science at the University of Toronto. He is a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholar and the 2021-2022 Cadieux-Leger Fellow at Global Affairs Canada. Cheng has served for nearly ten years in the Canadian Armed Forces as an airborne infantry officer.

Episode 6 - Connecting Cultures through Choir

Season 1, Ep. 6
In this episode, Lili and Marta have a conversation about passing on their Latin American and Ukrainian heritages to their communities through their work with theVancouver Latin American Cultural Centre Society and the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium. This episode reveals how communities share and preserve culture through informal and formal education, and the creative ways that Diasporas have stayed connected to each other and to their homelands through the COVID-19 pandemic.To learn more about the themes presented in this episode, refer to these papers from Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies:Gezentsvey-Lamy, M. A., Ward, C., & Liu, J. H. (2013). Motivation for ethno-cultural continuity. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 44(7), 1047-1066. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022022113478657Sökefeld, M. (2002). Alevism online: Re-imagining a community in virtual space. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 11(1), 85-123. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.11.1.85Guest BiosLili Vieira de Carvalho is the Vancouver Latin American Cultural Centre Society’s Executive Director. Lili was one of the founders of VLACC and its vice-president from 2012 to early 2019, while also chairing the Programming Committee. Since incorporation, she has been involved in all levels of the organization’s activities, from marketing and communications to fundraising efforts. She’s also the spokesperson of the Consulate General of Brazil in Vancouver’s Citizen Council. Born in Brazil, Lili immigrated to Vancouver in 2008 and has over 30 years of experience in arts management. Since accepting the Executive Director position with VLACC, Lili led an 8-month Capacity Building plan that prepared the organization to expand its fundraising and planning strategies, while developing governance and volunteer recruiting and retention. In that same period, she collaborated in doubling the organization's budget. Recently she led the work of integrating VLACC's new website with a donor and member management database while planning for 2021's program line-up.Marta Baziuk is Executive Director of the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium (HREC), a project of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, University of Alberta (Toronto office). HREC was founded in 2013 with the mandate to promote knowledge and awareness of the Holodomor through a range of research, education and outreach activities, engaging academic audiences, educators and the broader public. HREC initiatives include a publications program, annual research grants competition, visiting scholar and post-doctoral fellowships, conferences, and development of pedagogical materials. Marta has more than 25 years of experience in international development and the not-for-profit sector. In the early 1990s, while representing the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) in Ukraine, she worked with local activists to establish the first nationwide election monitoring organization, the Non-Partisan Committee of Voters. As Ukraine Program Officer for Winrock International, Marta oversaw the establishment of a national network of women’s centers that offer job skills training programs, domestic violence hotlines, and other services.She holds a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Episode 3 - Poutine in Portugal

Season 1, Ep. 3
In this episode, João and Regine talk about their experiences of returning back to their homelands of Portugal and Rwanda after living as Diasporan Canadians. This episode explores the subjects of belonging, staying connected, hybrid identities, race, food and culture, and where one feels most at “home”.To learn more about the themes presented in this episode, refer to these papers from Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies:Sardinha, J. (2014). “Even if the only thing for me to do here was to milk cows”: Portuguese emigrant descendant returnees from Canada narrate pre-return desires and motivations. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 17(3), 316-339. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.17.3.316King, R., Christou, A., Goodson, I., Teerling, J. (2014). Tales of satisfaction and disillusionment: Second-generation “return” migration to Greece and Cyprus. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 17(3), 262-287. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.17.3.262Kasbarian, S. (2015). The myth and reality of “return”— Diaspora in the “homeland”.Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 18(3), 358-381. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.18.3.358Ishkanian, A. (2004). Review essay: Home-comings and goings. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 13(1), 111-121. https://doi.org/10.3138/diaspora.13.1.111Guest BiosAfter completing his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geography at the University of Northern British Columbia in 1997, João Sardinha moved to Lisbon, Portugal to do his Masters in Geography and Regional Studies at Nova University of Lisbon which he then followed up with a PhD Degree at the University of Sussex in the UK. For the last 14 years he's worked as a social science researcher at three academic research institutions in Portugal, most recently for the International Organization for Migration, and he also works as a free-lance translator. His primary area of research during this the last almost decade and a half has focused on the ancestral homeland return of the offspring of Portuguese emigrants back to Portugal.Dr. Régine Uwibereyeho King is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary. King has a PhD in Social Work and a Masters in Counselling Psychology and Community Development (MEd.) from University of Toronto, and a Bachelor of Education from the National University of Rwanda. Her research interests include social processes of healing, forgiveness and reconciliation, refugee issues, cross-cultural mental health, Indigenous knowledge, and racial justice. Her research agenda is guided by anti-colonial, antiracist perspectives, and Black feminism. King is a community-based researcher who utilizes critical ethnography and critical storytelling/narrative methods in her research projects. Dr. King has published her work in the areas of truth and reconciliation, intergroup dialogues, healing of collective trauma, anti-Black racism, refugee mental health, transnational social work, and critical pedagogies. King’s community engagement includes genocide prevention, various academic committees, advocacy, and support to marginalized communities.