Mosaic: Coming of Age in Boston, Across Generations, 1984 Spring
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This issue of Mosaic features stories, interviews, artwork, and photography by South Boston High School students who aimed to collect the life stories of a wide range of Bostonians. The issue is divided into 9 parts: Beginnings, Family, Departures, Day to Day, Women and Men, Rebellion, Loss, Coming Home, and Looking Ahead. Part 1, Beginnings, includes interviews with people describing their early lives, particularly the communities into which they were born, and what life was like when they were growing up. Mike Flaherty discusses growing up in South Boston, the impact of busing, and switching schools. Ken Haskins recalls growing up in the South Bronx in New York City in the 1920s and conflicts between Jewish, Polish, Irish, and Italian kids. Beth Luneau describes growing up on a Micmac reservation in Nova Scotia and issues of racism. William Bridges recalls the death of Martin Luther King, Jr., and taking part in the Grove Hall Riots in Roxbury as a ten-year-old. Lucille Days discusses growing up in rural Georgia and the differences and similarities between Georgia and Boston. James Figueroa, Hang Chuk, and Ellery Levesque share their experiences of racism in Boston. Part 2, Family, looks at family life in South Boston. Pamela Johnson remembers the challenges of growing up in a single-parent home. Eileen O’Hagan describes raising kids in South Boston and the impact that being a parent had on her life. Willie Parks remembers feeling isolated in his family and dealing with depression and attempting suicide. Luneau discusses raising a family as a Canadian Indian in a non-Native culture. Sasha Jones describes feeling misunderstood by her family. Don Baker discusses leaving school to join the circus. Flaherty considers what it is like trying to understand divorce as a child. Ana Muniz recalls growing up with divorced parents, teen pregnancy, and repairing relationships with family. Part 3, Departures, focuses on forging a path to the future. Martha Wheeler discusses growing up in the South, and leaving family and children to find work and a new life in the North. Nary Kong, Hang Chuk, Mech Beth, and Tri Huynh write of leaving Cambodia, Vietnam, and Thailand, due to war and violence, to come to the United States. Mike Hovey writes of being drafted to fight in Vietnam. Cynthia Cropper talks about the effect of her brother’s death and her decision to attend Fisk University. Bernie Sneed talks about running away from his home in the Columbia Point Housing Development, at age 14, and his return and attempts to make the community better. Ron Armstead recalls odd jobs after high school, joining the military, and leaving for Vietnam. Derrick Stone discusses his decision to join the military. Dave Connolly talks about getting drafted and the deaths of soldiers from South Boston. Part 4, Day to Day, covers the daily life of the interviewees. Tom Benson talks about life at Roxbury Community College and the Upward Bound program. Paula Banks discusses what it's like raising kids in South Boston. Armstead explains life in the U.S. Navy, and Connolly recalls combat and training in Vietnam during the Tet Offensive. Both discuss issues of race in the military. Muniz shares life lessons about raising children and marrying young. Darryl King, John Carpenter, and Antonio Perez discuss being 18-year-old freshmen with Boston Public School Scholarships at Boston University. Part 5, Women and Men, focuses on the issue of gender. Nicole Mary O’Brien offers advice on marriage, married life, and changing traditions. Kevin Sullivan recalls getting married to his wife, her decision to keep her maiden name, and his traditional background. Armstead talks about the difficulty that servicemen may have relating to women. Muniz and Banks discuss the amount of freedom they have as women in their relationships with men. Nancy McHenry discusses the differences in employment of men and women. Part 6, Rebellion, focuses on rebellion in relation to the War in Vietnam, both in the military and at home. Connolly discusses combat and operations, while Hovey talks about his decision to apply for discharge as a conscientious objector. James Rodriquez voices his disapproval of the draft. Haskins talks about the Civilian Conservation Corps, the racial segregation of training camps and going on strike on Lincoln’s birthday. Connolly talks about protesting with Vietnam Veterans Against the War. Part 7, Loss, explores the loss of loved ones. Connolly talks about the difficulty of mourning fallen soldiers. Denise Smith talks about losing her sister after she had fallen into a coma. Catherine Litchfield writes about her son being killed in Vietnam and founding Gold Star Parents for Amnesty. Part 8, Coming Home, examines the experiences of Baker, Connolly, and Armstead upon returning home from Vietnam: reintegrating with society, experiencing feelings of isolation. Part 9, Looking Ahead, includes brief quotations from each individual interviewed in the issue about what they are looking forward to in the future.
Mosaic (Boston, Mass.)
- Digital Commonwealth
- Contributing Institution
- University of Massachusetts Boston, Joseph P. Healey Library
- Mosaic records, 1980-1990
- Baker, Don
King, Martin Luther, Jr
O'Brien Nicole Mary
Busing for school integration--Massachusetts--Boston--History
Segregation in education--Massachusetts--Boston--History
South Boston High School
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- Chicago citation style
- Mosaic (Boston, Mass.). Mosaic: Coming of Age in Boston, Across Generations, 1984 Spring. 1984. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://openarchives.umb.edu/cdm/ref/collection/p15774coll34/id/577. (Accessed December 4, 2023.)
- APA citation style
- Mosaic (Boston, Mass.), (1984) Mosaic: Coming of Age in Boston, Across Generations, 1984 Spring. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://openarchives.umb.edu/cdm/ref/collection/p15774coll34/id/577
- MLA citation style
- Mosaic (Boston, Mass.). Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America <http://openarchives.umb.edu/cdm/ref/collection/p15774coll34/id/577>.