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Person/organization

Sorokin, Stefan S.

  • Person
  • 1902-1984

Stephan S. Sorokin was born in Ukraine in 1902 and died in Spokane, Washington in 1984. He came to Canada in 1949 as a traveling evangelist. When Sorokin arrived in Canada the Doukhobor community was experiencing quarrelsome split between the Orthodox Doukhobor and the Sons of Freedom. The Sons of Freedom were engaged in acts of civil disobedience that included arson and nude protests for both of which many were arrested. Sorokin preached against violence, visited prisoners and promoted reconciliation. Consequently, he became accepted as a leader of the Sons of Freedom and displaced John Lededoff in that role despite not having Doukhobor background. He organized the Sons of Freedom faction into the Christian Community and Brotherhood of Reformed Doukhobors (CCBRD).

In search for a new “Promised Land” for the Reformed Doukhobors, in 1952, Sorokin, sponsored by his followers, traveled extensively to South America and took up residence in Uruguay where he lived for the next seventeen years and only visited his flock occasionally. While living in Montevideo, Uruguay, Sorokin send many letters and spiritual messages to his followers preaching against violence and encouraging peaceful resolutions and abandonment of more controversial practices. Nevertheless, some violence and civil disobedience continued. Sorokin’s correspondence is often signed with or addressed to with a term of endearment “Dyadya,” Russian for uncle. Sorokin’s was also given spiritual title “Iastrobov” (Hawk), a title of the missing Peter P. Verigin Jr., as some believed Sorokin was the missing Verigin, even though Sorokin himself denied that.

Sorokin wrote and published a book Tri dnia i tri nochi v zagrobnoi zhizni [Three days and three nights in the afterlife] in Crescent Valley, B.C., in 1950.

Sorokin married Ann Koftinoff in 1959 who relocated to Uruguay to live with him. They had two children Nicolas and Sonya. In 1969, Sorokin returned to British Columbia and continued leading the Reformed Doukhobors until his death in 1984.

Coady, Lynn

  • Person
  • 1970-

Lynn Coady was born in Sydney, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and grew up in Port Hawkesbury, Cape Breton. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Carleton University and earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from the University of British Columbia in 1997. In addition to a nomination for the Governor General's Award for fiction in 1998 for her first novel, "Strange Heaven," Coady's works have earned her numerous nominations and awards. Coady has taught creative writing at Simon Fraser University and in other venues, and she has worked as a freelance writer and journalist, publishing works of fiction and non-fiction in a range of anthologies and periodicals. She has also written several plays and a screenplay.

Chenier, El

  • Person
  • 1967-

El Chenier was born in 1967 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. They hold a BA from York University (1992) in Toronto, and a MA (1995) and PhD (2001) in History from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. From 2001-2003 they were a postdoctoral fellow at McGill University and taught in the Women's Studies program from 2003-2004. They were appointed Assistant Professor in Simon Fraser University's History Department in 2004 and have been an associate faculty member of the Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies Department since 2008.

Their MA thesis, "Tough ladies and troublemakers: Toronto's public lesbian community, 1955-1965," was an oral history of butch and fem lesbian bar culture in post-World War Two Toronto. An article based on this research was published in Left History as "Rethinking Lesbian Bar Culture: Living 'the Gay Life' in Toronto, 1955-1965," and has been reprinted in four editions of the edited reader "Rethinking Canada: The Promise of Women’s History." Their PhD dissertation, "Stranger in our midst: Male sexual 'deviance' in postwar Ontario," was published as a monograph in 2008 by the University of Toronto Press under the title "Strangers in Our Midst: Sexual Deviancy in Postwar Ontario." They have published numerous academic articles on various subjects relating to the history of sexuality, including those on debutantes and elite femininity in interwar Montreal, same-sex wedding ceremonies, and on interracial relationships and marriage. They have received numerous Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council research grants for her work. In 2010, they founded the Archives of Lesbian Oral Testimony (ALOT) as a way to digitize, preserve, and disseminate their own oral history research, along with that of others.

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