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Dr. Sonia Cancian is a historian whose work has helped to change the way we think about how migrants stayed in touch through letters and correspondence. She is the author of the book, Families, Lovers, and their Letters: Italian Postwar Migration to Canada (2010), and editor of the books, Migrant Letters: Emotional Language, Mobile Identities, and Writing Practices in Historical Perspective (2016/2018), Emotional Landscapes: Love, Gender, and Migration (2021), and With Your Words in My Hands: The Letters of Antonietta Petris and Loris Palma (2021). Dr. Cancian is a certified translator.


Dr. Cancian holds a PhD in Humanities (History) from Concordia University, a MA in Italian Literature from McGill University,  and a BA in the Specialization of French/English Translation. She is completing a Master in Psychoanalysis at the Université Paul Valéry - Montpellier 3 (Montpellier) following completion of the Narrative Therapy Practice Training programme at the Vancouver School for Narrative Therapy. 

A specialist in migration history, she is interested in the intersections of culture and the mind. She has examined the interrelations of narrative and migration from a theoretical and clinical perspective. She has developed workshops around the therapeutic practice of letter writing with migrant and cultural community organizations, wellness centres, women's centres, and other groups in Canada and abroad.  You can find out more information about her workshops here.



Affiliations, Collaborations, Partnerships

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1 write entirely to find out what I'm thinking, what I'm looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.

Joan Didion

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