Special Guest: Carmen Pola, Boston Politician and Community Activist
The story of what happened to Mission Hill is the story of many of America’s older ethnic neighborhoods. Seventy years ago, Mission Hill was an Irish neighborhood of homes and small stores in which people lived near their schools, their churches, and their shopping areas. But between 1940 and 1980 it changed: thousands of units of public housing were built and decayed there. Nearby hospitals expanded, displacing people from their homes. Developers and speculators bought and sold property and built twenty-story apartment houses. A new, poor population and an affluent professional population arrived to compete for parts of the old neighborhood.
Today this film, completed in 1978, remains unique in presenting one neighborhood’s social history set against the larger forces that reshaped a major American city. A must for courses in urban studies, race relations, and social problems.
Neighborhood Matters is a lunchtime series that celebrates the ways in which community groups have shaped the neighborhoods surrounding the Northeastern campus. This series is co-curated by the Northeastern Center for the Arts and the Archives and Special Collections at the Northeastern University Library.
Lunch will be served.
Partner: Northeastern Center for the Arts, Archives and Special Collections, Northeastern Libraries
Part of the Neighborhood Matters Screening Series
Born in Puerto Rico, Carmen Pola immigrated to the continental US in 1955. In 1971 she moved with her family to the Mission Hill neighborhood. Pola has been a tireless advocate for the community since that time. She has served on the board of countless organizations and under the administration of Mayor Raymond Flynn as director of the Office of Constituent Services.
Archives and Special Collections at Northeastern University Libraries
The Archives and Special Collections at Northeastern University Libraries houses and carefully curates a diverse collection of historical records relating to Boston’s fight for social justice; preserving the history of Boston’s social movements, including civil & political rights, immigrants rights, homelessness and urban and environmental justice. They focus on the history of Boston’s African American, Asian American, LGBTQ, Latino and other communities, as well as Boston’s public infrastructure, neighborhoods, and natural environments.
The primary source materials they collect and make available are used by community members, students, faculty, scholars, journalists, and others from across the world as the evidence on which histories are built. An understanding of the past can help inspire the next generation of leaders to fight for economic, political, and social rights.