This fonds consists of one accession received in 2010 containing records created and collected by Prof. Robert F. Harney during his academic career. The records document to some extent his activities as a graduate student at the University of California (Berkeley), but mostly relate to his activities over 26 years in the Department of History at the University of Toronto. The fonds is organized into eight series and includes documentation relating to his doctoral education in the United States, correspondence with colleagues and students both at the University of Toronto and other academic and scholarly institutions and organizations, drafts of articles, papers, proposed books and research materials on Italians in Canada. Much of the correspondence from the mid 1970s on is signed in his capacity as President and /or Academic Director of the Multicultural History Society of Ontario, an organization he helped to establish in 1976.
Series 5 and 6 provide only a sampling of the original scholarly work that he produced during his relatively short academic career. Series 6 does not contain any manuscripts for the six published books he authored or coauthored between 1975 and 1985. In Series 5 only a small percentage of his articles and papers listed on his curriculum vitae will be found. However, as a result of his untimely death, researchers will find the manuscript for From the shores of hunger consisting of a collection of previously published essays brought together by his son and published posthumously in 1990. No complete manuscript for Prof. Harney’s intended work on Italians in Canada has been preserved.
These records are important for their documentation of the development of one of the first programmes in ethnic, immigration and pluralism studies at the University of Toronto. Prof. Harney’s shift from a specialist in European and Italian history, to immigration and ethnic studies is well documented in the correspondence files and in the sampling of manuscript articles and papers in this fonds.