In Ghosts in a Photograph, award-winning nonfiction writer Myrna Kostash delves into the lives of her grandparents, all of whom moved from Galicia, now present-day Ukraine, to Alberta at the turn of the twentieth century. Discovering a packet of family mementos, Kostash begins questioning what she knows about her extended families' pasts and whose narrative is allowed to prevail in Canada.
This memoir, however, is not just a personal story, but a public one of immigration, partisan allegiance, and the stark differences in how two sets of families survive in a new country: one as homesteaders, the other as working-class Edmontonians. Working within the gaps in history--including the unsolved murder in Ukraine of her great uncle--Kostash uses her remarkable acumen as writer and researcher to interrogate the idea of straightforward and singular-voiced pasts and the stories we tell ourselves about where we come from.
Rich in detail and propelled by vital curiosity, Ghosts in a Photograph is a determined, compelling, and multifaceted family chronicle.