The Construction of Identities in a Mining Town: Implications for Community Development and Resilience

Janelle Skeard, MA Candidate

This research seeks to understand the linkages between identity construction and community development and resilience in regard to the mining industry in Central Newfoundland. The community of Buchans is a former mining company town whose social landscape has been heavily influenced by mineral extraction and the mining industry.The town was a product of the American Smelting and Refining Company (ASARCO) and as such the lives of workers and their families were immersed in the mining industry. This work will highlight the impacts of associated events, such as labour disputes and mine closure/re-opening on individual and community identities.

The objective of this study is to investigate the ways in which identity is constructed in affiliation with the mining industry in central Newfoundland and how this affects community  and regional development and resilience.

There are two primary research questions guiding this study:

  1. How have different groups within Buchans identified with mining over time? 
  2. How have these mining identity(ies) affected community and regional development and resilience?


“Hope Springs Eternal”: A Study of Company and Community in the Former Mining Town of Buchans, Newfoundland