Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Tatsiana McGee, October 10, 2018

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries


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00:00:00 - Background

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Partial Transcript: So, I'm just gonna have you go off and we'll start by playing your song, okay?

Segment Synopsis: McGee sings a traditional Belarusian folk song. McGee also discusses her important relationships and life lessons. She talks about moving to Lexington, Kentucky as an immigrant originally from Belarus.

Keywords: Baby Moon; Belarus; Immigrants; Music; Musicians; Sense of community; Songs

Subjects: Children; Communities.; Education; Emigration and immigration.; Families.; Immigrants--Kentucky; Lexington (Ky.).; Neighborliness

00:09:26 - Careers and interests

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Partial Transcript: Yes, and that brings to mind my next question which would be, what is your career at this time, but with you, it's careers, right?

Segment Synopsis: McGee discusses her education leading to her various jobs, including massage therapy. She also talks about her interest in dancing.

Keywords: Dancers; Dancing; Irish dancing; Jobs; Linguistics; Massage therapists; Massage therapy; Translations; Translators; Work

Subjects: Children; Education; Employment; Families.; Intercultural communication.; Occupations

00:17:38 - Adolescence / Life in the Soviet Union

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Partial Transcript: I want to rewind the tape now--

Segment Synopsis: McGee talks about the history and location of her hometown north of Belarus, and traveling to family farms. She discusses living under and the dissolution of the Soviet Union. McGee also discusses her parents' careers.

Keywords: Adolescence; Chores; Cousins; Farming; Jobs; Parents; Propaganda; Rationing; Rations; Republics of Soviet Union; Work

Subjects: Childhood; Children; Country life; Education; Emigration and immigration.; Employment; Families.; Family farms.; Family histories.

00:32:15 - Current life / Personal development

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Partial Transcript: Um, and right now she's retired.

Segment Synopsis: McGee talks about the current situations of her family members. She also discusses learning how to live as an introvert. McGee discusses how teaching her daughter Russian is one her greatest accomplishments.

Keywords: Belarussian; Bilingual; Daughters; Introversion; Performing; Retirement; Russian; Siblings; Slovak languages; Teaching

Subjects: American culture; Communication.; Communities.; Education; Emigration and immigration.; English language.; Families.; Intercultural communication.; Language and languages.; Stereotypes (Social psychology)

00:43:07 - Views of diversity

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Partial Transcript: So, let me ask you some diversity and inclusion related questions. How many languages do you speak?

Segment Synopsis: McGee talks about being fluent in three languages and working to learn more. She also talks about music as a vehicle of integration. She gives her definition of diversity and its connection to commonality. McGee discusses her experience as an immigrant.

Keywords: Advocating; American; Belarusian; Cultures; Folk music; French; German; Integration; Learning; Music; Russian; Songs; Traveling

Subjects: Communities.; Culture.; Immigrants; Intercultural communication.; Language and languages.; Language.; Stereotypes (Social psychology)

00:52:05 - Relationship with music

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Partial Transcript: And, you have a, another song you would like to sing for us right?

Segment Synopsis: McGee sings a folk song and discusses her interpretation of it. She also talks about her musical background, including all the instruments she plays and how she began performing.

Keywords: Belarusian; Folk music; Guitars; Irish culture; Irish folk songs; Irish tin whistles; Penny whistles; Performing; Pianos

Subjects: Communication.; Communities.; Culture.; Intercultural communication.; Music & musicians

01:02:31 - Expanding knowledge of diversity / Linguistic explanation of her name

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Partial Transcript: Is there an area of diversity that you haven't explored yet that you think would be really fascinating--

Segment Synopsis: McGee discusses aspects of diversity that she would like to learn more about, especially Asian and Latin cultures. She also talks about her growing reverence for her own Belarusian culture. McGee shares the linguistics behind her name.

Keywords: Asia; Asian culture; Belarusian; Latin America; Latin American culture; Linguistics; Names

Subjects: American culture; Culture.; Education; Language and languages.; Latin Americans.