Blog

Welcome to the blog for the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Posts on this site are the opinion of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Federation, its staff or its board of directors. Entries are posted in the language of the author.

Members of the university research community are invited to make guest blog submissions on issues relating to the wellbeing of the humanities and social sciences research and learning enterprise in Canada. Click here to read the Federations’ blog policy. Please send your submission to communications@ideas-idees.ca.

Storytelling and Strength: Voices from Indigenous theatre in Canada

Mandy Len Catron, Congress 2019 guest blogger

All of this year’s Big Thinking events consider how the arts function as a platform to engage with scholarship in the humanities and social sciences. Organizers were inspired by three big questions: Who speaks for whom? Whose stories get told? And who gets left out?

This event, moderated by Dr. Lindsay Lachance, brought together a group of award-winning Indigenous performers, writers and directors to share songs and stories.

Margot Kane, Cree-Saulteaux Founder and Artistic Managing Director of Full Circle: First Nations Performance, opened the event with a Cree mourning song. Kane spoke about how, as a young Indigenous actor working in mostly-white productions, she was inspired to create the Indigenous theatre community she longed for. Full...

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David Suzuki and Ian Mauro: Beyond Climate: Science, Storytelling and Solutions

Mandy Len Catron, Congress 2019 guest blogger

All of this year’s Big Thinking events consider how the arts function as a platform to engage with scholarship in the humanities and social sciences. Organizers were inspired by three big questions: Who speaks for whom? Whose stories get told? And who gets left out?

Activist David Suzuki and filmmaker Ian Mauro came to Congress to screen their latest film, Beyond Climate. The film, which was made over the course of several years, focuses on the increasing impacts of climate change across British Columbia, what Suzuki and Mauro refer to as “a sentinel province” for the crisis. The filmmakers toured the province to find those on the front lines of climate change—cherry farmers, firefighters, local...

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Simon Brault: The role of arts in protecting democracy

Mandy Len Catron, Congress 2019 guest blogger

At Congress 2019, the Big Thinking lecture series considers how the arts function as a platform to engage with scholarship in the humanities and social sciences. Organizers were inspired by three big questions: Who speaks for whom? Whose stories get told? And who gets left out? 

Monday’s Big Thinking event featured a talk from Simon Brault, the Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts. Brault spoke about the Council’s efforts to protect artistic freedoms while maintaining an ethic of civic responsibility. “Citizens,” he argued, “must be able to relate to and see themselves in the actions of organizations.” After his talk, Brault was interviewed by by Mirelle Langlois,...

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Esi Edugyan: Making space for convergences of disparate ideas or unlikely connections

Mandy Len Catron, Congress 2019 guest blogger

At Congress 2019, the Big Thinking lecture series considers how the arts function as a platform to engage with scholarship in the humanities and social sciences. Organizers were inspired by three big questions: Who speaks for whom? Whose stories get told? And who gets left out?

In the first of what will be five events at UBC’s Frederic Wood Theatre, writer Esi Edugyan sat down with Minelle Mahtani, Associate Professor in UBC’s Institute for Social Justice. After reading an excerpt from her Giller Prize winning third novel, Washington Black, Edugyan spoke about her process as a writer, but also about the many ways the act of crafting a novel can speak to larger personal and political questions....

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