The Canada Seminar examines Canadian social, economic, cultural, and political issues in their domestic and international dimensions. Presentations are made by public figures, scholars, artists, and experts in various fields to provide Harvard faculty and students, and the broader community, a look at Canadian scholarly and public life. It seeks to enhance the understanding of one of the United States' closest allies and largest trading partners, and to provide a forum for the lively exchange of ideas on a wide range of issues. Because Canada and the United States must respond to similar economic and social challenges with distinctly different frameworks and historical legacies, the study of Canadian issues offers rich opportunities for scholars engaged in comparative studies. The seminar has presented numerous distinguished speakers including Canadian Supreme Court Justice Madame Rosalie Abella; political philosophers, Charles Taylor and Will Kymlicka; Matthew Teitelbaum, director and CEO of the Art Gallery of Ontario; and interim leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, the Honorable Bob Rae.

In 2014-2015, Marcel Fournier, professor of sociology at the University of Montreal joins us the Canada Program as the William Lyon Mackenzie King Visiting Professor of Canadian Studies and Canada Seminar Chair.

In 2013–2014, George Elliott Clarke, professor of English at the University of Toronto, organized the 2013-2014 Canada Seminar listed below. 


Spring 2015 Canada Program Seminars


Québec Cultural Policy:  Why Government is Investing in Arts and Culture
Ms. Hélène David 
Québec’s Minister of Culture and Communications 
Québec’s Minister Responsible for the Protection and Promotion of the French Language
3  p.m.
Reading Room, Harvard Faculty Club, 20 Quincy Street
Reception to follow

Hélène David holds a master’s degree and a doctorate in clinical psychology from the Université de Montréal. She has taught at the university, served as assistant director of the psychology department, vice-president for academic affairs, acting provost, and vice-president for international relations, the Francophonie and institutional partnerships. She is also a recognized author and speaker, having received a number of prestigious awards for her contributions to Montréal’s cultural and scientific life. From 2008 to 2010, she served as assistant deputy minister responsible for higher education in the Ministère de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport. Ms. David was elected for the first time in the 2014 general election as Member of the National Assembly for Outremont. She is currently the Minister of Culture and Communications and Minister Responsible for the Protection and Promotion of the French Language. In 1961 the Québec government created the Department of Cultural Affairs—today’s Ministry of Culture and Communications. Over the past 50 years, the Ministry has developed a large array of policies, institutions, and financial assistance programs. These have ranged from ensuring the promotion of cultural development across all regions of Québec, heritage preservation, and support for museums, to the creation of laws protecting the status of artists and the creation of writers’ residencies in school systems. In 1992 this work was further developed through the creation of Québec’s cultural policy, which led to a number of new measures, among them the creation of the Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec (Québec Arts Council, CALQ) and the Société de développement des industries culturelles (Corporation for the development of Cultural Industries, SODEC).CALQ’s board of directors consists of artists and arts professionals who seek to foster artistic excellence by providing grants to artists and non-profit arts organizations throughout Québec. SODEC acts as a bank for cultural industries, providing term loans, credit lines, and loan guarantees for these enterprises. Its mandate also extends to the administration of tax measures, government assistance programs, investments, and subsidy programs for cultural enterprises. As Minister responsible for the Protection and Promotion of the French Language, Minister David supports the use of French in all spheres of Québec society, so that the official language of the province is used and respected in business, labor, education and research, as well as in cultural industries and international institutions. In her speech, Minister David will highlight the measures that have made Montreal and Quebec City cultural capitals of North America and how culture and language are key components of Quebec’s identity and economy


Moving Stills and Constructed Images
Adad Hannah, Artist
4-6 p.m.
Room SO20, CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge Street

Adad Hannah was born in New York in 1971, spent his childhood in Israel and England, and moved to Vancouver in the early 1980's. He lives and works between Montreal and Vancouver. Hannah is interested in the way the photographic moment is performed for a camera and his works often take the form of video-recorded tableaux vivants. Through his videos and photographs he explores the nexus of photography, video, sculpture, and performance and how the human body occupies this space. Hannah has produced commissioned projects for museums around the world and been exhibited and collected widely. He has been awarded numerous grants and prizes including the Canada Council for the Arts' Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for mid-career artists. His work can be found in the permanent collections of many institutions including the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Museo Tamayo, Mexico City, Samsung LEEUM Museum, Seoul, San Antonio Museum of Art, Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, and many others.

Adad Hannah is represented by Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain ( and Equinox Gallery (


Re-Imagining Canada's Future - Citizenship and the Arts

Simon Brault, Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts
4-6 p.m.
Bowie Vernon Room (Room K262), CGIS KNAFEL, 1737 Cambridge Street

Simon Brault began his five-year term as Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts on June 26, 2014. He comes to the position with a full understanding of his role, having served as Vice-Chair of the Council’s Board of Directors from 2004 to 2014. Mr. Brault has been active in the cultural sector for over 30 years and has been a driving force behind a number of major projects. Notably, as Administrative Director and Director General of the National Theatre School of Canada, he coordinated the ambitious project of restoring Montréal’s historic Monument-National. He has held key positions in national organizations and has participated actively in initiatives such as the Forum d’action des milieux culturels de la Métropole, the steering committee of the Chantier de l’économie sociale, the Montréal Summit, the Rendez-vous novembre 2007 Montréal Métropole culturelle and Agenda 21C de la culture au Québec. An initiator of Journées de la culture, he was also a founding member and Chair of Culture Montréal from 2002 to 2014. A much sought-after speaker, Mr. Brault has given many speeches at national and international venues addressing the economic and social contributions of the arts and culture. His first non-fiction book, Le facteur C : l’avenir passe par la culture (La Presse / Éditions Voix parallèles, 2009), explained the dramatic rise of cultural concerns in the public agenda. This lively, highly-acclaimed work was published in English as No Culture, No Future (Cormorant Books, 2010). Simon Brault has received numerous distinctions for his commitment to the social recognition of the arts and culture. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada, Officier de l’Ordre national du Québec, a Fellow of the CGA Order and the CPA Order, and is a recipient of the 2009 Keith Kelly Award for Cultural Leadership.  Watch the video Simon Brault on the arts 


MONDAY, MARCH 9, at 4:30 p.m.

Crossing Indigenous Boundaries
Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford Street

Bain Attwood, Professor, School of Philosophical, Historical & International Studies, Monash University
Nicholas Bradley, Associate Professor, Department of English, University of Victoria
Philip Deloria, Carroll Smith-Rosenberg Collegiate Professor, Department of American Cultures, University of Michigan
Moderated by Maggie McKinley, Climenko Fellow, Harvard Law School

Join us for a panel discussion on the intersection of Indigenous cultures, comparative studies, colonialism, literature and history moderated by Maggie McKinley, Climenko Fellow, Harvard Law School. Harvard Visiting Faculty Bain Attwood (Monash University, Australia), Nicholas Bradley (University of Victoria, Canada), and Philip Deloria (University of Michigan, United States) will provide perspectives on global issues in the study of Indigeneity, a vibrant and growing discipline that is used to study Indigenous communities around the globe. Each scholar will share perspectives on a seminal text used in their work and provide insight into how it engages with Indigenous Studies, both locally and globally.


How a (Failed) Artist Can Become a (Decent) Museum Director
John Zeppetelli, Director, Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
4-6 p.m.
Room S250, CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge Street

John Zeppetelli recently joined the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal as its first non-francophone Director. He is also the museum’s Chief Curator where he oversees a wide-ranging program of exhibitions, public programs and acquisitions. At the centre of his first collections show at the Musée titled nouveautés et autres obsessions, currently on view, is his first major acquisition, a work by Thomas Demand called Vault (2012). Before joining the MACM he was curator for almost seven years at DHC/ART Foundation in Montréal where he organized exhibitions with some of the world’s leading artists including Marc Quinn, Haroun Farocki, Stan Douglas, Christian Marclay, Sophie Calle, Michal Rovner, Jenny Holzer, Ceal Floyer, John Currin, Thomas Demand and Cory Arcangel among others. An award-winning group show exploring loss and mortality across personal, social and political realms called Chronicles of a Disappearance, brought together works by Omer Fast, Teresa Margolles, Philippe Parreno, Taryn Simon and José Toirac. Before returning to his native Montreal, John worked at the ICA in London and in a commercial gallery in New York while he attended the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program. He has lectured in Video Art at NSCAD University and at Concordia University where he also ran the MFA Visiting Artist Program. John has curated media arts festivals in both Canada and Europe. He is also an award-winning filmmaker whose work has been screened internationally in festivals and galleries.

Fall 2014 Canada Program Seminars


"Good Buildings Can Help Win the War" - Architecture 1939-1945
Jean-Louis Cohen, Sheldon H. Solow Professor in the History of Architecture,
Institute of Fine Arts, New York University
4-6 p.m.
Porte Room (S250), CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street

Trained as an architect and an historian, Jean-Louis Cohen holds the Sheldon H. Solow Chair for the History of Architecture at New York University's Institute of Fine Arts. Since 2014 he has been a guest professor at the Collège de France. His research has focused on the French, German, and Soviet architectural avant-garde's, on colonial situations and on Paris planning history. His thirty books include: Architecture in Uniform (2011), The Future of Architecture. Since 1889 (2012), and Le Corbusier: an Atlas of Modern Landscapes (2013). He has curated numerous exhibitions, including the centennial show "L'aventure Le Corbusier," at the Center Georges Pompidou (1987); "Scenes of the World to Come," at the Canadian Center for Architecture (1995); "Interférences / Interferenzen - Architecture, Allemagne, France," at the Musées de Strasbourg (2013); "Le Corbusier: an Atlas of Modern Landscapes," at the Museum of Modern Art (2007). "Architettura in uniform," opens at MAXXI on December 19.


Expertise and Innovation in Art-Making: Trans-Disciplinary Exchanges between Artists and Scientists in 20th Century North America
Jan Marontate, Associate Professor, School of Communication, Simon Fraser University
Francesca Bewer, Research Curator for Conservation and Technical Studies Programs, Harvard Art Museums
4-6 p.m.
Bowie Vernon Room (K262), WCFIA, CGIS Knafel, 1737 Cambridge Street


"Sanitizing Montreal: Cleaning up the 'City of Sin' in the 1960s"
Will Straw, Professor and Chair, Department of Art History and Communications Studies, McGill University
4-6 p.m.
Bowie Vernon Room (K262), WCFIA, CGIS Knafel, 1737 Cambridge Street

Will Straw is Director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, and Professor within the Department of Art History and Communications Studies. He is the editor of Formes Urbaines (2014), Circulation and the City (2010) and numerous other volumes on cinema, urban culture, and popular music. He is a recipient of McGill's David Thompson Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Supervision.


"Are the Negotiations for a Global Climate Change Agreement Stalled? If So, What Can Be Done?"
The Hon. Stéphane Dion, Member of Parliament, Canada 
4-6 p.m.
Belfer Case Study Room (SO20), CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street

The Honourable Stéphane Dion has been a Member of Canada's Parliament, representing the Montreal riding of Saint-Laurent - Cartierville since 1996. During that period, he held various Cabinet portfolios. From 2004 to 2005, he was Minister of the Environment and as such, was instrumental in securing one of the greenest budgets in the history of Canada. In 2005, as Chair of the eleventh United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP-11), held in Montreal, he contributed to the rescue of the Kyoto Protocol. In 21006, he was elected as Leader as the Liberal Party of Canada and thus became Leader of the Official Opposition in the House of Commons. In the 2008 election, he proposed a visionary plan to green Canada's economy and strengthen the fight against climate change: the Green Shift. Before entering politics, the Honourable Stéphane Dion taught political science at Université de Moncton and Université de Montreal. As an academic and politician, he has authored numerous publications on a wide array of Canadian and international issues, including the complexities of climate change negotiations, global environmental policies, and universal carbon pricing. Born in Quebec City, he studied at Université Laval before obtaining a doctorate in sociology from the Institut d'études politiques in Paris, France. He was also awarded an honorary doctorate by the Carlos III University of Madrid.


Spring 2014 Seminar Schedule

February 10
George Boyd
A Discussion: Africville, Nova Scotia
This seminar will be held in the Belfer Case Study Room, SO20, CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street

Canadian playwright and journalist, George Elroy Boyd, is the creator of several highly acclaimed stage plays and an award-winning broadcast journalist. In 1988, the production of his play, Shine Boy, at Neptune Theatre, made him the first African-Canadian playwright to have a production played on Canada's premier stage. Since then, Mr. Boyd has written extensively for stage, radio, and television. He has been the recipient of several awards and citations, both in his native Canada and abroad. In 1997, he was chosen to represent Canada at Asia's largest international theatre festival, The Rafi Peer Workshop Theatre Festival, in Lahore, Pakistan. In Canada, his 1989 drama, Consecrated Ground, garnered him a nomination for a Governor's General Literary Award, one of the country's most prestigious literary citations. His journalism career has also yielded recognition. In 1990, he was appointed co-host of the CBC's morning TV news show, Newsworld Morning. Again, he was a first - the first African Canadian to host a national television program in Canada.

Africville, Nova Scotia, before it was razed in 1965, is believed to have been the oldest indigenous black community in Canada. Mr. Boyd will be discussing its genesis, and the circumstances under which it was razed, and will read from his drama, Consecrated Ground, which is based on that episode.

February 24
Zetta Elliott
The (Revolving) Door of No Return: Memory, Migration, and Magical Thinking
This seminar will be held in the Bowie Vernon Room, K262, CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street

Born in Canada, Zetta Elliott moved to Brooklyn in 1994 to pursue her PhD in American Studies at NYU. Her poetry has been published in several anthologies, and her plays have been staged in New York, Chicago, and Cleveland. Her essays have appeared in Horn Book Magazine, School Library Journal, and Hunger Mountain. Her first book, Bird, wond the Honor Award in Lee & Low Books' New Voices Contest; it was named Best of 2008 by Kirkus Reviews, a 2009 ALA Notable Children's Book, and Bird won the Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers. Elliott's first young adult novel, A Wish After Midnight, has been called "gripping," "a revelation . . . vivid, violent and impressive history." Her latest novel, Ship of Souls, was included in Booklist's Top Ten Sci-fi/Fantasy Titles for Youth and was a finalist for the 2013 Phillis Wheatley Book Award. Zetta Elliott is Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies at Borough of Manhattan Community College and currently lives in Brooklyn.

March 3
James Walker Twenty Feet from Stardom: Observing the 1960s Black Revolution in Canada
Isaac Saney Striving for Freedom: The Black Nova Scotian Struggle and Ideas of Self-Determination - A Contribution to Pan-Africanism

This seminar will be held in the Bowie Vernon Room, K262, CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street

Isaac Saney teaches history at Dalhousie University and Saint Mary's University, both in Halifax, Canada. His teaching encompasses courses on Africa, the Caribbean, Cuba, and Black Canadian history. He is the author of the widely acclaimed book "Cuba: A Revolution in Motion." He is currently working on two book projects, "From Soweto to Cuito Cuanavale: Cuba, the War in Angola & the End of Apartheid" and "Race & Revolution: Lessons From Cuba." He is a longtime community activist and participant in the anti-war movement and the anti-racist struggle, and is the co-chair and National Spokesperson for the Canadian Network on Cuba. Saney's roots lie both in Nova Scotia and the Caribbean, which perhaps accounts for his internationalist perspective.

James Walker is professor of history at the University of Waterloo, where he specializes in the history of human rights and race relations, and African-Canadian history. In 2003-2004, he was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He has written four books and co-edited another, and he has published numerous articles and book chapters on African-Canadian history and campaigns for human rights reform. In the 1960s he served as a CUSO (like the Peace Corps) volunteer with a Gandhian association in India, engaging in community development projects. As a student in Toronto he participated in the local support group for the US civil rights movement ("Friends of SNCC"). Later as a graduate student in Halifax he was a co-founder and teacher with B.A. Rocky Jones, the Transition Year Program for African-Canadian and First Nations students at Dalhousie University. Returning to Ontario, he was a found and long-term board member of the Global Community Centre of Kitchener-Waterloo, and has served on the boards of several NGOs, including CUSO and the Shastri-Indo Canadian Institute and the Advisory Committee for the Chair in Black Canadian Studies at Dalhousie. He and Rocky Jones, along with George Elliott Clarke, commenced collaboration on a book about the Black Movement in Canada and Rocky's prominent place in it. Despite Rocky's sudden death in July 2013, the book project will continue.

March 10
Suzette Mayr, author and professor
Memento Mori: Writing against the Dead Queer Stereotype in Monoceros, a Novel about Suicide
This seminar will be held in the Belfer Case Study Room, SO20, CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street

Suzette Mayr is the author of four novels, including her most recent book Monoceros, which won the ReLit and W. O. Mitchell Awards, and was nominated for the 2011 Giller Prize, the Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBT Fiction, and the Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction. Her novel The Widows was a finalist Commonwealth Prize for Best Book in the Canada-Caribbean region. Her work has been or will be translated into German, Italian, and French. She is a former president of the Writers' Guild of Alberta, and she teaches creative writing at the University of Calgary.

Wednesday, March 12 FROM 5-6:30 P.M.
Gary Geddes, poet
THE WRITER AS WITNESS: Poetry On and Off the Firing Line
This seminar will be held in the Reading Room, Harvard Faculty Club, 20 Quincy Street

W. H. Auden is often quoted in his poem on the deat of W. B. Yeats, whose speaker says: "Poetry makes nothing happen." This was not Auden's own view on the subject, and probably not that of Yeats, either. Auden's view of art is best expressed in his essays in The Dyer's Hand, where he says: "The mere making of a work of art is a political act" because it reminds the managers that we are not automatons, but living beings. Poetry, whatever its essential subject, is subversive; at its best, poetry flies below the radar, nests in the ear, stirs up the neurons.

Gary Geddes is one of Canada's best-known and most celebrated writers. He has written and edited more that forty-five books of poetry, fiction, drama, non-fiction, criticism, translation and anthologies and won a dozen national and international literary awards, including the Commonwealth Poetry Prize (Americas Region), the National Magazine Gold Award, B. C.'s Lt.-Governor's Award for Literary Excellence and the Gabriela Mistral Prize from the government of Chile, awarded simultaneously to Octavio Paz, Vaclav Havel, Ernesto Cardenal, Rafael Alberti and Mario Benedetti. His latest works are the non-fiction book Drink the Bitter Root: A Writer's Search for Justice and Healing in Africa and a selection of poems called What Does A House Want?

March 31
Wayde Compton, Poet and Author
From Urban Renewal to Negro Removal to Vancouverism: Hogan's Alley and the Legacy of the Black Community of Vancouver's East End
This seminar will be held in the Bowie Vernon Room, K262, CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street

Wayde Compton
is the author of two books of poetry, 49th Parallel Psalm (1999) and Performance Bond (2004), the former of which was nominated for the Dorothy Livesay Prize. He also edited the anthology Bluesprint: Black British Columbian Literature and Orature (2001). In 2010, his book, After Canaan: Essays on Race, Writing, and Region, was nominated for a City of Vancouver Book Award. In 2002, he co-founded the Hogan's Alley Memorial Project, an organization dedicated to researching and publicizing Vancouver's black history. He is the director of the Writer's Studio and the Southbank Writer's Program at Simon Fraser University Continuing Studies.

April 14
Sylvia Hamilton, Filmmaker and Writer, and
Jackie Barkley, Social Worker and Community Organizer 

Feminism in Black and White: A Canadian Conversation
This seminar will be held in the Bowie Vernon Room, K262, CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street

Jacqueline (Jackie) Barkley, MSW, RSW, has over 35 years as a social worker, with counselling experience on the IWK Child Abuse Team, Choices Adolescent Treatment program, the Short Stay mental health service at the Nova Scotia Hospital, in private practice, outpatient mental health, and on the IWK Crisis Team. She also worked for periods in child welfare, with the Geriatric Assessment Unit and Corrections Canada.

Jackie began her career as a community organizer in the old North End of Halifax, and assisted in the development of anti-poverty programs, welfare rights and tenants organizations. She also spent four years working at New Options School, an alternative school for youth in the Uniacke Square community. 

Jackie’s interest in issues of cultural competence and anti-racism work began during years of community activism, her participation as a singer and manager of the women’s a capella group Four the Moment, and in her Master’s program completion of a thesis on racial issues in the delivery of mental health services. Over the course of her professional career, she continued to volunteer in a range of capacities, including with Friends of Dalhousie Legal Aid, Community Justice Society, North End Day Care, Model School Committee, Social Policy Review Committee, and the Housing for People Coalition. Jackie was a 17year member of the Metro Coalition for a Non-Racist Society. The Coalition worked in advocacy and solidarity with the African Nova Scotian, Aboriginal and new Canadian communities – including conducting presentations on racism and white privilege, and province-wide distribution of their book Racism: Whose Problem? 

For over 15 years, Jackie has written, lectured extensively and conducted training workshops, on contemporary child and parent relations. Her publications include chapters in Power and Resistance: Critical Thinking About Canadian Social Issues, Daily Meaning: Counternarratives of Teachers’ Work, and a commentary in the November 2009 issue of the “Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.”

Sylvia Hamilton is an award-winning Nova Scotian filmmaker and writer who is known for her documentary films as well as her publications, public presentations and extensive volunteer work with artistic, social and cultural organizations on the local and national levels. Her films include Black Mother Black Daughter, Portia White: This on Me, and The Little Black School House. Her poetry collection, And I Alone Escaped to Tell You is forthcoming from Gaspereau Press. She has a BA, an MA and has been awarded three honourary degrees in recognition of her work. She held a Distinguished Chair in Women's Studies at Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax and has taught and given lectures at universities in Canada, at Middlebury College in Vermont, and at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica. She currently teaches in the School of Journalism at the University of King's College in Halifax, NS.

April 16 FROM 12-2 p.m.
Ethan Cox, Journalist and Political Analyst
From the Maple Spring to the Charter of Values: Quebec Politics in An Age of Cynicism and Hope
This seminar will be held in the Bowie Vernon Room, K262, CGIS Knafel Building, 1737 Cambridge Street
Chaired by Professor Jacob Remes, the 2013-2014 William Lyon Mackenzie King Research Fellow
A light lunch will be available - Please RSVP to Prof. Remes ( to register for this event

Ethan Cox
is a journalist and political analyst from Montreal. In 2012, his coverage of the Quebec student strike brought the Printemps Erable ("Maple Spring") to audiences around the world, and he became one of the movement's major English-language interpreters. He is the co-founder of a soon-to-launch bilingual, progressive news outlet in Canada and is a senior partner at CauseComms, a communications consultancy for social justice organizations.  

April 21
Canadian Poetry Quartet - FROM 6-8 p.m.
This seminar will be held in Room 4, Harvard Faculty Club, 20 Quincy Street
Jan Zwicky
Roo Borson
Clifton Joseph
George Elliott Clarke

Jan Zwicky has published nine collections of poetry, including Songs for Relinquishing the Earth, which won Canada's Governor General's Award, Robinson's Crossing, which won the Dorothy Livesay Prize, and most recently Forge, which was short-listed for the Griffin Prize. Her books of philosophy include Wisdom & Metaphor and Lyric Philosophy, recently reissued by Brush Education, and Alkibiades' Love, which will be published by McGill-Queens in 2014. A native of Alberta, she now lives on the West Coast of Canada.

Roo Borson is a poet and essayist. Her poetry has been awarded the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Governor General's Award, and the Pat Lowther Memorial Award. Her most recent books are Short Journey Upriver toward Oishida and Rain; road; an Open Boat, both published in Canada by Random House under the McClelland and Stewart imprint. She has also published collaborative poetry as a member of the group Pain Not Bread, whose Introduction to the Introduction to Wang Wei came out in 2000, and, more recently, with collaborator Kim Maltman, under the pen name Baziju. She was born and grew up in Berkley, California and now lives in Toronto. 

Dubzz/poet/at/large Clifton Joseph is an award-winning poet and journalist who has written for television, radio, newspapers, and magazines, including The Toronto Star and Globe and Mail newspapers, Toronto Life and Canadian Geographic magazines, TvOntario, CTV and most recently as a national reporter with CBC Television, the Canadian national broadcaster, in Toronto. A founding member of the dub poetry movement in Canada, Joseph has released a book of poems, Metropolitan Blues; an album of poetry and music, Oral Trans/Missions; the videos Pimps and (Survival) in the City; as well as numerous poetry singles, including A Chant for Monk, That Night in Tunisia, and Shots on Eglinton. He has performed widely across Canada, the US, the UK, and the Caribbean, and his poems have been included in a number of written and audio anthologies, including Poetry Nation and Word Up, Virgin Records compilation of North American performance poets, and in 2012's In the Black: New African Canadian Literature, by Althea Prince, the Antigua-born Canadian editor and author. Among Joseph's awards are two Gemini Awards for Best Writing in an Information Program or Series; a Time-Warner "Freddies" Award for excellence in health reporting; a Silver Fleece Award from the Chicago International Film Festival; and the Best Dub Poet Award and the Peter Tosh Memorial Award from the Canadian Reggae Music Awards. Joseph was born in New Winthorpes Village, Antigua and Barbuda, and now lives in Toronto, Canada, where he recently was the Managing/Editor-in-Chief at the JamaicanXpress newspaper.

George Elliott Clarke has issued thirteen poetry texts, four verse-plays, three opera libretti, a novel, two scholarly essay collections, and two edited anthologies. His plays and operas have all been staged, and his two screenplays have been televised. He has three titles in translation: one in Chinese; one in Romanian; and one in Italian. He lives in Toronto, but still owns property in his homeland, Nova Scotia.  Acclaimed for his poetry, opera libretti, and novel, Clarke has also won laurels for his pioneering work as a scholar of African-Canadian literature. His honours include The Archibald Lampman Award for Poetry (1991), The Portia White Prize for Artistic Excellence (1998), a Bellagio Center (Italy) Fellowship (1998), The Governor-General's Literary Award for Poetry (2001), The National Magazine Gold Award for Poetry (2001), The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Achievement Award (2004), The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Fellowship Prize (2005), The Fronteiras Poesis Premiul (Romania, 2005), The Dartmouth Book Award for Fiction (2006), The Eric Hoffer Book Award for Poetry (2009), Appointment to the Order of Nova Scotia (2006), and Appointment to the Order of Canada (2008). Clarke has also received eight honorary doctorates. He is currently the 27th William Lyon Mackenzie King Visiting Professor of Canadian Studies at Harvard University, in the Department of English. His newest book is Traverse, and autobiographical poem.

Fall 2013 Seminar Schedule

September 16
Nalo Hopkinson
But What Should I Call You Then, if Not African-American?

Nalo Hopkinson, born in Jamaica, has lived in Jamaica, Trinidad and Guyana and for the past 30 years in Canada. She is the author of four novels and a short story collection (Brown Girl in the Ring, Midnight Robber, The Salt Roads, The New Moon's Arms, Skin Folk). She is the editor of fiction anthologies Whispers From the Cotton Tree Root: Caribbean Fabulist Fiction, and Mojo: Conjure Stories. She is the co-editor of fiction anthologies So Long Been Dreaming: Postcolonial Science Fiction (with Uppinder Mehan) and Tesseracts Nine (with Geoff Ryman). Hopkinson's work has received Honourable Mention in Cuba's "Casa de las Americas" literary prize. She is a recipient of the Warner Aspect First Novel Award, the Ontario Arts Council Foundation Award for emerging writers, the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, the Locus Award for Best New Writer, the World Fantasy Award, the Sunburst Award for Canadian Literature of the Fantastic, the Aurora Award, and the Gaylactic Spectrum Award. Her novel, The New Moon's Arms, is a February 2007 release from Warner/Hachette Books.

September 30
Djanet Sears
Race(ing) Othello; Writing Back - Talking Back: The Re-visioning of Drama's Most (In)famous Black Character in Harlem Duet
This seminar will be held in the Thompson Room, Barker Center 

Celebrated Canadian playwright Djanet Sears is an acclaimed theatre director and an adjunct professor in drama at the University of Toronto. Her plays have been widely produced, published and translated. Selected productions include: The Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God (Mirvish Productions, Nightwood Theatre, Obsidian Theatre); Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop, The Stratford Shakespeare Festival, St. Louis Black Repertory Company, Nightwood Theatre, CanStage), and Afika Solo (Black Theatre Workshop, Factory Theatre, Theatre Fountainhead). She is the editor of two anthologies: Testifyin': Contemporary African Canadian Drama, Vols. I & II. She has been a Visiting Fellow at Stanford University, a Creative Fellow at the Royal Shakespeare Company and Warwick University, Playwright-in-Residence at Tarragon Theatre, Factory Theatre, Nightwood Theatre, and International Artist-in-Residence at the Joseph Papp Public Theatre in New York City. Her honours include the Governor General's Literary Award, the Canadian Screenwriting Award, the Gold Prize at the International Radio Festival Of New York, a Chalmers Fellowship, a Martin Luther King Jr. Achievement Award, the Toronto Arts Foundation Award, the African Canadian Achievement Award, the Harry Jerome Award and the Floyd S. Chalmers Canadian Play Award.

October 7
Amatoritsero Ede

Experience, Inexperience and (Un)Canadian Poetics

Dr. Ede is a Nigerian-Canadian poet, book editor, writer of creative nonfiction and scholar of postcolonial and world literatures. He is the publisher and managing editor of the Maple Tree Literary Supplement.

October 21
Joël Des Rosiers
From Diaspora to Metaspora: Journey to the Intimate Homelands

Joël Des Rosiers is an acclaimed Haitian-born francophone writer whose work has been nominated for the Governor General's Award and whose life reads like a novel - he is a psychiatrist and an award winning poet and a political activist on the international stage. His poetry collection Vetiver (translation 2005), which won the 1999 Grand Prix du Livre in Montreal and the 2000 Grand Prix du Festival International de la Poesie de Trois Rivieres, is now published for the first time in English. The collection has won the 2006 Governor General's Award for translation. Des Rosiers is a direct descendant of Nicolas Malet, the revolutionary colonist and signatory of the Act of Independence, was born in Cayes, Haiti in 1951. He moved to Canada during his adolescence when his family was granted exile. Des Rosiers later moved to Strasbourg for his studies and joined the situationist movement in the early 1970s. Throughout these years, he provided clandestine accommodation for dozens of refugees and sans-papiers in Alsace. 

October 28
Lillian Allen
Reloading the Can(n)on - the Poetics of Dub
This seminar will be held in the Thompson Room, Barker Center

Lillian Allen is a Creative Writing Professor at the Ontario College of Art & Design University in Toronto Canada. Allen emerged from the grassroots in the seventies to become a leading influential figure on the Canadian cultural landscape. She is an award winning and internationally renowned poet. As one of its lead originators and innovators, she has specialized in the writing and performing of dub poetry, a new genre of English Literature which is a highly politicized form of poetry preferring a black aesthetic and specific cultural codification. Dub poetry is a poetic form, which stylizes vernacular language, the emotive quality and inherent musicality of words and is sometimes set to music. It is considered a literary godmother of rap, hip-hop and spoken word poetry. Allen is responsible for opening up the form to insist and engrave feminist content and sensibilities. Professor Allen has published several books and recordings, and has worked in poetry, fiction, non-fiction, writing for children, experimental writing forms, and has written several plays. Her work also appears in a variety of media. She has spent almost four decades writing, publishing, and performing her work in Canada, The US, Europe, and England and elsewhere.A selection of her published works in book and CD forms include; Psychic Unrest, 2000, Women Do This Every Day, 1993; Nothing But A Hero, 1992; Why Me, 1991; If You See Truth, 1987. Her recordings (CDs) include; ANXIETY 2012, Freedom & Dance, 1999; Conditions Critical, 1988; Revolutionary Tea Party, 1986. “Revolutionary Tea Party” and “Conditions Critical” both won Canadian Juno awards in 1986 and 1988 respectively.

NOVEMBER 4th, SPECIAL MIDDAY SEMINAR - From 11 a.m. - 1 p.m., in Room K450, CGIS KNAFEL BUILDING, 4th floor
Errol Mendes
Combating the Tragic Flaw in Global Governance, Human Rights and International Law: Canada and the Canadian Champions

Professor Errol P. Mendes is a lawyer, author, professor, and has been an advisor to corporations, governments, civil society groups and the United Nations, where he assisted in the development of the UN Global Compact. He has acted as a human rights Tribunal and Boards of Inquiry adjudicator in Canada, as an international arbitrator on several occasions, served in the highest levels of the Canadian federal public service in the Privy Council Office of the Government of Canada, and most recently served as a Visiting Professional at the International Criminal Court. He was recently appointed as a Visiting Fellow at Harvard Law School for the fall of 2013. His areas of expertise include private and public sector governance and social responsibility, international law, constitutional law, and human rights law and policy. He is presently a full professor of law at the University of Ottawa. His most recent book is titled "The Court of Last Resort: Peace and Justice at the International Criminal Court." Born in Kenya, East Africa, Professor Mendes obtained his Bachelor of Law degree from the University of Exeter, England, where he ranked first in his graduating class. He obtained his Master of Laws degree from the University of Illinois. He became a barrister and solicitor in Ontario, Canada, in 1986.

November 18
Andre Alexis
Readings from Beauty and Sadness and A

Andre Alexis (born 1957 in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago) is a Canadian writer who grew up in Ottawa and currently lives in Toronto, Ontario. His debut novel, Childhood (1997), won the Books in Canada First Novel Award, and was a co-winner of the Trillium Award. His collection, Beauty and Sadness, was nominated for a Bocas Prize for best work by a Caribbean writer. He has written for the theatre and for children. In addition to his writing, he is a member of the editorial board of This Magazine.

November 19 - From 5 - 6 p.m., in Room SO30, CGIS SOUTH BUILDING, Concourse Level
Dalton McGuinty
The Defining Characteristics of Leadership

Dalton McGuinty, a Canadian lawyer and politician, served as premier of Ontario, Canada from 2003 to 2013. During that time he led his party, the Ontario Liberal Party, to three election victories. Mr. McGuinty's government established education, health care, the environment and the economy as its priorities, achieving real gains in each area: student test scores are up 16 percent; health care wait times have gone from Canada's longest to the shortest; Ontario is closing its coal plants in the single largest greenhouse gas reduction initiative in North America; and, to make Ontario more competitive, the McGuinty government cut the marginal effective tax rate on new business investment in half and adopted a value added tax. Mr. McGuinty earned a bachelor of science degree from McMaster University and a law degree (LLB) from the University of Ottawa.

November 25
Lawrence Hill
Blood: The Stuff of Life

Lawrence Hill is now the author of nine books of fiction and non-fiction. In 2005, he won his first honour for his work, a National Magazine Award for the article “Is Africa’s Pain Black America’s Burden?” published in The Walrus. But it was his third novel, The Book of Negroes (HarperCollins Canada, 2007) — published in some countries as Someone Knows My Name and in French as Aminata — that brought his writing to broad public attention. The novel won several awards, including The Rogers/Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, both CBC Radio’s Canada Reads and Radio Canada’s Le Combat des livres, and The Commonwealth Prize for Best Book, which came with a private audience with Queen Elizabeth II. The Book of Negroes is currently being made into a television mini series. This fall, Hill will give the Massey Lectures in five Canadian cities. Blood: The Stuff of Life is a personal consideration of the physical, social, cultural and psychological aspects of blood, how it defines, unites and divides us. The lectures will be broadcast on CBC Radio in November and the book will be published by House of Anansi Press.

December 2
George Elliott Clarke, William Lyon Mackenzie King Visiting Professor of Canadian Studies
This seminar will be held in the Thompson Room, Barker Center
Why Not an "African-Canadian" Epic? Lessons from Pound, Pratt, and Walcott

George Elliott Clarke (1960-) hails from Windsor, Nova Scotia, and is the inaugural E. J. Pratt (Poet) Professor of Canadian Literature at the University of Toronto and, currently, the William Lyon Mackenzie King Visiting Chair in Canadian Studies, in the Department of English at Harvard University. Clarke's honours include the Archibald Lampman Award for Poetry (1991), the Portia White Prize for Artistic Excellence (1998), a Bellagio Center (Italy) Fellowship (1998), The Governor-General's Literary Award for Poetry (2001), the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Achievement Award (2004), The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Fellowship Prize (2005-2008), The Premiul Poesis (Romania) (2005), the Dartmouth Book Award for Fiction (2006), and The Eric Hoffer Book Award for Poetry (2009). He was appointed Poet Laureate of Toronto, Canada, 2012-15, and also holds eight honorary doctorates. His major titles include Wylah Falls (1990), Beatrice Chancy (1999), Execution Poems (2000), George and Rue (2005), Blues and Bliss: The Poetry of George Elliott Clarke, ed. Jon Paul Fiorentino (2008), and two landmark volumes of literary criticism, Odysseys Home: Mapping African-Canadian Literature (2002) and Directions Home: Approaches to African-Canadian Literature. His poetry books have been translated into Romanian, Chinese, and Italian. In 2012, Prof. Joseph Pivato edited Africadian Atlantic: Essays on George Elliott Clarke. Clarke is currently drafting The Canticles, an epic poem on Negrophobia and the enslavement of Africans.Part I will appear in 2014.