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Bob Rae to Deliver Vigod Memorial Lecture in Human Rights

DATE:   26/9/18
TIME:   7:00 PM
LOCATION:   Kinsella Auditorium

Politician, lawyer, mediator and writer Bob Rae will deliver the Vigod Memorial Lecture in Human Rights. The lecture will take place on Wednesday, September 26 at 7pm in the Kinsella Auditorium at St. Thomas University. 

In his lecture, “Human rights in the age of populism," Mr. Rae will speak about the spread of populism in different contexts both domestic and international, and the challenge it poses to the rule of law and human rights.

Bob Rae was elected eleven times to the House of Commons and the Ontario legislature between 1978 and 2013.  He was Ontario’s 21st Premier from 1990 to 1995, and served as interim leader of the Liberal Party of Canada from 2011 to 2013.

He is working now as a lawyer, negotiator, mediator, and arbitrator, with a particular focus on first nations, aboriginal, and governance issues.  He also teaches at the University of Toronto School of Governance and Public Policy, and is a widely respected writer and commentator.

An author of five books and many studies and reports, Bob Rae is a Privy Councillor, a Companion of the Order of Canada, a member of the Order of Ontario, and has numerous awards and honorary degrees from institutions in Canada and around the world.

About Dr. Bernie Vigod
Dr. Bernie Vigod was a lifelong advocate of human rights. An outstanding teacher and scholar, he was a professor of History at the University of New Brunswick as well as Associate Dean of University’s School of Graduate Studies at the time of his death in 1988. Dr. Vigod served the cause of human rights with distinction. He spoke and published extensively on human rights issues. Dr. Vigod also acted as an advisor to public officials on human rights issues and took a leading role in organizations dedicated to promoting human rights. This lecture series is dedicated to his memory and features distinguished speakers on a wide range of human rights issues.

Book Launch / Public Talk – “Pipe Dreams” by Journalist and Award-winning Author Jacques Poitras

DATE:   27/9/18
TIME:   7:00 PM
LOCATION:   Brian MUlroney Hall Room 101

Please join us at St. Thomas University on Thursday, September 27 at 7 pm for the launch of Pipe Dreams by journalist and award-winning author Jacques Poitras. 

A timely chronicle of how Canada’s oil pipelines have become hotbeds for debate about our energy future, Indigenous rights, environmental activism, and east-west political tensions. 

Pipe Dreams is the dramatic story of the rise and fall of the Energy East pipeline and the broader battle over climate and energy in Canada. The project was to be a monumental undertaking, beginning near Edmonton, AB, and stretching over four thousand kilometres, through Montreal to the Irving Oil refinery in Saint John, NB. Conceived as a back-up plan for the stalled Keystone XL pipeline, it became the crucible for a national debate over the future of oil. 

In a cross-country journey, Poitras talked to industry executives, prairie ranchers, First Nations chiefs, mayors, premiers, cabinet ministers, and refinery workers. He also explored Canada’s perplexing oil relationship with the United States: our industry is literally tied to its American counterpart with sinews of steel. The Energy East pipeline represented a new direction, designed to get Alberta oil sands crude to lucrative world markets. Yet it was promoted in explicitly nationalist terms: the country was said to be reorienting itself along its east-west axis, tying itself together, again, with a great feat of engineering. 

By the time the journey ended, the story had become a kind of whodunit: Poitras witnessed the slow-motion killing of the fifteen billion dollar project. Unfolding in tandem with clashes over the Trans Mountain pipeline, Energy East’s demise heralded a potential turning point not just for a single proposal, but for Canada’s carbon economy.

Entertaining, informative, and insightful, Pipe Dreams offers a clear picture of the complicated political, environmental, and economic issues that Canadians face.

Jacques Poitras has been the provincial affairs reporter for CBC News in New Brunswick since 2000. He is the author of four previous books: The Right Fight: Bernard Lord and the Conservative DilemmaBeaverbrook: A Shattered Legacy, which was a finalist for the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction; Imaginary Line: Life on an Unfinished Border, which was a finalist for the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing; and Irving vs. Irving, which was shortlisted for the National Business Book Award and won the Atlantic Independent Booksellers’ Choice Award for 2015.

Book Launch - "The New ASEAN in Asia Pacific and Beyond" by Shaun Narine

DATE:   28/9/18
TIME:   2:30 PM
LOCATION:   Rotunda, Brian Mulroney Hall 318

The Research Office and Political Science Department invite you to a book launch for Dr. Shaun Narine's "The New ASEAN in Asia Pacific and Beyond," September 28 at 2:30 pm in the Rotunda.

"The New ASEAN in Asia Pacific and Beyond" traces the organization's political and economic development and explores its impact within Southeast Asia and beyond. It considers ASEAN's role both regionally and with regard to the external powers—China, the United States, Japan, Russia, and increasingly India—whose interests so strongly influence the regional environment. Dr. Narine's comprehensive, multilayered analysis critically addresses the question of just how ASEAN is evolving to fit the demands of a new era.

Refreshments will be served.

McKenna Centre Distinguished Speaker Series Presents Michael Geist, Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-Commerce Law

DATE:   2/10/18
TIME:   7:00 PM
LOCATION:   Kinsella Auditorium

Michael Geist, Professor of Law and Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-Commerce Law, will deliver a public lecture Tuesday, October 2 at 7:00 pm in the Kinsella Auditorium as part of the McKenna Centre Distinguished Speaker Series.

A professor at the University of Ottawa, Geist was named one of the 25 Most Influential Lawyers in Canada for three straight years (2011-2013).  He holds degrees from Western University, York University, Cambridge University, and Columbia University. He’s been a member of the International Trade Committee on E-commerce, the Senate Open Caucus on NAFTA, the Access to Information, Privacy & Ethics Committee on Airport Privacy, and many others.

Geist is the author of three books, 14 book chapters, and 19 papers in refereed journals.

Graduate School and Scholarship Information Session

DATE:   5/10/18
TIME:   2:30 PM

Thinking about graduate school? Wondering what your options are? Keen to find out about funding and scholarships?

Join Dr. Michael Dawson, Associate Vice-President (Research), and Dr. Michelle Lafrance, Professor of Psychology, for a one-hour information session on Friday, October 5th at 2:30 pm in James Dunn Hall G6.

Application deadlines are approaching, so don’t miss out on this important opportunity!

Political Science Lecture: Culture War and Public Opinon by Dr. Christopher Cochrane

DATE:   9/10/18
TIME:   4:00 PM
LOCATION:   Ted Daigle Auditorium

Dr. Christopher Cochrane, Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto, will deliver the Annual Political Science Lecture on “Culture War and Public Opinion” on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 at 4 pm in the Ted Daigle Auditorium, Edmund Casey Hall.
The 2016 presidential election brought to the surface of U.S. politics a reality that was well known to close observers for some time: Americans of different political stripes believe different things, harbor different values, and dislike each other much more than they used to. On key measures, American politics has not been this polarized since the Civil War. Under the microscope of U.S. media coverage, the political trends in the United States seem unusual. But are they? This talk will position American and Canadian politics in an analysis of the origins and changing nature of political disagreement in Western democratic countries.
Dr. Cochrane studies mass/elite and left/right differences in the structure of political preferences, as well as the consequences of these differences for party competition in Canada and other democratic countries. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Toronto, Master of Arts degree (Political Science) from McGill, and a Bachelor’s of Arts degree (History and Political Science) from St. Thomas University. He is the author of Left and Right: The Small World of Political Ideas and co-author Canadian Politics: Critical Approaches. He has been awarded research grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Connaught Fellowship, and Laurier Institute for the Study of Public Opinion and Policy.
Dr. Cochrane currently teaches courses at the University of Toronto on the Government of Canada, Canadian Politics and Government, Political Disagreement in Canada.

Marvin Westwood to deliver John McKendy Memorial Lecture

DATE:   25/10/18
TIME:   7:00 PM
LOCATION:   Kinsella Auditorium

Marvin Westwood, professor in Counselling Psychology at the University of British Columbia and developer of the UBC Veterans Transition Program, will deliver the John McKendy Memorial Lecture, Thursday, October 25 at 7:00 pm in the Kinsella Auditorium.

The lecture, titled “Enacted Narrative: A Group Based Trauma Repair Approach for Veterans Who Have Post Traumatic Stress Injury,” combines and builds on two group-based interventions: guided autobiography and therapeutic enactment. Westwood will discuss the two interventions individually and as a trans-theoretical model for change.
Narrative-based Therapeutic Enactment (TE) has been highly effective for traumatized individuals—both military and civilian. The presentation will include video clips illustrating how it is applied in work with Canadian Veterans who have Operational Stress Injuries (OSI).

Westwood established the UBC Veterans Transition Program to help promote recovery from war related stress injuries, and was recognized with the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals in 2005 and 2013.

Virtuoso Series: Captivating Eloquence

DATE:   25/10/18
TIME:   7:30 PM
LOCATION:   McCain Hall, room 101

The Saint John String Quartet opens the Virtuoso Series with a concert of eloquence that features two famous revolutionary composers: Beethoven and Shostakovich

Beethoven: String Quartet Op. 18 No. 2 in G Major 
Healey Willan: Poem (1930) 
Shostakovich: String Quartet No. 6 in g minor Op. 101 

Tickets are available at the door:
Adults $26
Students $10
Children under 12 and STU faculty, staff and students Free

Book Launch - "New Brunswick before the Equal Opportunity Program: History through a Social Work Lens" by Laurel Lewey

DATE:   26/10/18
TIME:   2:30 PM
LOCATION:   Rotunda, Brian Mulroney Hall 318

The Research Office and Department of Social Work invite you to the launch of Laurel Lewey's new book "New Brunswick before the Equal Opportunity Program: History through a Social Work Lens," October 26 at 2:30 pm in the Rotunda.

Prior to the implementation of the Equal Opportunity program in the 1960s, most New Brunswickers, many of them Francophone, lived with limited access to welfare, education, and health services. New Brunswick's social services framework was similar to that of nineteenth-century England, and many people experienced the patronizing attitudes inherent in these laws. "New Brunswick before the Equal Opportunity Program" examines the observations and experiences of New Brunswick's early social workers, who operated under this system, and illuminates how Premier Louis J. Robichaud's Equal Opportunity program transformed the province's social services.

Authors Laurel Lewey, Louis J. Richard, and Linda Turner describe more than a century of social work history, including the work of the earliest Acadian social workers. They also address the fact that the federal government did not take responsibility for social welfare of the Mi'kmaq and Maliseet people, planning for assimilation instead.

Public Talk: “Demagogues, Populists, and Rebooting Journalism Ethics” By Dr. Stephen Ward, Sponsored by the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs

DATE:   22/11/18
TIME:   7:00 PM
LOCATION:   Kinsella Auditorium - McCain Hall

In this public talk, media ethicist Stephen Ward argues that extreme populism worldwide undermines democratic culture and requires a reboot of journalism values. In an age of intolerance and global disinformation, Ward recommends an engaged journalism for democracy which is neither neutral nor partisan. He proposes guidelines for covering extreme populists, as part of a “macro-resistance” by society to a toxic public sphere.

Stephen J. A. Ward, PhD, is author, keynote speaker, and media ethicist whose research is on the ethics of global, digital media. He is Distinguished Lecturer on Ethics for the University of British Columbia. A former war reporter, he is founding director of the Center for Journalism Ethics at the University of Wisconsin, co-founder of the UBC School of Journalism in Vancouver, and former director of the Turnbull Center at the University of Oregon. He is author of 10 books on media ethics, including the award-winning Radical Media Ethics and The Invention of Journalism Ethics.

The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs ( provides an arena for critical thinking, public discussion and research into current ethical challenges in our society. The Centre focuses an ethical lens on everyday issues through public programming, supporting research, and in the provision of tools to facilitate ethical decision making at work. Co-founded by the Atlantic School of Theology and Saint Mary’s University in 2002, the Centre exists to ignite the examination of the ethical dimensions of everyday life to help us live and work together more effectively.

Public Lecture - Making Peace by Remaking Persons: Reconciliation and its Perils in Post-Genocide Rwanda by Dr. Laura Eramian, Dalhousie University February 11

DATE:   11/2/19
TIME:   12:00 PM

More than twenty years after the 1994 genocide, Rwandans are grappling with the question of what kinds of persons were capable of making or letting the genocide happen, and how they can know it won’t happen again.
Based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork in post-genocide Rwanda, this talk by Dr. Laura Eramian, assistant professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at Dalhousie, will explore how competing views of “good personhood” are at the core of everyday conundrums over what a good post-conflict society should look like. She will draw these issues out through attention to local peace-building organizations that aim to foster reconciliation by transforming the population into persons who are, in their words, “capable of peace.” In the lecture, she will contend that these reconciliation interventions ultimately falter on the contradictions of what it means to make peace by remaking persons and raise questions about the long-term effects of post-conflict recovery projects on people’s lives and social worlds.
Dr. Eramian holds a BA and MA from the University of Western Ontario and a PhD in Anthropology from York University. Her scholarly work focuses on personhood and relationships of patronage, kinship, friendship, and neighbourliness in situations of violent conflict. She investigates these issues through the everyday social lives of urban dwellers in small town Rwanda.