Shadbolt-GLS Big Idea Seminar Series

Join us for a new season of the SFU Shadbolt Graduate Liberal Studies Big Idea Seminar Series! These free seminar style classes provide participants with an opportunity to revisit, rethink, and reframe many of the most influential works of Western culture in light of current topics of social importance. Our one or two-hour seminar/workshops address a wide range of topics and are facilitated by GLS students, alumni and PhD candidates.  They are an ideal forum to encourage community engagement and debate.

September 2017

Where the Boys Are: The Role of Men in the 21st Century

Questions hang over the function of males in post-industrial societies. No longer required, nor perhaps desired, as traditional providers and protectors, many young men flounder educationally and appear purposeless as adults. Even their basic reproductive function is debatable. Here we will consider what men want and what they are for. Do frameworks exist that synchronise young men’s aspirations with society’s needs, and if so how should they be applied?

Facilitator: John Carter
Thursday September 21 and 28, 1:00 to 3:00 pm
Century House,  620 Eighth St, New Westminster, BC
Registration: (604) 519-1066

Culture, Identity and Food – An Exploration

In cultural terms, food represents a lot more than nourishment. It can function as a touchstone of identity, a marker of class and status, a magic potion that heals or harms, and a divider or unifier of socio-cultural groups. In this seminar we will explore how groups and individuals use food habits, in particular restrictions and prohibitions, to create and bolster socio-cultural identities, and how food fads arise and evolve.

Facilitator: Carol Tulpar
Thursday September 28 and October 5, 7:00 to 8:45pm
Bob Prittie Metrotown Library, 6100 Willingdon Avenue, Burnaby
Registration: (604) 436-5430 or Register Online

October 2017

Work and Care: Duty or Joy?

Work and Care figure prominently as indicators of a life well lived. However, many of us feel exhausted by the demands of work and burdened by the needs of others.  In this seminar, we will examine the economic and ethical foundations that have contributed to our current state of fatigue and disaffection, and explore theories that may offer alternatives leading to greater fulfillment and well-being.

Facilitators: Duane Fontaine and Kerstin Stuerzbecher
Thursday October 12 and 19, 7:00 to 9:00pm
Century House,  620 Eighth St, New Westminster, BC
Registration: (604) 519-1066

November 2017

Western Ideas: Japanese Story-Telling

Pop culture in Japan has transformed traditional Japanese story-telling by combining western ideas to create new stories for young people. Japanese comics (manga) and animation (anime) intended for audiences from toddlers to young adults, share a background of western ideas and philosophies with Japanese Shintoism and Buddhism to generate popular Western games such as Pokémon and Super Mario. Using manga and anime as a springboard, this seminar will facilitate a conversation to explore the fluidity of culture and ideas from different world views. We will also discuss what it is that makes some cultures more readily able to adapt to ideas from another culture while others strongly oppose such change.

Facilitator: David Leung
Thursday November 2, 7:00 to 8:45pm
Bob Prittie Metrotown Library, 6100 Willingdon Avenue, Burnaby
Registration: (604) 436-5430 or Register Online

The Threat of the Uppity Woman

There is a trope of women who use charm — if not sexual allure — to gain wealth and social position. Media, society, and authoritative voices portray women as stylish and scheming, manipulative and ambitious. Outside the private sphere, women’s success and their achievements become tainted. These uppity women, whether in popular culture or politics, are punished for their temerity and face ruination. Why? Let’s explore this enduring representation and talk about what is really going on.

Facilitator: Reema Faris
Monday November 13 and 20, 6:30 to 8:30pm
Kerrisdale Community Center, 5851 West Blvd., Vancouver
Registration: 604-257-8100 or Register Online

Mightier Than the Sword: Female Journalists’ Impact on Gender Equality in Afghanistan

Since the fall of the Taliban, Afghan women have entered the media as reporters, directors, writers and producers. Misogyny still prevails in Afghanistan, but media have given women the means to influence public affairs by disseminating information about their social, economic and political realities. Mightier Than the Sword, named best 2017 Canadian Documentary by the Female Eye Film Festival, follows three young women who are using media to navigate a path towards gender equality in a nation deemed the most dangerous country for women in the world.

Facilitator: Roberta Staley
Wednesday November 22, 6:30 to 8:30pm
Tommy Douglas Library, 7311 Kingsway, Burnaby
Registration (604) 522-3971 or Register Online