McLuhan Centre Spring Program Week 5: Monday Night Seminar, May 2; Workshop, May 3; New Explorations Group, May 4


Winter/Spring 2016 program of events

PEOPLE ARE THE TERRITORY – How do we overcome the boundaries?

MONDAY, 2 MAY, 2016, 6:00 – 8:00 PM

With Shauna Brail, Atom Egoyan, Khalil Z. Shariff

SHAUNA BRAIL is an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, at the University of Toronto Studies Program and a Research Associate in the Innovation Policy Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs. Her research lies broadly in economic geography with a focus on the social, cultural and economic changes associated with the shifting strengths of cities; her secondary research focus relates to pedagogy and learning outside the classroom. Dr. Brail was appointed as the Presidential Advisor on Urban Engagement at the University of Toronto in June 2015. @shaunabrail

ATOM EGOYAN is one of the most celebrated contemporary filmmakers on the international scene. His body of work – which includes theatre, music, and art installations – delves into issues of memory, displacement, and the impact of technology and media on modern life. Egoyan has won numerous prizes at international film festivals including the Grand Prix and International Critics Awards from the Cannes Film Festival, two Academy Award® nominations, and numerous other honours. His films have won twenty-five Genies – including three Best Film Awards – and a prize for Best International Film Adaptation from The Frankfurt Book Fair. @ TheFu l lEgoyan

KHALIL Z. SHARIFF joined Aga Khan Foundation Canada as Chief Executive Officer in August 2005. He was previously with the Toronto office of McKinsey & Company, an international management consultancy, where he advised governments, financial institutions, and health care providers on strategy, organization, and operational improvement. Mr. Shariff served on AKFC’s National Committee for five years, and has cultivated his interest in international development and
conflict resolution issues through a variety of activities. @AKFCanada

Business Without Boundaries


WORKSHOP – Breaking Silos to Connect City & Classroom

TUESDAY, 3 MAY, 2016, 6:00 – 9:00 PM

Christopher Penney, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto
Jeff Pinto, Center for Distance Education, Athabasca University

How can the themes of “community creation” and “city as a classroom” raised during the McLuhan Centre’s Fall 2015 seminar series be extended to incorporate the student voice? This workshop will bring together representatives of U of T’s various divisions and faculties to explore the following provocations: How do we create a student-driven, interdisciplinary, creative problem solving solving laboratory at U of T? How can students help address the pressing challenges experienced by those in
the city and communities in which U of T is embedded.



NEW EXPLORATIONS GROUP – Total Posthuman: Remembering the Extreme Now

In an exploration of the persistent power of symbols, we juxtapose scenes from Hans-Jürgen Syberberg’s 1977 film Our Hitler with theories from Marshall McLuhan and the Frankfurt School on the totalitarian potential of media environments. We then consider the contemporary cultural tension whereby the power of digital networks to connect humans is tempered by the tendency to recombine human “material” to give birth to the obscure yet pervasive phenomenon of the “posthuman.”

One Response to “McLuhan Centre Spring Program Week 5: Monday Night Seminar, May 2; Workshop, May 3; New Explorations Group, May 4”

  1. A McLuhanite electric implosion seems to force in the digital media user an attempt to retrieve old imagery from obsolescence as a reaction to the new multiple connections, as if to protect the sensory nerves in the same way a visor or ear defenders would save eye or ear. The net is not so involving as TV because phonetic alphabet is all over it like a bad tattoo, just as it earlier increased its presence on TV when electronic print technology advanced to the required sophistication. TV became a hotter medium and print in a modern electric form was still hot but now not explosive but implosive, resembling a metaphorical nuclear fusion. Does this encourage a withdrawal into visual detached conceptions of human nature using humanity’s previous greatest mistakes, mashed up and hybridised as disguise approaching an uncertain future?


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