Spur is a national festival of politics, art and ideas and is a catalyst for change in Canada.

Through nationally relevant and locally nuanced discussions, presentations and performances, the festival seeks to spur its participants to action on issues affecting Canadians. Feisty, multi-partisan, forward-looking, and solution-driven, this national railway of ideas will provide Canada with vital new cultural infrastructure for the 21st century.

Founded in 2013, the festival has already grown from three to five Canadian cities, with plans for further expansion across the country. Produced by the Literary Review of Canada in partnership with Diaspora Dialogues, Spur prides itself on its community partnerships, cultural connections and a focus on accessibility and diversity.


  • May 15, 2016
  • 3:00 pm
  • Manitoba Hydro Place

Spur asks how to embrace gender fluidity in a society that struggles to disentangle the biology of sex from the social constructs of gender.

  • May 12, 2016
  • 9:00 pm
  • Fools and Horses Coffee Company

At the end of an exciting day of programming, Spur invites festival pass and ticket holders to attend Fools & Horses Coffee Company to unpack the day's events.

  • May 13, 2016
  • 9:00 pm
  • Fools and Horses Coffee Company

At the end of an exciting day of programming, Spur invites festival pass and ticket holders to attend Fools & Horses Coffee Company to unpack the day's events.

  • May 14, 2016
  • 9:00 pm
  • Fools and Horses Coffee Company

At the end of an exciting day of programming, Spur invites festival pass and ticket holders to attend Fools & Horses Coffee Company to unpack the day's events.

  • April 10, 2016
  • 3:00 pm
  • Hart House Debates Room, 2nd floor

Spur asks: How do we reconcile increasingly complex racial and cultural identities?

The history of the People’s Republic, according to the dominant narrative, falls into two broad sections, the tumultuous decades dominated by Mao Zedong, the founder of “New China”, and the time of “reform and opening up” . . .

Everywhere from the 27-kilometre-long Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator to Canada’s own Perimeter Institute, researchers continue to push the boundaries of physics. Asking the “big questions” on everything from the origins of the universe to the nature of time and . . .

  • April 12, 2015
  • 1:30 pm
  • Hart House Debates Room, 2nd floor

The old adage is something like, “an honest day’s pay for an honest day’s work” but in the era where increasingly freelance contract work reigns and where there is little, if any, separation between work time and your own time, . . .

In her most recent book, Arab Dawn: Arab Youth and the Demographic Dividend They Will Bring, Bessma Momani challenges the negative assumptions surrounding the region, and focuses on the positive changes among Arab youth. According . . .

  • May 12, 2016
  • 7:00 pm
  • Rachel Browne Theatre

Spur welcomes a panel of pioneering women who have taken the power of game design and the potential of the World Wide Web to develop projects that challenge convention and provide fresh voices to the industry.

  • May 13, 2016
  • 7:00 pm
  • Knox United Church

On the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote in Canada, Spur celebrates the accomplishments and contradictions of the feminist movement and explores feminism in practice.

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