On Risk and Journalism

From Spur Toronto RBC Emerging Scholar Sara Tatelman in anticipation of Spur Toronto 2017, launching April 6.

  Risk permeates nearly every aspect of our lives. Is it too risky to visit London after the recent attack? Does it make . . .

Welcome to Spur 2017

Last summer, as we were considering our 2017 festival theme, we were struck by the juxtaposition of Canada’s sunny sesquicentennial plans and the darkening clouds of ‘populist’ intolerance gathering in the US and around the globe. The 75 Spur events . . .

Moving from Talking to Doing

After four days of wonderful dialogues and enlightening panels about some of the most pressing issues of our time, Spur Winnipeg has spurred me into thinking about how we can continue these important conversations in our city and country, and, . . .

Contending with Marginal Histories in Books That Spur

In conceiving of new ways to imagine “Our New Tribalism,” this year’s Spur Festival in Winnipeg included two moderated events on “Books That Spur,” both of which showcased recently published books that make an important contribution to conversations about Canada’s . . .

On Gender Fluidity

Four years ago I started learning about sexuality and gender and their fluidity. I had the freedom and privilege to have conversations and discussions with people about these concepts. I’ve see people discover themselves and flourish. I feel like during . . .

The Urgency of Doing

In the words of Leonardo Da Vinci, “I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” This week, May 12-15, our city has the opportunity . . .

Embracing Diverse and Challenging Perspectives

It has been roughly four weeks since I had the opportunity to immerse myself in the Spur Festival. In that time, I’ve been able to reflect on the many intellectually stimulating conversations that I participated in during the festival, and . . .

The New Tribalism (Because It’s 2016)

Many of you may have wondered about the theme of Our New Tribalism for #Spur16. I know I did. I remember asking myself “what is the definition of a tribe?” and whether it is what distinguishes us from one another. . . .

The Unhyphenated Canadian

As a second-generation immigrant and the proud son of two parents who were refugees from the Vietnam War, I have always grappled with my identity and who I am. I would often wonder whether I am Chinese (they are of . . .

Ensuring No Good Ideas Go to Waste

A good idea unshared is a good idea wasted. As a national festival of politics, arts, and ideas, Spur is providing us with an environment for healthy debate, stimulating conversation, and a safe space to meet, laugh, and learn. It . . .

The Human Condition: A Paradox in Progress

Toronto’s 2015 Spur Festival focused on a key paradox of contemporary society: individually we are isolated, collectively we are connected, but together we are alone. This theme relates to the broader concepts of individualism and community. We tend to view . . .

Making a Difference Alone, Together

The theme of Spur 2015 is “Alone, Together.” To me that means that although we are independent individuals, we can make a difference together. As individuals, we can have a big impact in anything as long as we set our . . .
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