The Public Digital Humanities: Panel Discussion

@ Arts & Humanities

What are the opportunities and challenges that exist for the digital humanities to reach a broader public and to confirm the relevance of the humanities in today’s society?

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July 31, 2012 at 2:55 pm


Pierre Schoentje: The Art and Politics of Irony — Ironie, écologie et écriture de la nature

@ Arts & Humanities

Irony makes the world new by putting the world that exists in question. Its strength lies in its destabilizing power—it is the politics of art, the art of politics, and the language of dissent. By enabling critical representations of the world as it is known, but from within and against the familiarity of our own expectations, irony gives art and discourse special kinds of access to the public sphere, especially by mining beneath the given, the actual, and the known. A talk from Pierre Schoentje, Universiteit Gent, presented in French.

Part of the series The Art and Politics of Irony presented by the Institute for the Public Life of Arts and Ideas.

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May 10, 2012 at 1:22 pm


Peter Goodrich: The Art and Politics of Irony — Serio ludere: Legal Humanism, Satire and Critique

@ Arts & Humanities

Irony makes the world new by putting the world that exists in question. Its strength lies in its destabilizing power—it is the politics of art, the art of politics, and the language of dissent. By enabling critical representations of the world as it is known, but from within and against the familiarity of our own expectations, irony gives art and discourse special kinds of access to the public sphere, especially by mining beneath the given, the actual, and the known. Keynote speech by Peter Goodrich, Yeshiva University.

Part of the series The Art and Politics of Irony presented by the Institute for the Public Life of Arts and Ideas.

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April 27, 2012 at 4:35 pm


Charles Foran, City Unique: Montreal in the Life and Imagination of Mordecai Richler

@ Arts & Humanities

Mordecai Richler was never more engaged than on the subject of his hometown. In his work he sketched a brilliant comedic canvas of social striving and upward mobility; in his life he cherished the version of Montreal he believed most bold and open, Canada’s only great city. The intersection of the two impulses, in conjunction with the rise of Quebec nationalism, consumed much of his adult life, and came at a cost to his legacy. A lecture about the complex, and as yet unresolved, relationship between a major artist and his society.

Mr. Foran is the author of the recent and much acclaimed biography Mordecai: the Life & Times. Hosted by the Institute for the Public Life of Arts and Ideas and the Friends of the Library, in collaboration with the Department of English, the Département de langue et littérature françaises, and the Faculty of Arts Development Office, with support from Benjamin News.

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March 27, 2012 at 12:23 pm


The Public Life of Art in the 21st Century

@ Arts & Humanities

An important roundtable discussion among leading artists and thinkers on the place and purpose of art and artistic production, and the relationship between art and scholarship in the modern world.

Panellists: Darin Barney (Art History and Communication Studies, McGill), Margie Gillis (dancer and choreographer), Desmond Manderson (Law, McGill), and Kent Stetson (playwright and novelist)

Moderator: Paul Yachnin (English, McGill)

27 September 2011

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February 14, 2012 at 6:13 pm


Andrew Stewart: Shake, Rattle, and Roll: New Music for the T-Stick Digital Musical Instrument

@ Arts & Humanities

Keynote Lecture/Performance at the conference The Ghost in the Machine: Technologies, Performance, Publics

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February 3, 2012 at 12:00 pm


Tom Beghin: The Virtual Haydn: a New Recording Experience

@ Arts & Humanities

Keynote Lecture at the conference The Ghost in the Machine: Technologies, Performance, Publics

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December 9, 2011 at 2:29 pm


Mark Antaki: The Trial of Louis XVI

@ Arts & Humanities

The Nuremberg War Crimes Trial of the “major war criminals” of 1945-1946 and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 are often understood as opposite sides of the same very modern moral coin: the trial articulating an understanding of supreme wrong and the Declaration a vision of the ultimate good. It is customary to locate one of the origins of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the French Revolution’s Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen of 1789.

However, the trial of Louis XVI (1792-1793), the opposite side of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, tends not to be identified as an antecedent of the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial. This lecture will consider the trial of Louis XVI as perhaps the first trial for crimes against humanity, a trial in which the medieval figure of the tyrant begins to give way to the modern figure of the criminal against humanity.

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December 9, 2011 at 2:28 pm


Desmond Manderson: The Trial of Billy Budd

@ Arts & Humanities

Herman Melville’s story “Billy Budd” contains one of the most famous trial scenes in US literature. It has given rise to a number of conflicting interpretations which relate to the relationship between legality and legitimacy, or between justice and law. Indeed the story contains surprising connections not only to question about law that have concerned writers for thousands of years, but to particular issues of slavery and judgment that were of immediate concern in 19th century America.

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December 9, 2011 at 2:27 pm


Eugenio Bolongaro: The Trial of Sacco and Vanzetti

@ Arts & Humanities

Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti emigrated from Italy to the US in 1908. They did not meet, however, until 1917 during a strike in which they both participated as anarchist activists. They were accused of the murders of Frederick Parmenter, a paymaster, and Alessandro Berardelli, a security guard, at the Slater-Morrill Shoe Company, in Braintree, Massachusetts, on April 15, 1920. Their trial was heavily politicized, eventually polarizing public opinion and becoming an international “cause celèbre.” The defense strongly argued that the two men were innocent and that the justice system was participating in a political repression of radical dissent.

On August 23, 1927, after a long and vain legal struggle to obtain a new trial, their pardon or, at least, the commutation of the death sentence, Sacco and Vanzetti were executed in the electric chair. On the 50th anniversary of their execution, Governor Michael Dukakis, acting on the basis of recommendations from the Massachusetts Office of Legal Counsel, declared August 23, 1977 the Sacco and Vanzetti Memorial Day. In his proclamation, the Governor stated that the two Italian immigrants had been unfairly tried and convicted, and that “any disgrace should be forever removed from their names.” The legal, political and cultural debates provoked by the Sacco and Vanzetti’s case raise fundamental questions about the nature of justice and the role of the legal system in Western democracies.

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December 9, 2011 at 2:26 pm