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Episode 2 of the Landscape of Hope podcast episode is now available

How does sound making provide an embodied way of knowing and feeling? In what ways can sounds express feeling and how does this become reinterpreted by listeners? Landscape of Hope explores some of these possibilities as they relate to discourses of hope and hate, but rarely do we discuss the residual effects of their media creations.

After all, making music with experimental sounds is a dialogue. This episode invites Landscape of Hope collaborators Angus Tarnawsky, Caitlin Chan, Piper Curtis, and Devon Bate to channel their reactions toward hate (as expressed in Landscape of Hope recordings) into new creations. Their improvised jams become sites of exploration into their own unique choices as creators. In this process, each collaborator provides context around their approach to sound making. The usual Landscape of Hope dialog is turned inside out as its creative output now becomes the source for further criticism and inspiration for new creative interventions.

Originally produced June 2021
Written, edited, and presented by Lou Raskin
With contributions from Angus Tarnawsky, Caitlin Chan, Piper Curtis, and Devon Bate
Special thanks to Owen Chapman, Vivek Venkatesh, and Jessie Beier

Episode 1 of the Landscape of Hope Podcast is now available

How can hate be expressed and reclaimed? How can a performance provide a new form of expressing complicated, even paradoxical feelings related to hate and hope? How is listening connected to feeling?

These questions are layered with no readily available answers. Instead, Landscape of Hope dives into these ideas through mostly-improvised multimedia performances that mix sampling practices with live music, synthesizers, and projections. In order to adapt these critical and creative interventions into a podcast format, the Landscape of Hope podcast team use their reactions to live recordings as a springboard into deeper inquiries relating to the project’s formation. With co-founders Owen Chapman and Vivek Venkatesh, the podcast reflects on the open-ended process of working through and with hate via arts- and performance-based practices.

Originally produced May 2021

Written, edited, and presented by Lou Raskin

With contributions from Angus Tarnawsky, Caitlin Chan, Piper Curtis, and Devon Bate

Special thanks to Owen Chapman, Vivek Venkatesh, and Jessie Beier

Ghayda Hassan and David Morin nominated to be part of an expert advisory group on online safety

Project Someone is pleased to announce that two of our collaborators, Dr. Ghayda Hassan and Dr. David Morin, have been selected by the Government of Canada be part of an expert advisory group on online safety which will provide advice on a revised approach to combatting harmful online content. This task is highly important, given that currently, “harmful content, such as hate speech, sexual exploitation of children and incitement to violence, is published online every day. There are no broad regulatory requirements in Canada that apply to platforms regarding their responsibilities in relation to such content.”

The creation of the committee was motivated by the fact that Canadians are spending more time than ever before online and are therefore exposed to a higher volume of harmful content. The expert advisory group, drawn from a variety of fields and areas of expertise, will be tasked with providing advice on a legislative and regulatory framework that will effectively address harmful content online. Drs. Hassan and Morin are uniquely qualified to participate, given their expertise in the prevention of radicalization and violent extremism.

As explained by David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, “Too many people and communities are victimized by harmful online content that is often amplified and spread through social media platforms and other online services. The Government of Canada believes that Canadians should have protection from harmful online content, while respecting freedom of expression. The creation of the expert advisory group on online safety shows our commitment to taking meaningful action to make our online environment safer and more inclusive for all Canadians.”

We are immensely proud that two of the twelve selected experts to do such important work are Project Someone collaborators. Congratulations Drs. Hassan and Morin!

Vivek Venkatesh invited by UNESCO to participate in a Regional Technical Consultation

Project Someone director Vivek Venkatesh has been invited by UNESCO to participate in a Regional Technical Consultation for Europe and America. This consultation, which will involve proposing changes to be made to the Recommendation concerning education for international understanding, co-operation and peace and education relating to human rights and fundamental freedoms (1974 Recommendation), will be attended by other experts, professional networks and representatives of non-governmental organizations. Dr. Venkatesh has been invited to participate because of his expertise and involvement with education, human rights, and freedoms in North America and beyond.

Dr. Venkatesh looks forward to the consultation and is grateful to be able to have the opportunity to share his thoughts on the various crises the world is facing, and how education can contribute to their resolution. Much of Dr. Venkatesh’s work with Project Someone involves supporting vulnerable groups through education (see the ISP Project) and promoting lifelong learning and media literacy (Landscape of Hope, the From Hate to Hope Massive Open Online Course, etc.). These activities align with the changes and updates UNESCO wishes to make to the 1974 Recommendation.

Stacey Cann and Victoria Stanton featured on the Concordia website

Stacey Cann and Victoria Stanton, who both collaborate on Project Someone’s Innovative Social Pedagogy project, were recently interviewed for the Concordia University website. In the article (linked below) Stacey and Victoria discussed the importance of incorporating the slow movement to the university setting, and how creating the Bureau of Noncompetitive Research was an important step in this direction.

As Stacey explains in the article, “[…] when people work cooperatively, they come up with better ideas. When we overemphasize competitiveness and the speed of getting things done, there’s no longer space for that. In reality, Victoria and I are competing for a limited amount of funding. The bureau is about creating a place where we can think together rather than compete with one another.”

Congratulations to Stacey and Victoria!

Read the article here.

Call for participation: pedagogy and time

The Bureau of Noncompetitive Research (Stacey Cann and Victoria Stanton) is seeking co-researchers in the greater Montreal region to explore themes of slowness, dialogue, collaboration, and pedagogy (in the broadest sense), via the creation of workshops between March and June, 2022 (with the possibility of extension). This call is open to students, professionals, artists, and others, and a diverse range of experiences and backgrounds are welcome.

Potential themes that may be a starting place for inquiry (not an exhaustive list):

  • How do we engage students in their own learning?
  • Is it possible for ethical exchange from diverse power positions?
  • How do we make space for diverse ways of knowing & learning within the classroom?
  • How does slowing down change our relationship with our students and coworkers?
  • How do pressures from institutions affect the way we can or cannot slow down in our teaching practices? In our research practices?

Read the full call for proposals here.

Submit your proposal here: noncompetitive.research@gmail.com

Call for papers and session proposals: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the Cultural Industries Conference

Submissions for papers and session proposals are open for a conference, “Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in the Cultural Industries: Role of Cultural Organizations”, co-organized by Project Someone Director Vivek Venkatesh and professors at University du Québec en Outaouais (deadline February 25th 2022).

The proposed conference aims to be an exchange between researchers and workers in the cultural industries, where one can share the results of their research on EDI in the cultural industries and the other their experiences in the field. This juxtaposition of real-life experiences and research results aims to develop new knowledge rooted in the practice of workers in these industries. We invite anyone interested in EDI in the cultural industries to submit a paper or session proposal (whether you are a researcher, student, artist, or cultural worker). We look forward to receiving papers and proposals on a variety of topics related to EDI and the cultural industries, including the role of cultural organizations. We aim to present research results and testimonials from the experiences (initiatives, issues, etc.) of cultural workers and artists.

The conference will take place from June 15-16th 2022.

Submit your proposal here.

Find out more about the conference here.

A new documentary discusses the islamophobic terrorist attack of the Quebec City mosque and its repercussions

Five years ago, on January 29th, 2017, a terrorist attack was perpetrated on the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec City. Six people died as a result, and many others were severely wounded. A new documentary by Catherine Leblanc paints a vivid and current portrait of what has changed in Quebec City and in Quebec since this Islamophobic terrorist act was perpetrated. In the documentary, Leblanc interviews UNESCO co-Chairs in Prevention of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism  David Morin and Ghayda Hassan. Please note, this documentary, “Attentat à la mosquée, un devoir de mémoire”, is only available in French.

The documentary melds the voices of citizens and experts to discuss issues related to islamophobia and radicalisation. David Morin and Ghayda Hassan are UNESCO co-Chairs in Prevention of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism. In the documentary, Ghayda Hassan, who is a professor at UQAM in the psychology department, explains: “The extent to which the Canadian government failed to see how serious the threat of the far-right was surprising, when on the ground, we felt it coming, we knew that it was becoming more than hate speech.”

David Morin, who specializes in radicalisation and violent extremism at Université de Sherbrooke, states in the documentary that: “If you commit a jihadist attack, it’s a terrorist attack, it’s organized, responsibility is claimed. Whereas if it’s someone from here, who is white, then it’s someone who is suffering from mental health issues.”

Watch the documentary.

Director Vivek Venkatesh and co-founder Robert McGray to speak on a panel at the Hating on Social Media Symposium

Director Vivek Venkatesh and co-founder Robert McGray will be speaking at the “Civil Society Responses” panel as part of the Hating on Social Media Symposium organized by the Centre on Hate, Bias, and Extremism at Ontario Tech University. Panelists will be discussing new and emerging community initiatives to counter the spread of online hate.

The Hating on Social Media Symposium is a multi-day, live and asynchronous online event designed to explore online hate, with presentations from speakers representing wide geographic areas and varied disciplines.

When: February 8th, 2022 from 12:00-2:30pm EST.

Where: Online via Zoom

Register for the panel here.

Read more about the event.

Project Someone’s Innovative Social Pedagogy Featured by Concordia

Project Someone’s Innovative Social Pedagogy project (ISP) was recently featured by Concordia University in an article written by Amy Sharaf. This project mobilizes evidence-based principles in social pedagogy to promote critical digital literacy and empower marginalized communities.

As the article discusses, the ISP project aims to tackle “systemic forms of discrimination that diverse Black, Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) and people of colour face.” To do so, the ways in which these communities sustainably build resilience in an increasingly polarized society is documented in locations in Quebec (Montreal and Chicoutimi) and in Alberta (Edmonton).

Over the next three years, the team will work with approximately 2000 Canadians online and in-person “with the goal of using social pedagogy principles to promote digital literacy and gender equality, as well as empower community leaders and magnify their narratives of resilience.”

As ISP collaborator Paul Gareau states in the article: “the best response to understand and resist structural racism and institutional prejudice is by affirming the self-determination and value of each community. ISP allows for this to happen by making space for stories from storied places.”

Read the article

Watch an interview with Vivek Venkatesh on CBC (20:45-25:50).

Listen to an interview with Vivek Venkatesh on CBC Listens

Find out more about the project