Authors in discussion: Omar El Akkad and Esi Edugyan at SFU

Simon Fraser University (SFU) is set to host an event to discuss Esi Edugyan’s powerful book Washington Black. Omar El Akkad will participate in a discussion with Edugyan on Jan. 30 to unpack her poignant coming of age story about a young slave named Wash Black and his journey into freedom and adulthood. Washington Black…

Argotian: learning English in virtual reality

A partnership, between the English Language and Culture Program at Simon Fraser University and the tech start-up Virtro, results in a pilot program integrating artificial intelligence and virtual reality into a language acquisition classroom. The department sees hundreds of international students coming to SFU to learn English and continuing on to undergraduate studies. Virtro is…

New Year celebrations across the globe

Jan. 1 may officially be New Year’s Day, but not all Canadians celebrate the new year on the same date. Canadians from the Filipino, Jewish, Russian, Ukrainian and Tibetan communities greet the new year at different times and celebrate in different ways. Polka dots for prosperity “Preparations begin immediately after Christmas and New Year celebrations…

“Once neglected, now celebrated”

This is how Cree-Métis literary critic Deanna Reder describes writings and storytelling by Indigenous authors in Canada. As associate professor in the departments of First Nations studies and English at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Reder is principal investigator of the project The People and the Text: Indigenous Writing in Northern North America to 1992,…

Heritage buildings of Gastown: The Dominion Building

This time, the focus of this column is on a building situated in the heart of the city’s financial district, across from Victory Square: The Dominion Building, previously named the Imperial Trust Building. The Dominion can be easily spotted from anywhere in Gastown or the area around it due to its unique architecture and style.…

From India to Canada: Catholic Christmas celebrations

Approaching another wintry holiday season, both pharmacist Mary Mani and Father Ajin George say the celebration of Christmas can play an important role in maintaining both cultural and religious traditions and practises. Both Mani and Father Ajin are practising Catholics in B.C. who grew up in the Indian state of Kerala. For them, Christmas has…

Everyone belongs here: charity advocates for newcomers to Canada

Surrey-based non-profit organization DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society empowers newcomers and other diverse communities to build the life they want in Canada. Through efforts like the recent Bundle Up Campaign which provided warm clothes, food staples and more for local refugee families, it champions diversity and inclusion for all, with a clear message: everyone belongs here.…

Heritage buildings of Gastown: Hotel Europe

Gastown, a Vancouver neighbourhood beloved by many for the restaurants, bars and pubs. But to connoisseurs of history, Gastown stands out as the foundation stone of the city. Everything here is dipped in heritage: the cobbled roads, the lamps that light up its nightlife and the buildings. For this series of articles, the focus will…

Lighting up Coquitlam

It’s the darkest time of the year, and the Coquitlam Heritage Centre’s Mackin House is brightening things up. It’s just not in the way most Vancouverites would expect, says Jennie Johnston. “This time tends to be focused on the secular and Christianized versions,” says Johnston, the Centre’s program manager and the organizer of Celebration of…

Vancouver: hand in hand with nature

Join Canada’s foremost experts in a panel discussing Vancouver’s West Coast Modern architecture and city-building with nature in Thinking Forward: Building With Nature. The upcoming discussion features Vancouver-based architect James Cheng and will be held Nov. 27 at the Vancouver Central Library. Due to exploding city populations, the art of city-building has taken on unprecedented…

Kıvanç Tatar: crossing the boundaries of science and the arts

Kıvanç Tatar, a newly minted Doctor of Philosophy from SFU’s School of Interactive Arts and Technology, has developed an innovative interactive AI music agent named MASOM for live performances during his Ph.D. research. Trained with musical styles from famed electroacoustic composers of the past, MASOM has been jamming alongside human performers in an audio-visual performance…

Decolonizing mothering: Experiences of Asian immigrant mothers in Canada

Every mother wants the best for her child, but how that is defined depends on the context. In her upcoming talk on Decolonizing Mothering at Simon Fraser University (SFU), Yidan Zhu, a postdoctoral fellow in University of British Columbia (UBC)’s Faculty of Dentistry, explores mothering as an ideology influenced by colonial relations, including race, gender…

Beyond noodles and spices: An Interview with Meeru Dhalwala

Vancouver owes its glowing reputation as a diverse city in part to its varied cuisines. However, what do we really mean when we talk about a global cuisine? Meeru Dhalwala, chef, author and co-owner of Indian restaurant Vij’s in Vancouver, talks about what the future of a cuisine away from home might be like. Simon…