Sunday, January 22, 2006


How rare for the poor to win. Bechtel has agreed to drop its lawsuit against Bolivia for having had their unjust water contract in Cochabamba cancelled as a consequence of popular resistance. This is a major victory against the privatization of water and this should give us all courage as this struggle is bound to heat up over the coming years.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

New Anti-racism text - A MUST READ-BUY-SHARE

For all you educators this new book by Tina Lopes and Barb Thomas is something you should run out and get right away. It's called Dancing on Live Embers: Challenging Racism in Organizations and it's published by Between the Lines which has many other excellent titles for popular educators. Check out Tim McKaskell's book Race to Equity while you're at it. Happy reading!

Friday, January 20, 2006

How we make 'em laugh (and cry)

Here's a couple of things worth looking at:

Michael Moore's open letter to Canadians.

And the Daily Show's coverage of our election coverage. (Click on the "New Osama Tape" piece which starts with a short piece about Osama bin Laden and then continues into the Daily Show election coverage.)

Monday, January 16, 2006

A few things i'm reading this month (sort of)

Just finished reading Words To Our Now by Thomas Glave. It’s a moving book of essays against forgetting; for dissent in the heart of the Empire; about being black and gay and Jamaican and American and having to resist the multiple invisibilities that our diseased world practices against so many. It’s filled with courage. (Thanks for the loan, Judy.)

A friend gave me a Christmas gift of Signs of the Times, poetry by Bud Osborn with prints by Richard Tetrault. (Thanks, Kim.)

My dad gave me Neil Bissoondath’s newest novel: The Unyielding Clamour of the Night which I plan to read as soon as my sabbatical begins in a couple of weeks.

And I gave myself the gift of Chris Van Allsburg’s The Widow’s Broom, which has been a favourite for some time. Well, I actually bought it so I have it to read to my nieces, nephews and god-daughter.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Really cool journalling project

I love writing in journals and have done so since i was a teenager. It's amazing to open a journal i filled 20 years ago and try and remember the fellow i was. I make myself both laugh and cringe. I just learned about the remarkable The 1000 Journals Project (thanks, Nancy). It's worth perusing.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

This American Life faves

If you've never listened to This American Life then i recommend that you check it out. The United States of America (a strange country that has no name) is hard to understand. But this show helps. Well, that and The Daily Show. Here's a couple of my faves from past episodes:

In this episode called First Day, Act Two (starting at the 20 minute mark) is a story about a squirrel and a cop. Worth listening to.

In this episode called Fiasco, Act One is a story about a school play. It pretty much defines fiasco.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Harvesting Stories Popular Education info

Here's a few websites produced by students of the Popular Education for Social Change course in the Fall of 2004. There's some good popular eduaction oral history stuff here as well as a wonderful website about mural making. Check them out:

Educate: A Quarterly about Education and Development

I just came across this magazine, Educate, about education published in Pakistan by the Sindh Educational Foundation. I found it through heir glossary of critical education terms - a pretty good one. I'd not heard of Sindh before last Fall when i had the pleasure of meeting a Sindhi educator who was is currently a student in the popular education class i'm teaching at the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University in Toronto.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Reading Sarah Vowell

Some of you may know Sarah Vowell's work from This American Life or her voice-over work as Violet on The Incredibles. I'm just reading Assassination Vacation, an unusual travelogue. Here's why i love her writing:
Now, a person with sharper social skills than I might have noticed that as these folks ate their freshly baked blueberry muffins and admired the bed-and-breakfast’s teapot collection, they probably didn’t want to think about presidential gunshot wounds. But when I’m around strangers, I turn into a conversational Mount St. Helens. I’m dormant, dormant, quiet, quiet, old-guy loners build log cabins on the slopes of my silence, and then, boom, it’s 1980. Once I erupt, they’ll be wiping my verbal ashes off their windshields as far away as North Dakota.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

New year, new words

A new year is upon us. And a happy new year to you all (though we have a few new year's yet to go - Chinese and Persian to name a couple). As some of you already know, i have been awarded a Renewal Fellowship from the Metcalf Charitable Foundation. From February through July of this year i will be pursuing a plan that includes a lot of writing (letters, blogging, podcasting and more), bookbinding and critical reflection on the popular education work i have been doing for many years. It's gonna be quite a year!