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The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
Student summer unemployment hits 20% Bursaries and financial aid in demand this autumn
The McGill Daily
he economic downturn hit Canadian campuses with a bang this July, when Statistics Canada recorded the highest rate of unemployment — 20 per cent — since 1977. Amidst the clamour for more burseries and sources of financing, students have exhausted services like McGill’s Career Planning Services (CAPS), which advised 10 per cent more students in July than the previous year, though they saw a 10 per cent decrease in job openings. Universities across Canada have also experienced significant increases in applications for financial assistance. Applications at Dalhousie University were up 62 per cent this summer, while McGill saw a 20 per cent increase in first-year bursary applications, according to Director of Scholarships & Student Aid Judy Stymest.
“We are trying to bring in more needy students in order to make university more accessible... As far as in-course assistance for returning students, it is too early to see whether it has increased. Aid is on an ongoing basis. To date, we have not seen anything, but I suspect it will come in later on in the year,” said Stymest, who added that McGill will do whatever it can to assist students in financial emergencies. “Right now, we are doing business as usual, helping students to the same extent that we have in the past. Everyone is sensitive to the issues that students must have some extreme hardships. We can find more [money] when we need it. We will not let any student drop out, and we will use every resource to do so,” Stymest said. Stymest also advised students in financial need to file an online application on Minerva. They will then have an appointment with a financial counselor. U2 student Deb Griffith was among those who felt the squeeze
over the summer. After the job she had lined up at a law firm in Boston fell through, Griffith struggled to find a job for the rest of the summer, applying to over 30 other positions to no avail. “Many businesses were trying to be careful and cut out the unnecessary [positions], which were usually summer student jobs,” said Griffith. U1 Management student Alyssa Cerbu experienced a similar problem. Having searched for jobs in both Montreal and Toronto, she eventually found a job through a connection from her father. Cerbu observed that students who had summer jobs in previous years were returning to their old jobs, such as working at summer camps for minimal salaries. “Older students were filling the job slots usually reserved for younger students because they could not find other jobs,” Cerba said. “There was more competition for the few jobs that did exist.”
Luke Thienhaus for The McGill Daily
Charest-backed bill would overhaul campus admin Student groups say solution is ineffective Niko Block The McGill Daily
tudent groups across the province have begun to mobilize against legislation, currently tabled by the Charest government, that would force all post-secondary institutions to meet a 60 per cent quota of external representatives on their boards of directors — the highest authority on campus. Christian Pépin, the Secretary of Coordination of the Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiuante (ASSE) — the second-largest student federation in Quebec — said that the legislation and its CEGEP counterpart, Bill 44, will put more power in the hands of people who do not have a vested interest in the welfare of the academic institutions. “We have an historical posi-
tion for the management of our CEGEPs and universities by the communities themselves, so we think the problems that are [addressed] by these two bills are masking the real problems that we actually have in education,” Pépin said. “The introduction of more administrators with independent status is a total fraud because people coming from outside the institution, the majority of the time, have profound corporate interests in education.” The Table de concertation étudiante du Québec (TACEQ) — a new student federation founded by SSMU and its counterparts at Université de Sherbrooke and Université de Laval — worked all summer with the ASSE and the UQÀM student union to coordinate a campaign to oppose the legislation. Both ASSE and TACEQ hope to
state their grievances formally before a general consultation on the bill, which is slated to begin Tuesday. The Charest government proposed a similar bill to the National Assembly one year ago, after the provincial government was forced to bail out UQÀM, to the tune of over $300 million, when the university invested in a financially disastrous construction project. But Simon Tremblay-Pépin (no relation to Christian Pépin), who sat on UQÀM’s board of trustees at the time and now coordinates the Political Orientations office for the left-wing political party Québec Solidaire, said that the external members of the board of directors were ineffectual in avoiding the problems that arose from the development project. “Internal trustees are much more aware of what’s happening. [The
external members of the board] didn’t even ask questions,” TremblayPépin said. “The problem was that the board of trustees was not informed correctly by the administration of the university.” SSMU VP External Sebastian Ronderos-Morgan also opposes the legislation. “We don’t believe that this is the manner in which the provincial government should be dealing with the [UQÀM] fiasco. They should not be creating a cookie-cutter model for how the [Board of Governors] of all post-secondary institutions should be composed,” he said. “Post-secondary institutions should be able to retain their autonomy in how they function and this is too much of a uniform solution.” Ronderos-Morgan added that the campaign to oppose the bill will be
conducted jointly by involved student groups, and will likely involve a student rally in early October and a letter-writing campaign. “We’re interested in retaining the autonomy of the different organizations to create the kind of campaign that they would like, that they feel would best suit their student body,” said Ronderos-Morgan. Because 15 of the 25 members of McGill’s Board of Governors are already independents, the University would not be immediately affected by the legislation. Prinicipal Heather Monroe-Blum and former Chancellor Dick Pound did, however, publicly oppose the legislation when it was being discussed in the National Assembly last winter. Representatives of the Parti libéral du Québec could not be reached for comment.
The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
Street youth fest finds new space Erin Hale The McGill Daily
estival de l’expression de la rue (FER) – a three-day event in support of Montreal street youth - was held last week at Parc de la Paix on the corner of St. Laurent and Renée Levesque. Despite initial difficulties finding space for the event. The festival, which focused on STI prevention and intervention, featured live music, workshops, and free food, as well as dice and skateboarding competitions. Each day featured a different multicultural theme, from hip-hop to punk music. The event was hosted by Pairs Aidants, a collective that works peerto-peer with youth, and includes many former street children. Marc Seren, a peer counselor at Pair Aidants, commented on the importance of the festival. “[The festival] is mostly a live window to show that street people can express themselves, and show that they can do positive things.” Although (FER) has been an important Montreal presence for thirteen years, an important partner from years past – UQÀM – opted out of participation this year. FER has traditionally been held at one of UQÀM’s parks, but members of Pairs Aidants said that this year, Claude Carbo, the university’s new director, was less than helpful.
Evelyn Gauthier, a project manager at Pairs Aidants, said that Carbo insisted there were too many events at UQÀM this summer — and put off making any concrete promises. Both Gauthier and Seren thought UQÀM’s reluctance might come from concern over the university’s image. “The directors said FER’s too polemical and [Carbo] needed something more sober” Seren said. Seren pointed out that this attitude was contrary to UQÀM’s reputation. “UQÀM’s supposed to be a university of the people.” After searching for a location, it was ultimately City Hall that offered the use of Parc de la Paix. The park is close to Ste. Catherine E., whose storefronts are often dotted by homeless or travelling youth during summer nights. UQÀM Director, Claude Carbo could not be reached for comment. According to Dans la Rue – an outreach program that provides front line and intervention services to street children – there are around 5,000 street youth in Montreal. The number, though, is notoriously difficult to calculate because of the varying degrees of homelessness experienced. Derek Nimetz, who hosted the dice competition, said the benefits of FER stretched beyond the realm of health and politics. “It’s not about social awareness. It’s more to give street kids a place to hang out, at least during the time of
the festival and to not get hassled by the cops,” Nimetz said. “These kids live a harsh life and have to deal with a lot of shit most of the time. If there can be three days a year when they can sit with their friends and don’t have to be hassled, that’s great.”
The event was funded in part by Santé Canada and CACTUS, the Montreal needle exchange, with additional logistical support provided by Dans la Rue and other volunteers. In total, around 20 organizations participated.
David Koch / The McGill Daily
Festivities include games and competitions.
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NEWS BRIEF SSMU loses parking revenues The University will take control of the parking lots within and beside the Shatner building this academic year. The lots were previously allocated to SSMU but have been appropriated as part of SSMU’s new lease with McGill, signed in 2006. It will result in a loss of $26,000 in revenues for SSMU, which has an annual operating budget of approximately $1.5 million. In an interview with the Daily last April, Deputy Provost (Student Life and Learning) Morton Mendelson said that the University is assuming control of the parking lots in order to gradually move toward its long-term vision of a car-free campus. “A number of people have raised this [car-free campus initiative] and the students have certainly raised it. The master plan talks about reducing vehicular traffic on campus,” Mendelson said. “The other issue is that the University sees [Shatner] as its own property.” VP Internal Sarah Olle said that SSMU has compensated for the lost revenue in its new budget so that it will not significantly affect campus life. “They are focussing on getting cars off of campus, which I think SSMU does support. We don’t like that we’ve lost control over the parking areas and the revenue that it generated for our operations, [but] we feel totally capable of handling this small hit to our revenue,” Olle said. — Niko Block
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The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
WHAT’S THE HAPS
Frosh as usual Science Frosh reprimanded
Sam Neylon The McGill Daily
cience Frosh was cut short Thursday when its beer tent was shut down for the day. Science Frosh leaders were also lectured briefly by McGill Security Services after one was caught giving alcohol to underage Froshies. “We want everyone to enjoy themselves in a safe manner, and unfortunately, sometimes we have to enforce some rules,” Pierre Barbarie, Associate Director of University Safety said, “We needed to do this because of a specific Frosh leader.” Omar El-Ghazzawy, Science Frosh Leader, recalled the incident. “[Security] was trying to cut some Froshie’s wristband off, and he starts running around yelling ‘you can’t catch me, you can’t catch me,’” El-Ghazzawy said. Frosh leader Danji Buck-Moore said participants were predictably upset because they had already paid $75 for unlimited beer and food. He did acknowledge, though, that Security was not completely wrong in its actions. “They’re kind of putting it on the Frosh leaders, but I don’t resent that. Apparently there were a couple of Frosh leaders yesterday and today
that were pretty aggressive with security and [organizational staff], and that’s too bad,” Buck-Moore said. “If there was just less attitude all around, I think everything would be much better.” Science Frosh leader Taylor Reid, however, was more agitated by the incident. “This [Frosh leader] had been told not to give underage kids drinks, but he was caught a second time. Now they’ve basically cut off all of Science Frosh, and punished everyone for this,” she said. However, the beer tent was reopened by Friday. “We had a great day at the beach, and everything’s getting sorted out,” said Kevin Peck, Science Organisational-Staff (O-Staff) coordinator. SSMU VP Internal Alex Brown tried to implement a policy of reusable mug use in order to reduce the amount of trash typically generated by the event. “We got all of the faculties on a mug system this year, so we’re cutting down on our use of plastic cups,” she said. “I also got [Faculty Frosh leaders] a lot of the contacts we have for more ethical purchasing and more organic suppliers.” Arts Frosh leader Zachary Burke, said, “There’s less trash because of the cups, but at the same time it creates huge organisational prob-
Evan Keyzer for The McGill Daily
Froshies gather on lower field lems. It was kind of a shitshow yesterday. The only people who got beer or food were those cutting in line.” Science Frosh, however, did not adhere to the mug policy as persistently as some of the other faculty Froshes. “Unfortunately they still serve all the beer in plastic cups at the [Science] tent because they want to get it out fast, which takes priority over the environmental situation for them,” said Buck-Moore.
At the end of the night the Faculty O-Staff were tasked with picking up and sorting the trash, aided by McGill staff. “O-Staff is the bread and butter of Frosh,” said AUS President Karina Gould. A problem arose during Wednesday’s clean-up when one of McGill’s vacuum-equipped cleaning vehicles began sucking up trash before O-Staff could sort out the recycling.
University urges professors to accommodate sick students The McGill Daily Seasonal flu season is rapidly approaching and universities across North America are gearing up for the arrival of the H1N1 “swine flu” virus, whose presence in Canada was recently declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. McGill has been working throughout the summer to prepare for the possibility of crippling absenteeism this year. The University’s emergency contingency plans stress good hygiene, nutrition, and the importance of individuals staying home if they develop symptoms. “Early indications are that the virus is not that strong,” said Wayne Wood, Associate Director of University Safety (Environment Health and Safety), and newly appointed Chair of McGill’s Pandemic Contingency Planning Group. “[But] it could be an exceptional semester and year. Professors should be prepared to reschedule [classes], and students should be flexible.” Compensating for a depleted workforce, accommodating profes-
sors and students who are unable to come to class, and limiting the spread of the virus rank highest among the Planning Group’s concerns. More lectures will be recorded so students ill at home won’t fall behind, and efforts are being made to educate the community about sanitation and hygiene. McGill’s particular environment could facilitate a quick spread of the disease. “Students are targeted most by the virus,” said Pierre-Paul Tellier, Director of McGill Student Health Services. “The University environment will expose people on ongoing levels.” The severe winter in Montreal could contribute to the spread of the virus, Tellier explained, when people are driven into enclosed environments in large numbers. The situation could be aggravated by a lack of diligence with hand sanitation and “cough etiquette” — sneezing into a tissue or one’s elbow, rather than into the hands. Tellier, however, noted that compared to other countries, Canada and Canadians may be more resistant to infection. “Canada has much better sanitary conditions. People are healthier.”
Montreal World Film Festival August 27- September 7 Latin Quarter The festival will be screening at five cinemas throughout the Latin Quarter, with outdoor shows nightly at Place des Arts. Tickets cost $10 each, or 10 for $60. For a full list of show times visit ffm-montreal.org PGSS Speed Dating August 31-September 11, 6:30 p.m. Thomson House Life as a TA getting you down? If you’re a graduate student, you can make new friends or find a special someone at speed dating.
McGill prepares for flu pandemic Henry Gass
The Planning Group is considering McGill residences the most vulnerable area on campus. Michael Porritt, Executive Director, Residence and Student Housing, acknowledged in an email that there were three confirmed cases of H1N1 in McGill residences over the summer. “Cleanliness, student life, and maintaining the application process for the next year” are Residence and Student Housing’s top priorities, Porritt told the Daily in an email. “We encourage staff and students to be aware of their own role in keeping themselves and our community healthy: handwashing, use of hand sanitizer, proper rest and nutrition, and staying home if you become symptomatic.” Floor Fellows and Residence staff will work with ill students to prevent spread of the virus by bringing students food and helping them communicate with their faculties. Wood cited three earlier H1N1 pandemics in 1968, 1957, and 1918, and said that information from those incidences has helped in preparations for this coming wave. According to Wood, there was a 30-35 per cent absentee rate in schools during the
1957 pandemic. Current university students are generally too young to have been exposed to earlier pandemics and have not developed antibodies to resist the H1N1 strain, leaving them more vulnerable. McGill usually experiences a 15 per cent absentee rate during the seasonal flu season. Emergency contingencies will be exercised if the rate exceeds 20 per cent across the University. McGill has been working closely with other universities in preparation for this unique flu season, and has joined a list-serv started by the University of Ottawa for this purpose. Cooperation is also being facilitated through the Conférence des Recteurs et des Principaux des Universités du Québec and the Ministry of Education. Whatever the severity of the virus’s impact this coming year, many consider the contingencies developed by McGill in the past few months a needed development. “All the measures being taken are good things we should do anyway,” said Wood. “It’s a good way to educate people. It’s a healthy exercise to go through.”
Observing Ramadan Tuesday, September 1, 7:30 p.m. Shatner, 2nd and 4th floor The McGill Muslim Students’ Association will hold evening prayers Monday to Saturday in the Clubs Lounge (4th floor) of the SSMU Shatner Building. Prayers will be followed by free evening meals served on weekdays at the 2nd floor cafeteria of Shatner — bring Tupperware. Getting Things Done Sustainably Wednesday, Sept. 2, 7 p.m. Leacock 232 The Goethe-Institut is holding a panel on social entrepreneurship and environmental sustainablity with Dr. Rafael Ziegler and Dr. François Brouard, of the Sprott Centre for Social Enterprises (SCSE). Les Tam-Tams Sundays Parc Jeanne-Mance, Mont Royal Every Sunday, head to Parc Jeanne-Mance for this free, unofficial festival until September 28. Join in for drumming, music, dancing, and a visit to the market.
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The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
Transcending gender and sex binaries Quinn Albaugh
n August 19, Caster Semenya easily won the gold medal in the women’s 800 metres at the World Championships in Athletics. Since then, the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) and the mainstream media have dogged Semenya with allegations that she is, in fact, a man. The former has gone so far as to require Semenya to undergo sexdetermination testing to prove she is eligible to compete. The resulting media coverage laid bare a number of our society’s preconceptions regarding sex and gender. The first set of these preconceptions postulates that gender and sex are the same thing. Neither the IAAF nor the mainstream media have distinguished between sex and gender in discussing Semenya (usually they have preferred “gender,” to appear more politically correct or to disas-
sociate the concept from the act of sexual intercourse). But the IAAF would be wise to note that sex is what one’s body is like; gender is how one behaves socially. It’s particularly useful to distinguish between these two ideas because, contrary to popular belief, someone may have a gender that does not match social expectations for their sex. For example, someone may have a stereotypically “female” body yet have a sense of themself as being more “male.” Because gender isn’t physical, but rather a set of behavioural choices, the media’s penchant for referring to this test as “gender testing” is wrongheaded. The second set of preconceptions is that all “men” will appear to be “masculine” and all “women,” “feminine.” This notion is related to the first idea, that gender and sex are synonymous. The IAAF says that Semenya had to undergo the testing due to “ambiguity”—meaning that her appearance is too “masculine.” Speaking with the media, her chal-
lengers have pointed to Semenya’s physical appearance, stating they do not consider her a woman. The third set of preconceptions is that “feminine women” will attempt to match up with social norms of femininity. These gender norms cannot be separated from racial norms. The standard of femininity is the same ideal reinforced in white, Western society: white women are the pinnacle of femininity. Women of colour are consequently measured by this standard, despite obvious cultural differences over definitions of beauty. Semenya is black and of South African heritage. We need to ask ourselves whether she would have faced the same allegations if she were white. The fourth set of preconceptions is that sex and gender are easy to determine and that all people fit neatly into two categories. However, there’s no clear definition of sex and no easy way to sort certain people into two categories. How should we define sex? Should we use genitalia?
A significant number of people have ambiguous genitalia. Should we use chromosomes? While in the majority of cases sex chromosomes come in either pairs of XX or XY, there exists a wide variety of other possibilities, including just X or XXY or XYY, or even four sex chromosomes. Should we use hormones? People with higher levels of the male hormone androgen tend to possess more developed musculature. However, the IAAF allows women with androgen-producing tumours, for example, to compete, even though this would most likely give them a muscle advantage over those who don’t have such tumours. In short, sex isn’t easy to categorize. According to the Intersex Society of North America, about one per cent of births do not fit easily into standard male or female categories. People who don’t conform to sex expectations are called intersex— and they’re more numerous than you’d think.
Gender isn’t easy to categorize, either. People experience gender in a wide variety of ways. Some people don’t identify as male or female; others find their gender fluctuates from one moment to the next. “Male” and “female” are inadequate categories given the inherent mutability of gender. People who don’t fit gender expectations are called transgender. Furthermore, these preconceptions only serve to exclude and alienate those who don’t conform to them. This is harmful to both intersex and transgender people, along with all others who don’t fit into such restrictive categories. We need to revise our expectations regarding sex and gender— because they’re harmful to those who don’t fit them, and because they fail to accurately represent the real world.
Quinn Albaugh is a U3 Political Science student. Write Quinn at email@example.com.
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The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
Echoes out of Hoodstock Festival commemorating anniversary of Villanueva’s death fosters dialogue The McGill Daily
ord on the street is, Montreal North is a bad place to be. People call it a ghetto and speak fearfully of going there; it’s the butt of jokes about gang violence and racism. Wanting to know if this bad rep was deserved, I took the hour-long trip from my home in the Mile-End to Parc Aimé-Léonard for the first annual Montreal North Social Forum. Hoodstock, as the forum is informally called, took place on August 8-9 to mark the one-year anniversary of Freddy Villanueva’s death. Villanueva, an 18-year-old resident of Montreal North, was shot to death by two police officers after an altercation between the cops and a group of youths. A demonstration the following day descended into a riot. A year later, with the coroner’s investigation set to restart soon, community organizers were hoping to use the commemoration as a launching pad for a broader discussion on revitalizing Montreal North as a whole. My first impressions of the neighbourhood were positive: the beautiful blinking lights of Henri-Bourassa metro, the life-affirming sunshine
that bathed the streets, or the picturesque, modest houses around the park. But this prettiness belied the neighbourhood’s worsening problems — chiefly, the relationship between the authorities and locals. Witness the sign, which I’d not seen elsewhere in the city, on a community centre: “Tout graffiteur sera poursuivi en justice.” Though the neighbourhood isn’t “too bad,” according to Nicolas, a young Italo-Spanish Quebecker who was working at a food stand, there are problems. He warned me not to wear red in the borough, recounting how he was confronted on the street once by the Bloods because his T-shirt shared their signature colour. Gangs control several streets, and drugs are a major part of the local economy. Even if many start dealing because they want to rise out of poverty, there are still a lot of “profiteers” — like those who turned the Villanueva demonstration into a riot last summer. It’s not the police that are at the root of these issues, according to Luck Mervil, the headliner at the rap concert that capped the first day of Hoodstock. Mervil told RadioCanada that it’s “poverty, lack of education and lack of organization,” that are most to blame. To redress these problems, the
community needs to turn inward and focus on itself. It can’t look to the police to buttress education or build the local economy, as Will Prosper, of the activist group Montréal-Nord Républik, told the Canadian Press the day before Hoodstock. The speakers on the second day of the social forum agreed. Kwameh Thomas, Shekhem Tehuti, and Kapois Lamort spoke at length about afrocentric education, arguing that it should be implemented in Montreal-Nord. They were followed by Jafrikayiti (otherwise known as Jean St-Vil), who railed against institutional racism in Canada, such as the lack of acceptance of African degrees here, calling for an “unchained youth” to combat the problems facing blacks in Montreal. “Why are you out on the streets pushing drugs for the Hell’s Angels when you are the descendants of kings?” Jafrikayiti asked his audience. He and the other Hoodstock speakers borrowed liberally from the rhetoric of American black nationalists of the sixties and seventies and spoke of the need to build community independence and rebuild black self-esteem, independent of those in power. However, the tense relationship between police and youth in Montreal North is an inescapable fact
of life here. According to a report published in Le Devoir this summer, racial profiling remains rampant in the borough. Nicolas, the young man working the food stand, affirmed that things are tense. “The cops will never be your friend,” he said. “They’re not warm.” I can’t help but think that community revitalization initiatives like those proposed by the Hoodstock speakers won’t solve this problem — witness the Henry Louis Gates Jr. affair this summer. So long as the relationship between police and citizens remains adversarial, rather than amicable, progress will be hard to come by.
The Service de Police de la Ville de Montreal has made some recent steps in the right direction, but bureaucratic tribunals – which have not yet convicted one officer of racial profiling — can only do so much. There needs to be a mea culpa from the cops, and a change in attitude. The Devoir article points to the positive example of St-Michel, where the police are known for their sociability and friendliness. If efforts at fixing up the neighbourhood are going to succeed, the authorities will need to integrate into the community the police and stop acting like they’re keeping order in a colonized land.
Church of the Madonna della Difensa —or Notre Dame de la Defense — close to Jean-Talon metro. The church’s red brick sets it apart from almost all other Montreal cathedrals, and its odd, yet charming mosaiced windows add to its unique aesthetic. Built in 1919 by Italian immigrants to Montreal, it is a National Historic Site of Canada and a landmark of Romanesque architecture. Some parts of Rosemont are completely residential, some dense with shops and cafés, while others are swallowed by stretches of industrial landscapes and wide intersections that house restaurants at former gasstation locations. One such stretch led me to the Tunnel de la Mort. This ominous landmark, also known as “Death Tunnel,” stands looming at d’Iberville and St. Joseph, the border between the Plateau and Rosemont. Originally surrounded by three railway overpasses approaching from the north, west, and east, it quickly earned notoriety as a dangerous intersection for pedestrians, motorists, and cyclists to navigate. On my bike, I gripped my handlebars and clenched my teeth as I rode through this death trap; its caving walls and zipping traffic provide little space and almost no time for any cyclist to recover from a fall. If you trip in the tunnel, you’re toast. Between 1992 and
2002, over 250 serious accidents were reported at the intersection. It is best to leave Rosemont in cheery spirits, however, and cheer is an easy sentiment to muster at the Jean-Talon market, nestled in Petite Italie, in the northwest corner of Rosemont. This open-air, year-long market is impossible not to love and cherish. Full of hustle and bustle, free samples, cheap veggies, bulk vendors, fishmongers, and cute Montrealers from all angles, one can’t help but bask in its very glow. Every laneway is filled to its brim with inexpensive produce and lush vegetation, much of it local and organic. In the cold, bitter Montreal winter there is hot chocolate and honey wine for sale and for sampling. Surrounding the market are spice shops, butchers, and bakeries, and a string of delectable dishes can be bought, ranging from South American, Italian, African, and Portuguese fare. Shopping at JeanTalon is good for your wallet, body, mind, and soul; I never leave the market without a smile on my face and food in my hands. I finished my day at the market. It was evening and the sun was setting over Notre Dame de la Defense. I said goodbye to Rosemont, confident I will see her again. If you feel stuck in the McGill bubble, a trip to Rosemont could be the cure to your cabin fever.
Justin K. Wong for the MGill Daily
William M. Burton
Pedaling “La Petite Patrie” Tour de Montréal Last year, the Daily sent writers to various metro stations around Montreal in a series called “Bursting the Bubble.” By exploring the areas surrounding metro stops, the Daily provided readers with a snapshot view of some of Montreal’s most interesting and unique neighbourhoods. This year, we’re continuing the tradition of breaking out of the McGIll chains that bind and exploring this belle ville of ours, but we’re focussing on a different mode of transport — bicycles. In this series, which we’ve cleverly named “Le Tour de Montreal,” writers will attempt to explore the ins and outs of the diverse cultural pockets Montreal has to offer, armed with nothing but their intuition and a pair of wheels.
Aditi Ohri The McGill Daily
he neighbourhood of Rosemont-La Petite Patrie is named after somebody’s mother. M. Dandurand, an ambitious and successful entrepreneur and the son of a woman named Rose, founded and developed Rosemont in 1905. After its amalgamation into Montreal in 1910, the borough was affectionately termed “La Petite-Patrie” in ref-
erence to a téléroman of the same name by Quebecois author Claude Jasmin. Jasmin saw the neighbourhood as a homeland for its exiles, giving a nod to its immigrant population of Italians, Mexicans, Greeks, Jews, and Portuguese ghettoized by, yet living amidst the Quebecois. Cultural pockets remain, such as La Petite Italie and the Portuguese neighbourhood along Saint Zotique. However, Rosemont has grown to become Montreal’s third most populated borough, housing approximately 133, 618
people, a majority of them Quebecois. Rosemont stretches from Hutchison and Beaubien over to Rue Lacordaine, past the Olympic Stadium, reaching down to Parc Maisonneuve and sloping along Sherbrooke East to meet Rachel. Peppered with parks, pools, libraries, gardens and winding alleyways, Rosemont seems a wonderful place to live. Biking along Rachel one late summer afternoon, I took a trip to Rosemont via Parc Maisonneuve. The park’s path — a hassle free ride through lush green space — led me to find Montreal’s botanical gardens and insectarium. The gardens are dreamy enough for a first date; I left with the scents of lilacs, orchids, bonsais, and begonias floating through my senses. Next-door, the insectarium proved to be a museum crawling with exhibitions and displays about every beetle, bug, and butterfly I would never have thought to be real — a great place to lose your lunch while learning. I left the park and continued along the bike path to 31eme, following it west to St. Zotique, a street bustling with activity. On Beaubien, I passed Cinema Beaubien, an old and beautiful independent Quebecois theatre playing francophone talent and offering student discounts. Another Rosemont gem I encountered is the
The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
The many faces of 2Fik
Coming this September to the Galerie SAS will be “Équations et idylles identitaires,” Canadian performance artist 2Fik’s first step into the realm of photography. 2Fik’s latest exhibition promises to break boundaries both personal — his work is informed by his mixed heritage as an “Arab, Canadian, French, homosexual” — and artistic in nature, extending theatric and cinematic tropes onto his new medium. By carefully transposing his many alter-egos — including gender-bending “drag queers” Alice Terrick and Gisele Bün Laden — onto single photographs, 2Fik filters ubiquitous social issues through his unique viewpoint. This allows him to offer fresh perspectives without crushing his audience beneath the weight of ethics. Indeed, a thread of whimsy
seems to course through his pictures, as his unlikely personae — of which the “Fagger Rangers” stand out, as do their nemeses, the “Mulsulmen” — share scenes of various complexity. — Nicholas Boisvert-Novak “Equations et idylles identitaires” runs through the September 26 at the Galerie SAS (372 Ste-Catherine O. # 416).
Local Band Love-Balms Existential Murk At Divan Orange This Tuesday, Montreal garage rockers Kill the Lights will be joined by Burning Brides at Le Divan Orange for the release of their second album, Fog Area. Fresh off their two year stint in Toronto — spent touring
with artists such as K-OS and You Say Party! We Say Die! — the band is finally coming home to hone their sound and carve out their niche in the Montreal indie scene. Kill the Lights is not a band inclined towards subtlety or modesty. Their press release describes Fog Area as “the story of a fight against darkness, of a search for gold amid modern urban decay, of hallucinations in shadowy forests, of love balming existential murk, of total terror in the face of the unknown.” Listening to the album, we can’t say we heard all that— but we did hear some solid indie pop that’s worth listening to. One track in particular —“Prince Pang” — stands out from the rest, a fuzzed-out trip with a driving bet that calls to mind fellow Montreallers We Are Wolves. At the very least, the band seems to be moving forward from their more formulaic Buffalo of Love and its
tween-poetry song titles (“You Took My Knife,” “Palest Form of Sabotage, Ceremony in the Basement,” etc., etc.). File Kill the Lights under “bands to watch.” Fog Area should make for a good show, and the loud and raucous Burning Brides will make sure things don’t get boring. — Ian Beattie Launch party September 2 at Divan Orange (4234 St. Laurent). Fog Area will be released in stores September 9.
After All and Before Everything The moon, after all, And before everything is A rhythm Not my own That pulls me Wandering into The street at full moon And glowing I remain. What of the moon’s ability To reflect an unseen Light? And me, prostrate On the cool concrete Warming to this night – The sky Looms larger, the moon Hits fuller. I awake to nocturne – The claustrophobia of darkness Recedes beyond the Fields, birches are gently Set ablaze, a moth appears Out of the night and into my face, the washed-out Pale road singing, white fire! white fire! Receptors, we are only Always awaking to The fire in this Day of night These eyes receive. The softest light Glows strongest for we the chorus, The moon and I and all that sings
“Yes, this is where we be.” And now here I return On two spinning wheels Rolling through these Open spaces The moon over my shoulder. —Livingston Miller
The McGill Daily, Monday, August 31, 2009
The User’s Guide to The Daily A
s McGill’s oldest and bestknown student publication, the McGill Daily is the hub of campus news, culture, ideas, and debate. If something’s going down, you’ll hear about it here first. Since the first issue rolled off the presses in 1911, the McGill Daily has evolved from a daily sports results handout to a twice-weekly comprehensive newspaper that informs, subverts, and entertains. The Daily and its sister publication, le Délit français, are funded by a direct student levy: $5 per undergraduate student and $3.35 per graduate student each semester. This means, first of all, that this is your paper. We are here to represent you and your issues to your community. The fact that we are funded directly by students also makes us completely autonomous — we are the only independent English language newspaper at McGill. We are tied neither to the University, nor any student association, but only to the student body at large. So you can count on us to provide all the information you need and to hold the powers that be accountable for their actions. Look for us on stands across campus every Monday and Thursday, or better yet, come join us. You’ll get a tonne of newspaper-related experience and you may even get free stuff. Come by our Shatner basement bunker (B-24), give us a call (398-6784), or visit our table during Activities Night.
How the Daily works As soon as you pay your student fees, you become a member of the Daily Publications Society (DPS), the autonomous, not-for-profit organization that operates the McGill Daily and le Délit. Every year, McGill students elect six members to the DPS’s ninemember Board of Directors, which takes care of the papers’ financial and legal matters. The students-at-large are joined on the board by three editorial representatives. All DPS members (most students) are entitled to attend board meetings, address the board, and collect signatures to initiate a DPS referendum. To find out the date and location of the next meeting, call 398-6790
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Daily Editors and Staff As a member of the DPS, each student can contribute articles to the Daily and become a staff member. You become a Daily staffer by contributing six published articles, photos, graphics, or by helping out for three production nights. Each spring, Daily staff elect an editorial board from among the ranks. Because the Daily is a democratic, nonhierarchical organization, editors have no more voting power than staff members. If you would like to take part in our weekly meetings, the staff and editors of the Daily meet every Monday at 6 p.m. in the QPIRG building, 3647 University.
in the whole paper. Within the section, you’ll find in-depth, critical analyses of power and privilege You’ll also find personal narratives and creative works as well as the occasional kitten photo shoot.
Mind&Body investigates issues of health, wellness, and nutrition and how they relate to the power structures that shape our society.
This is our multi-purpose page of facts, games, ephemera, fake news, and other rib-cracking tidbits that we’d like to bring to your attention. With crosswords, snippets from our copious archives, and revealing extracts of real life, Compendium! will slake your thirst for giggles served up fresh on a platter for your conspicuous consumption. Also, there will be comics. And blood. Send your hilarious ideas to email@example.com.
Letters to the Editor
Sci+Tech scours the universe for bits of interesting matter. Working for this section means considering the impact of scientific research on marginalized populations and writing about technological and scientific advances.
The Letters to the Editor section provides a forum for readers to express their ideas about Daily content and McGill life. The Daily promises to print every letter it receives from DPS members, provided the content is not racist, sexist, homophobic, libelous, or otherwise hateful. Letters must be sent from your McGill email account, signed, and include your contact information, year, and program at McGill. (We will not print your contact info). All letters must be under 300 words. We may edit submissions for brevity and clarity. If the letter is too long, we may ask you to publish it as a Hyde Park. You can email letters to letters@mcgilldaily. com or drop them off in our office.
This is the section that puts the “news” in “newspaper.” We cover issues that affect students directly, as well as pertinent events that simply are not getting enough play in mainstream press—from the campus to the national stage. To get involved, come to a news meeting in the Shatner cafeteria, Mondays at 4:30 p.m. or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The newest section of The Daily, Sports is looking for writers to explore the sports world beyond of the highlight reel.
Culture Like art? Good, so do we. The Culture section is where to turn for a critical look at current goings-on in visual art, theatre, music, and the like, as well as analyses of broader cultural phenomena. We’re interested in the ways culture intersects with our lives— how it affects us, and how we affect it. And we’re not just about “art”— we’re also interested in communities, characters, and city life in general. If this sounds like a vision you could get behind, come write for the Culture section.
Features The Features section comprises the salacious centrefold of every issue. It’s got the longest, most probing articles
Photography It has often been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. At the Daily, we believe that a photo is worth 1,200 words, or 1,400 if we’re short on copy. We have photos that go with stories, photos that go on their own, photo essays, et cetera.
Layout and Design Layout and Design is the invisible hand that guides you through the newspaper. Does one story jump out at you more than another? That’s L&D magic.
Hyde Parks Named after the famous soapbox in London, where townsfolk would voice their opinions on the issues of the day, the Daily’s Hyde Park lets students and members of the McGill community express ideas on any topic that excites, enlightens or enrages them. Hyde Parks can be up to 500 words and can cover a wider variety of subjects than letters to the editor. Unlike Letters to the Editor, we make no guarantee to print Hyde Park submissions. Email potential submissions to email@example.com.
Graphics Like to make visual art? Graphics will pair you up with an article so you can represent a story with original artwork. Drop us a line at graphics@ mcgilldaily.com.
Editorials, Comments, Columns Editorials are unsigned statements of opinion that are approved by the voting staff of the Daily. They reflect the
position of the newspaper on issues of local, national, or international importance. Comment pieces are the opinions of individual staff members. There are also columns, which are regular reflections and criticisms penned in a more personal voice by the Daily’s columnists. Columnists are encouraged to present a wide variety of opinions and viewpoints in order to stimulate discussion and debate both in the Daily and on campus. Their views do not represent the opinions of the editorial board.
Canadian University Press The McGill Daily is a founding member of the Canadian University Press (CUP). Modeled after the Canadian Press, CUP was the first nationwide student newswire in the world. CUP now has over 100 member papers from coast to coast, and all member papers participate in a daily exchange of news, sports, arts, and more. This means we have the latest scoops on national issues from student journalists across the country.
Published on Jan 7, 2011
pays off Start the week with 10% off your grocery bill when you buy $50 or more.* Mondays only upon presentation of your student card. Rue S...