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If I'm honest, this is not how I envisioned OPENWIDE would begin its Vol. 21 journey. Nonetheless, the uncertainty of COVID-19 and its repercussions on student life has provided tons of inspiration for an issue full of the creativity, inquisivity, and fun that we've come to expect from our wonderful faculty. If you're new to FIMS, welcome! You're going to love it here. Expand your mind, follow your passions, and allow yourself to grow during your time at Western. The best things that have come from my time here are the wonderful friendships I've been able to foster (some honourable mentions are the countless Karl Marx jokes and jalapeño cheddar Spoke bagels, though). If I can offer some advice, it's this: be yourself, find your people, and don't take anything too seriously.


Vic Giguere Editor-In-Chief

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Victoria Giguere


SENIOR EDITORS Grace Armstrong Safiya Chagani Marah Minor Kevin Spiegelberg

RESIDENT WRITERS Sarena Akhter Jessie Chabot Lauren Medeiros Jay Medland Lexie Misterski Joshua Mohajer Tia Sacks Katie Shapcott Courtney Stone Netanya Thomas

DIGITAL CONTENT CURATORS Emily Anderson Grace Maury Maya Simon


LEAD GRAPHICS Jumana Labib RESIDENT ARTISTS Anastasiia Fedorova Jessie Li PHOTOGRAPHERS Alexia Cain Ali Hills Max Shay


PODCAST MANAGER Zoë Abernethy PODCAST EDITORS Anne Cowley Jay Gerantonis Taylor Ross

GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Jordan Berger Ewen Cameron Erin Grace Cassie Kaczmarski SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR Alexa Hawkes-Sackman


Student Resources Back to School Playlist FIMS First Year FAQ Online Learning: Tips and Resources for Students During the Pandemic Anarchist Cross-Stitch Patterns Origins of Pride in Relation to BLM Netflix Killed the Video Store: Are Movie Theatres Next? The Relationship between Poverty, Culture, and Crime Study Tips and Tricks for Surviving First Year Radical Youths in a Practical World: Where Does FIMS Fit In? Quarantine: A Blessing and a Curse for the Creative Mind Divadomination: Women Reclaiming Pop Music in 2020 Quarantining With my Brain: A Note on Self-Reflection Increase in Gender Based Violence Due to COVID-19 Walking Trails in London Zine Headlines

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Victoria Giguere Maya Simon Emily Anderson Marah Minor Grace Armstrong Jay Medland Kevin Spiegelberg Joshua Mohajer Courtney Stone Lexie Misterski Tia Sacks Jay Medland Lauren Medeiros Netanya Thomas Netanya Thomas Victoria Giguere

Cover art by Anastasiia Fedorova Back cover art by Max Shay and Alexia Cain

CHECK OUT OUR SOCIALS! WANT TO CONTRIBUTE? We're always looking for new contributors! Check out openwidezine.com for more information on how to contribute your writing, art, photography, film, or whatever else you're passionate about!

instagram: @openwidezine openwidezine@gmail.com openwidezine.com


Hey! Nice to meet you, we're the FIMS Student Council. This Year may look a little different than you expected - it's going to be an adventure! Have questions? Comments? Want to chat about Marx or McLuhan? We're here for anything and everything. You can find us @FIMSSC on all socials - let's chat!

If you've got questions or concerns about courses, your module, or anything else going on in your life, FIMS Undergraduate Student Services is a fantastic resource to get more information! Their physical office is FNB 2001, but with COVID-19 building closures, you can reach out at fims@uwo.ca to book an appointment to chat!

If you're reading this it means that you have made the incredible choice of joining the wonderfully eclectic community that is FIMS! We know this year is probably not the experience that you were expecting and that the whole world feels pretty uncertain. However, what we know for sure is this: we have a team of incredible individuals who could not be more excited to welcome you to Western! Your sophs are here to make sure your transition to university is as smooth as possible and that you have a bangin' first year! Find us on insta @fimssophteam! 4


t s i l y a l p

Maya Simon

This playlist takes you on a motivational journey with sounds ranging from Hip-Hop and R&B, to rock and pop. The collection varies in genres but all of the songs have one thing in common, their motivational message. This is the perfect song selection to keep you motivated while getting school work done. One Man Can Change the World – Big Sean 4:14 Started From the Bottom – Drake 2:53 All I Do Is Win – DJ Khaled 3:52 Stronger – Kanye West 5:11 Finish Line / Drown – Chance the Rapper 6:46 Bigger Than Me – Big Sean 4:52   Bounce Back – Big Sean 3:42     Good Life – Kanye West 3:27 Dna. – Kendrick Lamar 3:05 Icon – Jaden 3:40 Power – Kanye West 4:52 Survivor - Destiny’s Child 3:49 You Gotta Be - Des'ree 4:00 When You Believe – Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston 4:33 What Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong 2:19 Wavin’ Flag – K’naan 3:40 Here Comes the Sun – Glee Cast 3:00 We are the Champions – Queen 3:00 Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey 4:10 I Got You – James Brown & The Famous Flames 2:48 I Like That – Janelle Monáe 3:20 Three Little Birds – Bob Marley & The Wailers 3:01 Lovely Day – Bill Withers 4:15 Celebration (Single Version) – Kool & The Gang 4:58


FIMS First Year FAQ (with an SAO Advisor) By Emily Anderson Like most of us, my summer was coloured by Covid-19. In addition to managing masks and hand sanitizer, I connected digitally with up to 10 incoming Western students each weekday. As a Summer Academic Orientation Leader, my job was very different from previous years’ SAO, as the program transformed to a full online delivery mode. Each day, I met via Zoom with first- year students enrolled across the full range of Western programs -- and answered another dozen student questions over email. Although I chatted with students from all faculties, I always made a special connection with FIMS students. We seemed to have an instant bond, an immediate friendship – and of course I was able to put a personal spin on the information I gave them. Here are some common questions asked by our newest FIMS students:

Did you like MIT 1020E and MIT 1025F/G? What are these courses about? These courses are the perfect introduction to MIT and answer the fundamental question: What the heck is MIT really all about? MIT 1020E explores important theorists, terms, and concepts you will hear over and over again throughout your degree. You’ll learn about concepts and names such as hegemony, political economy, Karl Marx and Technoculture, which will become natural to your vocabulary by third year. MIT 1025F/G is also a great foundational course that teaches you how to critically think about the media we consume. This is a course I wish was taught earlier in my education, as I think the information is important to everyone in our digital world.

What non-FIMS courses did you take in first year that pair well with MIT? I usually recommend these elective courses as they compliment FIMS courses: Women Studies 1020E, 1021F/G, 1022 F/G, 1023 F/G, 1024 F/G: Women Studies courses examine how factors such as sex, gender, sexuality, race, class and (dis)ability impact our daily lives and upbringing. These courses go into depth about how women are represented in the media, which of course is a key theme of MIT as well. Film 1020: Who wouldn’t love a course that requires watching movies every week? This course critically approaches films to encourage critical thinking while consuming video. Computer Science 1033A/B: This multimedia communication course teaches production skills such as website design, photoshop and my favourite, creating gifs from scratch!


What kind of job can I get with my FIMS degree? There are lots of answers to this question with so many directions you can take within the faculty. Social media marketing, advertising, graphic design, video production, public relations, communications and journalism -- just to name a few. In my experience, the courses you take in your upper years will direct you towards the fields you love, and those you are less fond of. FIMS has a wide variety of courses and internship opportunities in the above areas where you can explore your passions and talents.

How do I stay in contact with professors or TAs if all my classes are online? Two Words: Office. Hours. Professors and teaching assistants are willing to meet outside of lecture, you just have to ask. They will hold office hours and see students by appointment during a certain window of time (most likely through Zoom this year). This one-on-one meeting is perfect for getting extra help on course content, going over confusing theorist’s readings, essay brainstorming or simply just to make a connection. I know it can be intimidating, but I believe it has helped my marks tremendously. Take advantage of this networking opportunity that is right at your fingertips.

How do I meet friends in FIMS? Outside of FIMS? Getting involved is quite simply the easiest way to connect with other people in your faculty, as well as others. One of the best ways to do so? Clubs. The University Student Council offers more than 200 clubs to choose from. From fashion, dance, charity, knitting and even tea there is literally a place for everyone. I have tried a variety of clubs in my University career; I’ve met lots of friends that way. Keep an eye on the USC’s social media to learn more about delivery methods (online or small gathering) for clubs this year.

How do I avoid geese attacks? Take the long way around them, even if it means being late to class. Trust me, it’s worth it.



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IN E D I R P F O S N I ORIG ON TO BLM I T A L By Jay Medland RE In this politically revolutionary time, the discourse surrounding racism and police brutality is taking a frontal stance on the world stage with the public demanding change. As the protesting continues, it is important for the queer community to reflect on the history that ignited the political change for LGBTQ+ individuals. Protests and riots are the true spark that founded the beginning of change, and those protests were largely fronted by black and latinx individuals in the trans* and gender non-conforming community.

The origins of pride stem from the Stonewall riots that took place in June 1969. It was there that trans women of colour and drag queens fronted what would be a revolutionary protest that would make international headlines and uproot new activism for what was the “gay and lesbian rights� movement at the time. What inspired these riots was the brutalizing actions of the New York police, that targeted the marginalized queer community and attempted to shut down the community’s existence. Heteronormative ideals of gender were slated into law, making gender non-conformance a crime that targeted the queer community, making them more vulnerable to assault and mistreatment from the state.

However, on the night of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn and its regular queer gatherers had had enough. The rioting broke out following a raid against the bar that left many queer people being targeted and arrested by police for their attendance at the nightclub or their gender-nonconforming attire. These riots continued for 4 more nights, as individuals like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera began to escalate and organize the movement of defiance against the police officers. The riots called for legal equality for queer individuals, including the legalization of LGBTQ+ spaces and drag performance. What founded these riots came down to the legal and institutionalized discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community, that left the community vulnerable socially and politically.


As our world continues to progress in shifting these institutions to an intersectional and equitable remodel, it is necessary that those in the LGBTQ+ community comprehend and support the Black Lives Matter movement. The protests and riots that are often demonized in the news, are the true foundation for uprooting a political system designed to target marginalized groups. For any queer person sitting at home and lacking the comprehension to understand the actions of the movement, they are doing a disservice to those in queer history who fought for their political rights that exist today. Queer and drag culture stems from the black queer community’s ballroom scene. The ballroom scene was a place for queer and gender-nonconforming people to gather and express themselves authentically in what was an origin of “safe spaces� for queer people. Most of our lingo, fashion, and political foundations stem from the work of black queer and trans* people that we continue to benefit from today. For many white queer folks, the lack of intersectional comprehension leaves racial minorities in the queer community on the sidelines, as progress is only defined by queer liberation without accounting for other aspects of identity like race and disability. The disregard and ignorance towards racism in the LGBTQ+ community is a contributing factor that continuously upholds white supremacy and racial discrimination. As the LGBTQ+ community continues to push forward agendas of equality, it is necessary that others are not left behind. Intersectional political approaches are necessary to bringing forth the equity desired for all human beings. So if you are someone within the community who feels the need to criticize or question the actions of the black lives matter movement, I urge to consider the following: pride started as a riot and continues to be a political protest regardless of governmental support, the foundations of our rights came from the work of racialized minorities in our community, and for many being queer is not as visibly targetable in comparison to skin colour. Black Lives Matter. Black Queer Lives Matter. Black Trans Lives Matter. And we all as a community need to do better to uplift our own.


NETFLIX KILLED THE VIDEO STORE: ARE MOVIE THEATRES NEXT? Moviegoers, prepare to eat your last eight-dollar popcorn – As theatre attendance continues to decline and streaming platform subscribership reaches record highs, COVID might catalyze the end of multiplex theatres.

KEVIN SPIEGELBERG Everyone had their moment where the severity of COVID-19 set in; where the life-altering implications of the virus became apparent to them. For some, it was when Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks tested positive. For many people, it was when the NBA season was suspended. For others, it was when upcoming film releases were pushed or postponed indefinitely. COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on virtually every aspect of our collective lives and it has the potential to change the way society works and entertains fundamentally. There is a strong indication that it is overhauling Hollywood’s film distribution and exhibition model. The ‘tech’ giant Netflix killed Blockbuster, could movie theatres suffer the same fate?

The King of Staten Island on VOD. In a press release, Jeff Shell, the CEO of NBC Universal, acknowledged the viability of the VOD model in the time of quarantine. Adding that as “soon as theatres reopen, we expect to release movies on both formats” to which AMC, the largest theatre chain in the United States, took as a threat and barred the exhibition of Universal movies at AMC theatres.

For decades there were three distinct and separate divisions of the Hollywood model. The studios that made the films, the distributors that marketed and delivered them, and the theatres that exhibited them. These three main processes were individual and separate from one another due to antitrust laws known as the ‘Paramount Consent Decrees’ that were put into place in the 1940s to encourage competition. These decrees ushered away from the studio system of the ‘golden age of Hollywood’ and did away with a vertically integrated industry dominated by a few large oligopolies. Under the guise of streaming platforms, companies like Apple, Netflix and Amazon Prime circumvented these laws based on the notion they aren’t theatres and became the studios, distributors and the exhibitors, effectively bringing back the concentration of ownership.

The movie-theatre business may not make it. Social-distancing rules will impact attendance when they open back up. It’s not just that, though. Two studios have already gone direct to consumer successfully,” said David Chilton, Canadian busi- Universal making a similar decision to circumness mogul, when asked about what might hap- vent the exhibitioners is a return of the old vertically integrated model where brick and mortar pen post-COVID-19. theatres that studios used to own are replaced On March 17, 2020, movie theatres, which are by lean platforms that exhibit right into the livopen 365 days a year, closed their doors for near- ing-rooms of moviegoers. It hinders compely five months. Studios foreseeing the loss of rev- tition and forcefully squeezes the competing enue scrambled to secure release dates later in exhibitioners out. However grim this sounds the year or release their movies via Video on De- for theatres studios reassure exhibitioners that mand (VOD) to capitalize on the many people who theatres remain an integral part of their busiwould be bored quarantining at home. Universal ness models and ensure them that ‘tentpole’ pursued the latter and solidified the viability of a titles that lend themselves to the sophisticated VOD market with the release of Trolls, and The cinema technology will primarily exhibit at theatres. AMC and Universal have since reached Hunt, and The Invisible Man. an agreement where the theatrical exclusivity The success of these titles prompted Universal to window before films can be released on VOD circumvent the only exhibitioners that remained will remain but be decreased from 90 days to open, the few drive-in theatres, also releasing 17 days. Universal stresses that this is mutually beneficial because the more money studios


can amass, the more films can be greenlit and the higher budgets can be awarded to films to draw crowds.

get for a direct to stream movie and rivals other tentpole budgets for films released in theatres.

It’s not just Universal, Netflix, and Apple TV+ This landmark ‘deal’ between AMC and Universal that have set plans for the new model. It is apdictates that Universal will share an undisclosed parent that Disney, the studio with the highest amount of digital sale revenue with AMC in return number of films to traditionally show in theatres, for the shortening of theatre exclusivity. This will is also circumventing exhibitioners with the releave smaller theatre chains and independent lease of Mulan on their Disney+ platform for an theatres in North America at a competitive disad- additional fee this September. vantage because their low market share will likely de-incentivize the studios from sharing profits, and With tension put on theatres now with looming they will be stuck with the smaller release window. closure of their exclusivity window, and most recently with the termination of the ‘Paramount Consent Decrees,’ it remains to be seen just Canadian theatre chain Cineplex pales in comparison to AMC theatres and is mostly at the mercy how the industry will change. The abolition of of whatever the exhibition market leaders and the the decrees means that studios can purchase studios agree on. Had the UK based Cineworld’s theatres again, which is a massive loss in anacquisition of Cineplex gone through, they would titrust law. It opens up avenues for studios like Amazon to buy up theatre chains like AMC as have had more market influence. they begin to circle the drain, ultimately lead“We will fight it with everything we’ve got,” ing to even more significant monopolies on increasingly stratified industries. A considerable said Tony Card, the executive director of opera- oversight that, if left unchecked, could lead to tions for Cineplex theatres in Southwestern Ontar- collusion and a concentration of wealth and poio. Kerry Pucher, theatre manager of a local Lon- litical power. don theatre, chimed in, It’s a slippery slope argument, but if the un“Yes, but Cineplex only owns eight percent precedented loss of revenue for studios and of the North American exhibition market exhibitors and the resulting landmark changso we wouldn’t have much say when es being made to the distribution model that’s been around for decades is any indication, then push comes to shove.” multiplex theatres could cease to exist. Cineplex, now open, continues to struggle with social distancing precautions effectively limiting capacity and with only a few new films to exhibit.

If there is any glimmer of hope that exhibitors will remain intact, it is that the theatre industry is resilient historically, having endured a crisis of studio concentration of ownership in the 1930s, Recent historical box office trends show that and a revenue crisis in the 1970s that launched non-tentpole films attendance drops off after the preshow advertising as a result of studios defirst two weekends of a film’s release and that manding too much of a percentage the ticket decreasing the exclusivity window won’t matter. sales to operate. In addition, the fundamental However, studios bending the will of theatres is a belief that movies are better when they are slippery slope, especially as the threat of COVID experienced on the big screen with a crowd re-closures loom pending a second wave and could be another thing that keeps them around. consumer technology becomes cheaper and conChristopher Nolan believes in the medium and tinues to improve. was gunning for Tenet, the film that “must be experienced in theatre,” to be the first movie The studios reassurances that both models can post-quarantine. If up and coming directors co-exist seems especially deceptive as studios continue to believe in the impact their movies like Netflix and Apple TV+ set a precedent in make on the big screen, and the audience valstreaming VOD tentpole films. Apple’s release of ues the magical movie moments experienced in Greyhound reportedly rivalled box office numbers, theatres, then they will always have a place in and Netflix has announced films like The Grey Man the Hollywood model. that has a budget of $200 million, the highest bud13


Study Tips and Tricks for Surviving First Year


As a fourth year Western student, I understand the struggle of staying motivated. Read on to discover some tips and tricks to help you complete tasks, manage your course load, and study efficiently!

Save your work to the cloud It is crucial when working on your computer to save to the cloud. I have had numerous scares when not saving my work to the cloud and want to save you from that ‘uh-oh’ moment! Google Drive and Office 365 are great platforms for taking notes, writing essays, etc., and you do not have to worry about saving your work as these platforms automatically save it for you. Every Western student has a free Office 365 account providing access to Microsoft PowerPoint, Word, Excel, and more. Just sign in with your Western email address and password, and you are good to go!

Create to-do lists

You may catch yourself feeling unmotivated and unaccomplished when you do not have your tasks in order. Creating weekly and daily to-do lists will help you stay on top of your readings, assignments, and exams. Plus, is there a better feeling than checking off that last to-do item? You can use the sticky notes tool on your laptop, Google Tasks, an agenda, etc. Choose the method that works best for you and stick with it!

Explore new study spaces

With a predominantly online course load, attending lectures from the coziness of your bedroom can be great some days. However, it may leave you feeling lazy on others. Do not be afraid to explore new study spaces! I learned, simply travelling to a new workspace in and of itself allows you to feel productive. If you want a change of scenery, take some time to check out the cafés and libraries in downtown London. These spaces will provide you with a fresh environment for studying and learning.

Plan your day in advance

Having plans aside from studying can motivate you to complete tasks more efficiently. It may seem backwards, though this really works for me! Make arrangements to see your friends and make the most of that social time. Ensure you set aside a time block for studying on that day as well. Including study breaks is important to maintain concentration and maximize the amount of information you absorb during your study sessions. Workout, go

for a walk, grab a coffee, but most of all try to avoid overwhelming yourself with an eight hour study day!

Try studying with music

Music can make studying much more bearable (maybe even fun?). Personally, I enjoy listening to music when taking notes from PowerPoint slides and writing essays, but cannot listen to music when reading or intensely studying for a test or exam. Try pairing some tunes with a study session. Bopping along to your favourite artist can make those theoryheavy lectures more captivating!

Put your phone away

You have heard it time and time again, put that phone away! The time you spend scrolling through TikTok, Instagram and Twitter could be used to complete tasks. Think about how much sooner you would have completed your work if you did not spend those minutes (or hours) using your phone. A strategy I use to work efficiently is putting my phone in a location where I cannot see it. By placing it out of sight, such as in a backpack pocket or another room, you will have to make a conscious effort to retrieve your phone. The goal here is that you will choose to continue studying instead of checking your notifications. Get that work done and save the scrolling for later.


As cluttered as your brain might feel, your environment does not have to reflect that. I constantly catch my room in a disastrous state when my workload feels hectic. In times when the amount of work you have seems unbearable, maintining a clean study space can be beneficial. Having books, papers, pens, pencils, clothes, etc., all over the place will only cause you to be more scatter-brained. Keeping a clean space will allow you to feel more in control of your actions! I hope these tips and tricks will guide you to a successful and productive first year at Western University. These years fly by, so be sure to make the most of them! 15

Radical Youths in a Practical World: Where Does FIMS Fit In? By: Lexie Misterski

The use of social media as a tool for advocacy is not a new concept, however, it goes without saying that this summer has seen a greater circulation on social media of various socio-economic and political issues. From women’s rights to income inequality, indigenous issues, and most prominently the Black Lives Matter Movement, it seemed that everyone took to the digital realm to share infographics, resources, quotes and other related content. As is the case for many FIMS students, I found myself analysing the discourse on my social feeds, relating it to course materials and considering it in a way that I can only think to refer to as “FIMS-y”. In no way can one claim that taking courses like “Race, Class and Social Power” or “Advocacy in Mainstream Media” make us entirely knowledgeable on social issues. However, it should be acknowledged that courses like this among others have provided a framework of analysis for all media content. In other words, FIMS has taught us all to think critically about the content we see and share on all media platforms. This way of thinking is something that we often take for granted. In my experience, it is impossible to go through this program without experiencing a shift in one’s ideologies. The expansion of these perspectives is developed through both course materials and the culture of the FIMS community as a whole which undoubtedly created an echo chamber of shared ideals. The wave of online activity this summer was, in my experience, cloaked in a layer of strangeness as many of us returned home for quarantine, leaving behind the physical space of the Western and FIMS community. What ensued was a paradoxical experience between the proactive and revolutionary realm of social media and the isolated and relatively conservative environment of my family home. I found myself longing for the vibrancy of the campus community which contains a constellation of advocacy groups, clubs, and councils- countless opportunities to learn and grow. Although Western is not without its faults, it is ultimately an environment of innovation and enthusiasm wherein students are encouraged to be passionate, determined and self-assured to work towards a better future. I have to admit that it is all rather cliche, the liberal arts student returning home with a brain full of revolutionary ideals to be politely shut down by older generations who simply ‘know better’. The shared ideology of the FIMS creates a sort of island of ideas that exist outside of the restrictions of outer society. Here we are encouraged to think critically, share radical ideas, and call out injustice. We are told to refuse to accept the status quo, to get angry about the way things are and to think of ways to change it.


It is easy to take for granted this discursive space within which critical discussion about social hierarchies, cultural practices and other loaded topics are the norm. However, when we bring our ideas into the real world we are faced with this harsh reality. My parents for instance, who are relatively open-minded and forward-thinking individuals regularly remind me that as a university student I am a member of a unique population and my views don’t necessarily represent the reality of the masses. In other words, they think it would be best if I lowered my expectations. While it may be obvious to me that a sports team shouldn’t exploit indigenous iconography or that the modern prison system is merely a reimagination of Jim Crow laws (I’ve tried to make them watch the 13th), I have been reminded that generally speaking, people of older generations just don’t think that way. So here comes our job - to MAKE them think that way. I’ve come to the realization that the ways of thinking that we as students, especially in a faculty like FIMS, simply take for granted. At its most fundamental level, FIMS is about critically analyzing the power structures through which our society is constructed and maintained. In class, we have taken a magnifying glass to corruption, inequalities and injustices. The question that is upon us now is what will we do with this information? Do these analytical tools give us a special responsibility within the Western community and beyond? My answer is this: as students and members of society as a whole we all have a responsibility to make use of this environment to discuss, demonstrate, and educate one another. In order to create even the smallest possibility for positive structural change, difficult conversations have to be had. We are fortunate enough to have a safe space within the classroom and the broader campus to have these discussions. I do not believe that being in FIMS awards anyone with superior expertise nor does it burden us with the responsibility of policing the ideals and activities of others. I do believe that the information that we discuss in class and the values of our faculty community call for us to be valuable members of the greater public who shed light on oppressive systems and advocate for positive change. Throughout history, every generation has stepped forth to challenge the structures and traditions of those before it. While our responsibility is no greater than any other member of our generation I believe that the FIMS community has a unique and important perspective to bring to the table. My parents are probably right in saying that we cannot expect everyone to think the way we do or to simply understand. What we can and should expect is that when people have been informed they should learn to be aware of the influence that their words, actions, and lack thereof influence the world around them. It is our job as young people with fresh eyes and optimistic minds to look at the status quo and say “not good enough”, to shed light on injustice and dismantle structures of oppression and exploitation. I believe that FIMS provides the foundation of knowledge and creative freedom to do just that.


a d n a g n i s s e l B A : Quarantine e Creative Mind Curse for th //TIA SACKS

In a world bursting with inspiration, the creative mind confronts the challenge of quarantine in the pursuit of developing artistic expression. Behind closed doors, artists, photographers, writers, actors and other creators have cultivated their innovative abilities to turn their frustrations into incredible projects and initiatives. This is no easy task. The thinking outside of the box mentality has reached far and wide, provoking creativity and positivity in several respects. Here is a list of some of the most notable creations from the last few months!


The Museum of Quarantine

Ann Morrow Johnson, an artist and architect, created an art exhibit in the driveway of her own Los Angeles property. Community members are free to contribute their works of art to the gallery, and each piece creatively expresses life in a pandemic. As displayed in this image, there is a wide range of mediums that are used- from canvases to post-it-notes!



LA Times

Some Good News

In the current wake of what seems to be a never-ending stream of bad news on our news stations, actor John Krasinski created the YouTube web series, Some Good News. From his own home, Krasinski shares happy stories from around the world and words of hope, with the goal to uplift the human spirit and bring a smile to viewer’s faces. Since the project’s launch in late March, it has gained over two million subscribers and up to 18 million views. One episode even includes a Zoom reunion of the entire cast from The Office!

Covid Art Museum

Three advertising designers from Barcelona founded an Instagram account, @covidartmuseum, to collect and share artwork that was created by artists during lockdowns across the world. Anyone can post their art using the hashtag #CovidArtMuseam and automatically have their work compiled for review and publication. This account promotes artist visibility, appreciation and recognition while putting a spotlight on the diverse nature of artistic expression during a time of confusion and uncertainty. 18


www. moreloveletters. com

Although not new, More Love Letters is an extremely relevant project, as everyone could use a little TLC from each other during this time. More Love Letters allows people to write letters to nominated individuals, who may be going through a divorce, struggling with mental or physical illness, experiencing grief and more. Now more than ever, the world needs everyone to spread love and kindness, and sending oldfashioned snail mail is one of the most personal ways to do so.



In the Netherlands, a group of artists created a pro bono poster making initiative that sends positivity in the form of text and art to hospitals across the country. Thousands of designs have been contributed by artists in 86 dierent countries! On their website, you can download these graphics for yourself and also access templates to create and submit your own.

As the pandemic continues, creatives around the globe continue to prove that there are no limits within the arts. These examples should serve as inspiration for us to reect on our own skills and innovativeness, and ďŹ nd access to materials and collaborators within our reach. There is no project too big or too small, and no creative idea worth keeping on your notepad. Get crafting! 19


HOW WOMEN ARE by jay medland


he year is 2010: you just got your new iPod Touch and are excited to take a picture in your new “I <3 Boobies” bracelet that the teachers at your school want to ban. You turn on the radio and the speakers explode into the bombastic musical stylings of artists like Katy Perry, Rihanna, and Kesha, as their major hits are played in heavy rotation. The back-to-back pop hits keep them thriving in an industry that is largely ruled by catchy bubblegum and dance production, elevated by the powerful voices of women reclaiming their narratives within music. As the decade progresses, artists like Adele, Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift are continuously catapulted into global superstardom, as the charts see a surprisingly even success rate for both male and female artists. Out of the 69 #1 singles from 2010 to 2015, 34 were sung by female leads and many male-lead tracks had women featured on the chorus (such as “Love the Way You Lie” and “Timber”). Then in 2015, the catchy bubblegum pop began to fade away as EDM and hiphop influenced tracks began becoming the new norm for pop radio. Artists like Drake, Post Malone and The Chainsmokers found new footing within pop radio. As the second half of the decade progressed, fewer female artists found themselves at

Katy Perry JANUARY 1ST, 2010



the peak of the Billboard Hot 100, as the women who once had consistent success began to see their sales decrease in favour of streaming platforms and sound shifts. Both electro-dance and rap are largely maledominated genres of music. Specifically with rap, only Nicki Minaj had managed to see consistent success that matched her male peers, with many of her biggest hits being largely influenced by the sonically pop style that worked for other women (see “Starships”, “Super Bass”). That being said, the drought of women dominating pop paved new ways for female performers to produce new sounds that lived up to industry standards. In the latter half of the decade, while the charts were predominantly occupied by male artists producing dance and hip-hop records, this shift in style made room for newer female artists to change the standard of pop music. Artists like Ariana Grande, Cardi B and Dua Lipa catapulted into new realms of success due to their ability to apply influences from EDM and trap, creating new expectations for pop radio and introducing more alternative pop sounds that artists like Billie Eilish would find their niche in.



However, 2020 has been a game-changing year for female pop artists. What makes this year so different is the application of new sonic expectations, embraced by women who have allowed their musical style to shift in favour of what is commercially successful. This year has seen a large growth in interest in female rappers, as artists like Megan Thee Stallion continue to shift the perspective of the rap industry’s style. The largely rap and dance dominated industry has shifted to embrace female artists who hone their style to these sonic expectations. Artists like Ariana Grande began to reach the top of the charts for mixing their pop style with trap influences and the disco-electronic sounds of artists like Dua Lipa have seen greater success in the past year or so. What makes 2020 stick out is how prevalent these sounds have been on pop radio. For the rap industry, this year has been absolutely gamechanging for women. Following the success of Cardi B in the last two years, more and more female rappers are finding space to grow and flourish like Saweetie, City Girls and Doja Cat. Nicki Minaj even managed to score her first two #1 singles, despite holding a heavy relevancy throughout the last decade.

Nicki Minaj

One of the singles, (“Say So” with Doja Cat) was the first all-female rap collaboration to reach the peak and songs like “WAP” are set to follow suit in success. Similarly, artists like Lady Gaga have found new success implementing the EDM stylings of artists like Zedd and The Chainsmokers, producing a more futuristic element of dance-pop that thrives in comparison to past efforts like “Joanne” and “ARTPOP”. This success can be compared to similar artists like Katy Perry and Kesha, who have been releasing music this year inspired by their successful early 2010s efforts (“Animal”, “Teenage Dream”), and have found an underwhelming amount of interest in their returns to the bubblegum, party pop eras. Overall, while women have been continuously releasing amazing music throughout the decade, the general taste in music has largely favoured men as stylistic expectations have shifted. What makes this year special is it is the first to show a shift in the expectations of pop that have allowed women to reclaim their footing in an industry that largely disregards them. This transition in interest has once again opened the doors to new ideals of pop music and the success of women this year shows a promising reclamation of women dominating the dance floors once again. Now, here’s to hoping 2020 will also be the return of Rihanna.

Ariana Grande

Cardi B JANUARY 1ST, 2020


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your first year of University will I recognize that those of you who are going into endure last year, but I am still be up against challenges that I did not have to I have laid out. hopeful you can take something out of these words


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During a pandemic, lockdowns, curfews and other restrictions on movement are deemed necessary preventative health measures that can save millions of lives. For women and girls, they can also be sources of increased risk of violence and death. Organizations working to combat gender-based violence (GBV) worldwide have issued an unsettling amount of reports showing that more GBV is occurring against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic. What is Gender-Based Violence? Gender-based violence, commonly referred to by its acronym GBV, is violence that is committed against someone based on their gender identity, gender expression or perceived gender. In Canada, GBV disproportionately impacts women and girls, as well as other diverse populations such as Indigenous Peoples, LGBTQI2+ and gender non-binary individuals, those living in northern, rural, and remote communities, people with disabilities, newcomers, children and youth, and seniors. Women at Risk of Gender-Based Violence: Aboriginal women 5 - 7 times more likely to be killed 582 missing/murdered women in Canada


Women with disabilities (15.5% of pop) 60% experience some form of violence

Young women (16 – 24) 66% of all female victims of sexual assault are under 24 / 11% are under the age of 11 Immigrant women Do not experience higher rates but may be more vulnerable due to economic dependence, language barriers, lack of knowledge of community services Women in Rural Communities Isolation, lack of transportation, long response time for police, firearms in the home, responsibilities for livestock

Reports of GBV have underscored the fact that many of the measures deemed necessary for controlling a viral outbreak are not only exacerbating GBV-related risks but also significantly limiting the ability of survivors to shield themselves from their abusers, all the while limiting or severing their access to life-saving support. The Ontario Association of Interval and Transition Houses reports 20% of the 70 shelters it represents have had increased crisis calls during the pandemic. Before the pandemic, rates of gender-based violence in Canada were already high on average every six days a woman is killed by her intimate partner. Now with COVID isolation measures in place, there exists a heightened risk of violence in the homes of Canadians as well as around the world. “Pre-COVID, we had about 471 calls per month asking for shelter space. Now we’re up to just shy of 1,900 calls,” Yvonne Harding, manager of resource development at the Assaulted Women’s Helpline, has seen a 400 percent increase in requests for shelter space in the last six months. Canadian Women’s Foundation has developed a signal for help: a simple one-handed sign one can use to signal for help during a video call. If you see this single please reach out to check in on that person’s safely (image below).  If you are in the London area and require assistance Anova Women’s Shelter offers a 24/7 crisis and support line at 519-6413000 or 1 800 265 1576. Other resources are as follows: My Sister’s Place, London Abused Women’s Shelter and Mission Services of London. These organizations are always looking for volunteers/donations.



Due to COVID-19, the majority of classes this school year will be held online. While that might be different than what you expected, you might as well make the most of it. Remember whether you live in residence or with your parents, take care of yourself and your mental health. Walking not only improves blood circulation, lightens your mood and improves your sleep, but it gets you up and out of the desk. London is known for its beautiful and long nature trails. Check out some of these trails the next time you just need to get out.

Thames Valley Parkway - Easy

Right on campus, this parkway is 27.5km in length that takes you all the way to downtown London. If you’re looking to explore, get a walk in and don’t want to take the bus, this is the perfect trail for you.

Medway Valley Heritage Forest - Easy

This trail is only 3.1km and is perfect for those who live at Saugeen Maitland Hall.

Kilally Meadows - Easy

There are a variety of trails within this site, totalling 10.3 km. Most of the trails are flat and easy to walk, with a variety of vegetation and wildlife. Look out for a Great Spangled Fritillary butterfly.

Thames Valley Trail Loop - Moderate

Thames Valley Trail Loop is a 7.7 kilometre heavily trafficked loop trail primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching. It is best used from March until November.

Fanshawe Lake Trail - Moderate

Fanshawe Lake Trail is a 19.6 kilometre moderately trafficked loop trail that is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on a leash.


Check out these trails and remember to stay active and get outside!


QUARANTINE HAIRCUTS GETTING OUT OF CONTROL Huge spike in "curtain bangs tutorial" Youtube searches OWL TAB NOW PERMANENTLY OPEN Laptop fan continuously sounds like the Pearson Airport runway TIKTOK ADDICTION SHORTENING ATTENTION SPANS Profs start trying to keep Zoom lectures under 15 seconds CAMPUS-WIDE WEBCAM FAILURES Thousands of students claiming their cameras are "broken" STUDENTS WEAR THEIR CEEPS OUTFITS TO GET GROCERIES Loblaws parking lot backed up due to Instagram photoshoots INTIMACY STANDARDS GO DOWN DURING PANDEMIC Touch-deprived students seek romance through discussion forums FIMS GRAD STRUGGLES TO FIND JOB AFTER FOURTH YEAR There's no punchline to this one 27

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Our first issue of the year has arrived!! With content that's provocative, inquisitive, creative, and media savvy, there's something for eve...


Our first issue of the year has arrived!! With content that's provocative, inquisitive, creative, and media savvy, there's something for eve...