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  • It’s the Political Economy, Stupid

    Exhibition catalogues rarely serve as more than an archive, but here the difference is by design. Envisioned as a series of intersecting projects, It’s the Political Economy, Stupid ( Pluto Books, 2013) exists independently of — and parallel to — four site-responsive exhibitions (with more stops to come) and various public programming.

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  • Keep True, NDP

    Keep True is a better read than its rather lame title might suggest. Pawley recounts his career in a clear, crisp and concise manner. His record of his time in government can be helpful in teaching activists how to build a progressive movement capable of winning political office. This would be of no small benefit: as the crushing of the Occupy movement shows, those who wish to effect democratic change will need the power of government as well as the support of the streets. But if activists need guidance on what to do when they form government, they will need to look further.

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  • Where’s the Rage Over the Arbit Ragers?

    Since we will not learn in school the lessons about the 1% we ought to know, many of us rely on movies and TV, so that through images and sound we can form ideas of who the men were who screwed up our economy. In Arbitrage, we see how how Hollywood conceives of a cinematic grammar into which we can analyze the nature of the people who sparked the the financial crisis.

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  • Veblen’s Theory of the Leisure Class Updated

    Crass Struggle is impressive for its comprehensiveness, a testament to the two-plus decades Naylor has spent researching and writing about international black markets. Since it is being released at a moment when, despite persistent revenue shortages, powerful forces in Canada and the US appear poised to block any efforts to raise taxes on millionaires, Crass Struggle’s depiction of the true nature of luxury consumption is also timely.

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  • Web Review: True Grit

    Call me incorrigibly dogmatic and a “politically correct” bore, but I just can’t get on the bandwagon for the Coen brothers’ “True Grit”. I confess that I was prejudiced from the start, having had an extreme reaction against the original “True Grit” that starred Vietnam War hawk John Wayne in 1969.

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  • Peeping in on Goldie (and liking the show)

    In queersexlife: Autobiographical Notes on Sexuality, Gender & Identity Terry Goldie offers up a heady brew of theory and introspection that is both refreshing and biting. The “autobiographical notes” that infuse the book reveal the intimacy and inextricability of personal experience and theoretical perspective which grounds the work and makes it feel “human” and accessible. At the same time, the deeply personal details jar the reader who might find his frankness unfamiliar, if not uncomfortable. And good for him. Goldie’s narratives are not merely casual observations that superficially draw links between the personal and political; instead, he is willing to be vulnerable and raw. Academic writing rarely offers this intimacy—moans and other physical pleasures in the first person—and it is a welcome shake-up. Indeed, it causes the reader, at least this reader, to question what that initial discomfort may mean, about the boundaries of knowledge production and about the scopophilia that positions the reader in a unique relationship to the text, gazing upon the strokes and sounds that emit from the pages.

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  • Fist of the Spider Woman

    When I decided to venture “out,” I yearned for lesbian literatures that would brace my trembling, newborn limbs. I’d spent years projecting my own lesbian desires in my mind’s wide dark room while at the hands of male lovers, but at the brink of queerdom, I struggled to connect sex and emotions. For guidance, I bought the annual Ultimate Lesbian Erotica, which wasn’t ultimate, I was so disengaged from the contrived characters and situations I never finished reading the collection. Instead, I wish I’d picked-up a literary collection like Fist of the Spider Woman: Tales of Fear and Queer Desire, an anthology edited by Vancouver’s Amber Dawn, however, I doubt there were many like it. This anthology’s diverse cast of characters skillfully embodies the political and personal that molds a lesbian’s desire, constructing stories and poems that are sexy and substantive.

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  • From Mothers to Activists

    Disability, Mothers, and Organization: Accidental Activists, by Melanie Panitch, looks specifically at the development of the community living movement across Canada, an organization that (broadly speaking) assists people with developmental disabilities in meeting their needs.

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  • The Emperor’s Old Clothes

    It’s hard to know where to begin with this book, which purports to be a kind of “expose” of the use of Aboriginal traditional knowledge in policy making and ranges far afield into a critique of the idea of Indigenous rights and a survey of problems in the fields of Aboriginal healthcare, education, self-government, land claims, and so on. I had previously written these authors off as “kooks” from the far political right wing; but now they have been embraced by certain prominent left academics and have themselves started to gloss their opinions with Marxist rhetoric.

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  • Taking on the Tar Sands

    In his first speech to a business audience after his election in 2006, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s announcement that Canada was an “emerging energy superpower” signaled his government’s commitment to unflinching support for the relentless expansion of Alberta’s tar sands, primarily to supply synthetic crude oil to the United States. Since then, the tar sands have been the subject of extensive national and international media reporting, even receiving attention in Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, where his staff disparaged the tar sands as “dirty oil.”

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Maude Barlow, National Chairperson, Council of Canadians

Canadian Dimension is a breath of fresh air in an increasingly narrow media world. Here you will find the views and depth so sadly missing in most Canadian magazines and newspapers. Long live Canadian Dimension!

— Maude Barlow, National Chairperson, Council of Canadians. SUBSCRIBE NOW!