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The Walrus Talks Belonging
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM

London Music Hall, 185 Queens Ave., London ON

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Couldn’t make it to Walrus Talks Belonging? Follow the action live: thewalrus.ca/live

Western Alumni and the Faculty of Arts and Humanities welcomes alumni and friends to The Walrus Talks Belonging.

This year’s event brings some of Canada’s most inspiring minds to share thought-provoking ideas exploring belonging.

Speaker Bios

Kamal Al-Solaylee, Author and Professor, Ryerson University

In his two award-winning, bestselling books, and a long history of writing, Kamal Al-Solaylee deals with issues of race, sexuality, migration, persecution, and what it means to be human. Exploring the intersections between being gay and being Muslim, he'll talk about the choices people have to make to live their lives with truth while finding places they belong.

Molly Burke, YouTuber and motivational speaker

As her many fans on YouTube know, Molly Burke navigates a world that is not designed for people with disabilities. They also know that she also happens to be blind. She talks about how disability may be more of a social construct than we typically imagine, and by exploring the creativity of people with disabilities and the changes we can make in how we think about accessibility, she shows us what true inclusion is.

Erik Mandawe, artist in residence, London Arts Council

As a multi-disciplinary artist, actor, and medical anthropologist, Erik Mandawe has approached belonging from many angles. His grassroots work on addictions and mental health in rural Indigenous communities put him into areas where questions of belonging are front and centre, and his artistic practice sees him exploring how to re-Indigenize urban areas like London so all feel welcome. His experience and perspective are truly unique, and his take on who belongs and how we fit in is extremely valuable.

Hanny Hassan, BESc'64, Chair, Board of Governors, Western University

Hanny Hassan has spent his life in London, and has devoted his life to public service. He speaks about accepting differences in each other, and what it takes to create a society that is truly welcoming of people from diverse backgrounds. With his own personal history in London, and a rare view of the community's development, Hanny Hassan will tell us why belonging matters.

Heather O'Neill, Author

Heather O'Neill is a novelist, short story writer, screenwriter, and essayist. Her books, which include Lullabies for Little Criminals, The Girl Who Was Saturday Night, and Daydreams of Angels, have won CBC’s Canada Reads, the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction, and the Danuta Gleed Literary Award. She has been shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction, the Orange Prize for Fiction, and, in two consecutive years, the Scotiabank Giller Prize. Her latest novel, The Lonely Hearts Hotel, came out in February 2017.

Carol Todd, Founder, Amanda Todd Legacy Society

Carol Todd is an educator and an advocate against bullying who was thrust into the spotlight with the tragic death of her daughter. She explores the meaning in her daughter's story, but will also share stories about her own life, and trying to fit in. With a focus on bullying and mental health, she brings us a powerful message of love and loss, and how we all belong.

Jonathan Hood, former Toronto Argonaut and PhD candidate at Western

Jonathan Hood is a former linebacker for the Toronto Argonauts who has made a name for himself off the football field as a motivational speaker, a youth mentor, a leadership consultant and an entrepreneur. But getting there and belonging was never a sure thing.

Kim Samuel, president of the Samuel Family Foundation and professor at McGill

Kim Samuel's work focuses on social isolation as a critical experiential and measurable component of multi-dimensional poverty and underscores the importance of social connectedness to human dignity and human rights struggles globally.

The Walrus Talks is a national series of events produced by the charitable, non-profit Walrus Foundation as part of an educational mandate to provide forums for conversations on matters vital to Canadians. Each event offers lively, thoughtful, inspiring, riveting, smart, new thinking from scientists, writers, performers, scholars and leaders of business and the arts.

Tickets are $10 per person. Please purchase your tickets here.

There will be a livestream of the event for those who cannot attend. More info to come.

Please purchase tickets no later than Monday, October 16, 2017.

Western Alumni is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. Please contact us if you have any particular accommodation requirements or require information in an alternate format.

Sign me up! Tickets can be purchased here.

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