FES student in the spotlight

Big, bad Canadian business in Africa got the spotlight this week, wrote The Globe and Mail’s Ken Wiwa in his Nov. 2 column. But, so did Kenyan businessman and Faculty of Environmental Studies graduate student, Farouk Jiwa. As Wiwa pointed out, Jiwa “was presented with the Equator Prize, which recognizes outstanding achievement in sustainable development. By engaging 2,500 subsistence farmers in Kenya, Honey Care Africa Ltd. has managed to build a profitable business through a strategic alliance between Western donors and NGOs, private enterprise and local communities. Honey Care is based on the kind of economic model [that advocates]…that multinationals can improve the lives of billions of the world’s poorest by stimulating economic activity in low-income markets…. The fact that Mr. Jiwa is studying in Canada suggests the possibility of stronger links between immigration and development policy.”

FES lounge best hangout at York: Now

The Environmental Studies lounge on the third floor, Lumbers Building, is listed as the Best Hangout at York University in NOW Magazine’s Best of Toronto 2002 issue. “York’s campus/gulag was reportedly designed to discourage student uprisings by providing no real meeting places, only thoroughfares and wastelands (and soul-destroying architecture). Luckily, students always find a way. And between the underground tunnels and window slots more suited to medieval marksmen than sun-starved students, the bright, friendly Environmental Studies lounge is comparable to a tropical beach. Marvel at the yummy vegan fare, the hodgepodge of couches and ever-changing student artwork.”

York-trained actor remounts fest winner

NOW Magazine

Online Edition interviewed Mike McPhaden, a York-trained actor who is remounting his summer fest play Poochwater at Passe Muraille Backspace with the original artistic team. Poochwater won the SummerWorks jury prize in 2000. The comic drama is about identity and memory.

Black-on-black crime hits epidemic levels

Desmond Ellis, a York University sociology professor who has looked carefully at the link between race and crime, says black-on-black crime has hit epidemic levels in large US cities, reported The Globe and Mail Nov. 2. According to the newspaper, Ellis said black-on-black crime is the result of a complex sociological problem only partly explained by poverty. It is also driven by a phenomenon referred to as “stateless location,” a situation in which individuals do not recognize society’s standard measures of success and status or its methods of keeping order. Instead, they adopt street values, where status is based on personal force and where disputes are settled directly, through threats and violence. This kind of street-based society places a disproportionate emphasis on “respect,” and even the mildest slight, or “diss” can lead to a confrontation. “We may see the perceived act of disrespect as nothing,” says Ellis. “But within their peer group, it assumes enormous importance.”

Camille Paglia’s legacy

On Nov. 2 The Globe and Mail columnist Lynn Crosbie discussed Camille Paglia’s legacy, a prelude to Paglia’s upcoming talk, “The Magic of Images: Word and Picture in a Media Age,” at York University-based Living Literacies Conference. Crosbie says: “And although her presence at the conference speaks to its celebrity agenda – Susan Sontag, Jean Baudrillard and Rubin (Hurricane) Carter are some of the other luminaries — Paglia is hardly the draw she once was, for her star has dimmed considerably.”

A Bök tour

Experimental poet and York University English Professor Christian Bök leads Globe and Mail reporter Tralee Pearce on a tour of Art Metropole, the art/bookstore, “the kind of place where Bök buys the first-edition hardcovers that fill his collection,” she says in her Nov. 2 piece. “‘The books themselves constitute works of conceptual art,’ Bök says, running a hand over a white-sleeved hardcover on a table in the centre of the room. “This is a Joseph Kosuth book called Purloined, A Novel. He’s taken a page from a murder mystery, and juxtaposed it with page two from a completely different book.’ He reads from the Frankensteined text…. Bök…has a soothing baritone voice, both professorial and poetic.”

Patient a partner in health care

“Rather than just presenting themselves to the physician, who is generally the primary care provider, to do with as he pleases, [patients} were much more informed; they knew where to go, and of course, the Internet has made that sort of information much more readily available,” Adeline Falk-Rafael, nursing professor at York and president of the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario, told The Toronto Star Nov. 2.