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Gore Vidal in Montreal

Summer is just around the corner in Montreal; springtime is here, and with it the annual literary gathering known as the Blue Metropolis Festival, which recently welcomed to its stage renowned author, essayist and liberal activist Gore Vidal to set the tone for the literary happenings to come.

As the octogenarian was wheeled on to the dais, he paused, as if to announce himself to the crowd, and was overcome by the appreciative applause from the 600-plus crowd.

Before the night was over he was labelled as "cantankerous" by one young student, held up as the greatest U.S. president they never had by another, and would thoroughly entertain, if not enlighten, the congregated mass, though a dozen or so walked out before his talk had concluded.

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Columnists

In praise of words, not books

Speaking writer to readers, I want to register some year-end thoughts on climate change in the realm of reading.

Begin with technology. Canadians can finally buy Kindle e-readers. I know there are people who'd rather these had never got here. They say they'll miss the tactility of print on paper, the rustle of turning pages, etc. Yet this may pass. When computers first appeared, I constructed a complex argument against writing with them -- something about it being anti-creative. Then, one day, the prices dropped and suddenly I couldn't recall my objections.

Comments

We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:

Do

  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.

Don't

  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
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'Being a Bird in North America' book signing and reading with author Robert Alvo

Saturday, April 9, 2016 - 2:00pm

Location

Octopus Books Glebe
116 Third Ave.
Ottawa, ON
Canada
45° 24' 10.6992" N, 75° 41' 18.906" W

Being a Bird in North America (BABINA) brings birds to life on the page with a blend of humor and science that showcases the most interesting aspects of each species. With over 200 original cartoons, this book makes every species memorable, and sets itself apart from field guides. Whether the reader is new to the world of birds or a veteran birder, BABINA offers new insight into the lives of birds. It reveals the tricks used by birds to survive, the real problems they face, and addresses their conservation issues.

Reading of 'Cosmophilia' by Rahat Kurd, a finalist in the 2014 Gwendolyn MacEwen Poetry Prize

Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - 7:00pm

Location

Octopus Books Centretown
2nd Floor, 251 Bank St.
Ottawa, ON
Canada
45° 24' 58.7052" N, 75° 41' 48.6744" W

A Muslim woman engaging in religious and political imagery in lyric and narrative styles, Rahat Kurd steps out our of her cultural comfort zone to provide a unique book of poetry that combines reflections on Kashmir, Muslim culture, and religious imagery, with an often alienating yet also stimulating city life.

An evening with the Germ Guy, Jason Tetro, author of 'The Germ Files'

Wednesday, March 23, 2016 - 7:00pm

Location

Octopus Books Centretown
2nd Floor, 251 Bank St.
Ottawa, ON
Canada
45° 24' 58.7052" N, 75° 41' 48.6744" W

Jason Tetro, author of The Germ Code, is back with a very different book but the same message: microbes are amazing, they deserve our respect and we should learn to live with them in harmony. THE GERM FILES: The Surprising Ways Microbes Can Improve Your Health and Life (and How to Protect Yourself from the Bad Ones) informs and entertains with accessible mini-essays. The way we feel, think, look and even interact with the world is affected by the germs in and around us. Despite their reputation for making us ill, germs also keep us alive and healthy. They even offer us relationship advice: the millions of bacteria shared in a first kiss send the brain strong messages about compatibility.

Novel and poetry reading with Jeff Bursey, Brecken Hancock and Chris Turnbull

Tuesday, January 26, 2016 - 7:00pm

Location

Octopus Books Centretown
2nd Floor, 251 Bank St.
Ottawa, ON
Canada
45° 24' 58.7052" N, 75° 41' 48.6744" W

Join Jeff Bursey, Brecken Hancock and Chris Turnbull for a reading of their latest creation Mirrors on which dust has fallen!, Broom Broom  and continua!

Birdie: Reading and discussion with author Tracey Lindberg and Dr. Kahente Horn-Miller

Tuesday, January 19, 2016 - 7:00pm

Location

Octopus Books Centretown
2nd Floor, 251 Bank St.
Ottawa, ON
Canada
45° 24' 58.7052" N, 75° 41' 48.6744" W

Listed one of the Best Books of the Year in 2015 on CBC and National Post! This is an event that cannot be missed. 

Author Tracey Lindberg will be in conversation with Dr. Kahente Horn-Miller about her debut novel Birdie follwing a reading from her book.

About the Book

Bernice Meetoos will not be broken.

REVERB: A Queer Reading Series Spring 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015 - 7:00am - 9:30am

Location

Gallery Gachet
88 E. Cordova Street
Vancouver, BC
Canada
49° 16' 56.2692" N, 123° 6' 9.4032" W

REVERB: A Queer Reading Series aims to support and showcase emerging and established LGBT2QI writers through a quarterly reading series with an anti-oppressive framework. We believe that writing is a radical act that can transform dominant narratives about whose lives and loves are important and valued, and that sharing that writing can empower, inspire and transform ourselves and our communities. We write and read on unceded Musqueam, Sḵwxwú7mesh, and Tsleil-Waututh land, and are committed to radical inclusion in our series, recognizing that access to the world of writing, literacy, and even queerness continues to be limited.

Toronto book launch for Trish Salah's 'Lyric Sexology Volume 1'

Sunday, December 7, 2014 - 4:00am

Location

District Oven
842 College Street
Toronto, ON
Canada
43° 39' 15.5232" N, 79° 25' 23.3328" W

Join Another Story Bookshop and Roof Books to celebrate the launch of Lyric Sexology, Vol. 1

A book reading and signing with Trish Salah and special guests performance artist Coco Riot and poet Nayrouz Abu Hatoum

Sunday, December 7th @ 4pm, 
District Oven - 842 College St
Wheelchair accessible
Free - all welcome
416-462-1104
www.anotherstory.ca

Rowers Reading Series

Monday, November 3, 2014 - 6:45pm

Location

The Central
603 Markham St
Toronto, ON
Canada
43° 39' 53.28" N, 79° 24' 44.5536" W

Join the Rowers Reading Series for a wonderful evening of poetry and prose featuring Peter Dube, dee Hobsbawn-Smith, Angela Rawlings & Ray Robertson. Monday, November 3, 2014. Doors open at 6:15 pm, readings begin at 6:45 pm, evening ends at 8:45pm. The Central, 603 Markham St., Toronto.rowerspubreadingseries.com

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