Paul Robeson: The tallest tree in our forest

Wednesday, March 23, 2011 - 23:00 to Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 01:00

The Tallest Tree in Our Forest

Presented by Hart House, the Centre for the Study of the United States, Munk School of Global Affairs, and Access and Diversity Unit in Parks Forestry and Recreation (City of Toronto)

"We must join with the tens of millions all over the world who see in peace our most sacred responsibility."

In celebration of the UN Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Hart House, the Centre for the Study of the United States, Munk School of Global Affairs, and Access and Diversity Unit in Parks Forestry and Recreation (City of Toronto) present Paul Robeson: The Tallest Tree in Our Forest, Challenging Race and Class within Toronto's Multicultural Framework.

Four panelists, each speaking from a different perspective, will address the importance of actor-turned-civil rights leader Paul Robeson's work both locally and abroad and will relate these achievements within the context of Toronto.The panel discussion will focus on Robeson's approach to race and class during the 1930s and 40s and the relevance of his achievements around current dialogue on the limits of multiculturalism following the release of recent reports indicating that Toronto is becoming an increasingly segregated community along the lines of race, ethnicity and class.

A screening of the 8-minute film The Tallest Tree in Our Forest, chronicling the larger than life personality and relevance of Paul Robeson will precede the panel discussion.

Cost: Free

Panelists include: Ken Jeffers, City of Toronto Manager, Access and Diversity, Parks Forestry and Recreation; Norm Kelly, Writer and Playwright; Lee Lorch, Civil rights activist and York Professor Emeritus and Rathika Sitsabaiesan, Scarborough-Rouge River Federal NDP Candidate

Hart House
7 Hart House Circle University of Toronto
M5S 3H3 Toronto , ON
43° 39' 48.996" N, 79° 23' 40.7436" W
Ontario CA
Zoe Dille

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable. has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! 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 and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • 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.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.