Concordia faculty, staff and alumni/æ pop up in the media more often than you might think!


David Howes (Sociology and Anthropology) has been helping Allard Johnson Communications, which has offices in Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa, to develop more insight into consumer behaviour, according to an article in Marketing magazine.

Luc-Alain Giraldeau (Biology) was asked by L'Actualité magazine to comment on a book by Bruce Bagemihl of the University of Washington at Seattle, titled Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity (St. Martin's Press). Giraldeau had not read the book and cautioned prudence. "Nous ne connaissons rien des émotions des animaux," he said. "L'homosexualité est aussi affaire d'émotions, pas seulement de comportement sexuel."

Daniel Salée (SCPA) was quoted in an article widely reported via the Canadian Press news service. Asked about the Quebec government's legislative response to the federal government's so-called clarity bill, he said, "[Quebec] was hoping that this would be one of the winning conditions, that it would stir the pot a little more, but there's been no echo in the population."

Hugh Brodie wrote a letter to The Globe and Mail sharply criticizing U.S. firearms advocate Charlton Heston's remarks to a B.C. group opposing gun registration. As a member of the Rector's Office in the early 1990s, he was one of those who presented to Parliament a gun control petition bearing 200,000 signatures and the endorsement of 200 organizations, and calls it the proudest achievement of his life. "The truth is that, far from being imposed by 'a callous and self-serving government,' our gun control laws were developed in response to overwhelming demand."

Yes, Jeff Douglas, the actor who does the now-famous Canadian rant in the Molson commercial ("I believe in peacekeeping, not policing, diversity, not assimilation. . . A toque is a hat, a chesterfield is a couch, and it is pronounced zed, not zee."), is one of ours. Douglas, now living in Toronto, was in Concordia's Specialization in Theatre Performance program. He performed the commercial live at a hockey game at Toronto's Air Canada Centre on April 15, bringing a roaring audience to their feet.

A feature article appeared in the National Post by alumnus Patchen Barss about the Leonardo Project, which addresses the psychology of music performance. It quoted co-director Professor Philip Cohen and Angela Chan, who wrote her Master's thesis on musical giftedness and is pursuing her PhD as part of the project.

Imagining Baseball, a book by David McGimpsey (English/Creative Writing) was given a short review in The Globe and Mail's Saturday Books section. It was also the subject of an article in the National Post, where McGimpsey was quoted on the fact that hockey is being idealized in Canada in a similar way to baseball in the U.S.

Professor Bala Ashtakala, our expert on transportation engineering, gave interviews on potholes this spring that went right across Canada via CBC Radio.

The May issue of University Affairs contains a letter to the editor by Harvey Shulman (Political Science/Liberal Arts College) about revamping the university curriculum. "The ability of universities to accommodate to changing notions of relevance appeals to some administrators, many private donors and political leaders. . . At some point, however, someone has to ask at what cost. . . and could what now constitutes the university's mission be equally accomplished somewhere else."

The Montreal Mirror gave the Oscar Peterson Concert Hall an honourable mention for "Best Live Venue" in this year's edition of their Best of Montreal poll. Winners included the Spectrum, Metropolis, Cabaret, Club Soda, and the Jailhouse Rock Cafe. John Jordan (Publicity and Promotions) says, "Of the selected venues, the Oscar Peterson Concert Hall is the only soft-seat, theatre-style venue, the only room with a regular program of classical music, and the only university-based facility." Jordan himself tied for second place as "Most Prominent Scenester," a category he modestly dismisses as "nebulous."

Steven Appelbaum (Management) took part in a discussion on CBC Radio's local HomeRun recently on spirituality in the workplace. He said that companies promoting meditation rooms "are only introducing fads and not valid managerial interventions intended to help employees cope with drastic changes."

Harvey Shepherd's religion column in The Gazette featured an interview and photo of Frederick Bird (Religious Studies) and Bassem Khalifah (Political Science) about a major research project they are undertaking called "Global Responsibilities: The Practices of International Businesses in Developing Areas." It involves 18 researchers from many universities and countries who are collecting data from around the world.

Copyright 2000 Concordia's Thursday Report.