Lunchtime Series – January to December 2021

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Thursday, January 21, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Glory of the Silk Road: Traveller and photographer Muslim Harji gives a presentation on the Silk Road with stories of people he met, accounts of visits to exotic bazaars and archaeological sites with history stretching back to Genghis Khan and Marco Polo.

Thursday, January 28, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Montreal author Mary Soderstrom gives a talk with a video on her latest book, Concrete: From Ancient Origins to a Problematic Future.

Thursday, February 18, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Richard Pound sheds light on Lord Durham (1792-1840) and the contribution he made to the development of Canada through his brief service as governor general and the report he wrote to the British government in 1839 on the affairs of British North America.

Thursday, February 25, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Rosalind Pepall, former curator at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, recounts some of the wonderful stories in her book Talking to a Portrait: Tales of an Art Curator.

Thursday, March 4, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Gwendolyn Owens, Director of McGill University’s Visual Arts Collection, tells a fascinating story, “A celebration and a ruckus: The 1931 inauguration of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney’s fountain on the McGill University campus.

Thursday, March 11, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
In the lead-up to ST. PATRICK’S DAY, Kate Bevan-Baker, award-winning musician and teacher, gives an interactive presentation about the history and importance of Irish traditional music here in Canada with examples.

Thursday, March 18, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Jackie Roberge, holistic health coach and meditation teacher, gives an interactive presentation on “Sleep and Your Health.” World Sleep Day is March 19 and this year’s slogan is “Regular Sleep, Healthy Future.”

Thursday, March 25, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Don Nerbas, McGill University Associate Professor and Chair in Canadian-Scottish Studies, gives a talk on “Family, Society, and Highland Identity in Industrializing Cape Breton.”

Thursday, April 1, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
To kick off National Poetry Month, poet and performer Rachel McCrum gives a presentation about our vibrant poetry scene.

Thursday, April 8, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Penning the Pandemic – In advance of the book’s launch at the Blue Metropolis Literary Festival, local writers present short pieces from Chronicling the Days, the Quebec Writers’ Federation’s collection on life under the pandemic. Featuring Angela LeuckCarolyn Marie SouaidGreg SantosJoe Bongiorno, and Nisha Coleman in conversation with Crystal Chan.

Thursday, April 15, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Musician, composer and community organizer Janet Lumb plays the saxophone and chats about music and life. She will invite members of the audience to join her and poet K.B.Thors for a two-part online art-making workshop the following week.

Thursday, April 22, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
A talk to mark SHAKESPEARE’S BIRTHDAY by Paul Yachnin, Tomlinson Professor of Shakespeare Studies at McGill University: “My good friend William Shakespeare.”

Thursday, April 29, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Montreal writer and publisher Linda Leith discusses her new memoir, The Girl from Dream City: A Literary Life.

Thursday, May 6, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Confabulation storytellers relate true stories, drawing on their memories and inspired by millennia of oral tradition.

Thursday, May 13, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Bring Out Your DeadMark Gallop, president of Friends of the Mount Royal Cemetery, examines the social and historical implications of the evolution of burial practices in Montreal through the centuries.

Thursday, May 20, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Montreal bibliophile and author Richard King discusses his journey “From Book Selling to Book Writing.”

Thursday, May 27, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
How Digital Technologies Threaten Democracy and What We Can Do About It: A lecture by Taylor Owen, McGill University Beaverbrook Chair in Media, Ethics and Communications and Associate Professor in the Max Bell School of Public Policy. Followed by Q&A and discussion.

Thursday, June 3, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Why does Montreal need more trees, and which kinds are best for your garden and community? Hear the green message from Trees for Life’s Tree Champions Mike de Pencier and Mike Hurley.

Thursday, June 10, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Alexander Reford guides a virtual tour of Jardins de Métis/ Reford Gardens and outlines plans for this summer and fall. Get the information you need to plan an in-person visit to the Gaspé Peninsula and Reford Gardens.

Thursday, June 17, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
WAVES OF CHANGE: A Story Beyond Language – Guy Rex Rodgers, project manager, arts activist and former ELAN executive director, reports on oral history of Quebec’s English-speaking communities, created on the 50th anniversary of the FLQ Crisis. WAVES OF CHANGE is a story documented in a video series about immigration, adaptation, multiple languages, and complex identities.  

Thursday, September 2, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Historian Pierre Anctil gives a talk on the history of the Jews in Quebec. The English translation of his book has been published and is now in the Atwater Library collection.

Thursday, September 9, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Author and playwright Ann Lambert discusses her career and the process of writing and narrating the audiobooks of The Birds That Stay and The Dogs of Winter, mysteries set in the Montreal area. The Atwater Library has the two books in both physical and audiobook formats.

Thursday, September 16, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
PARIS and MORELisa Pasold, originally from Montreal and now dividing her time between New Orleans and Paris, discusses her career as a writer and host of Discovery’s travel show “Paris Next Stop.” Find out about tours of Paris scheduled for 2022.

Thursday, September 23, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Author Kathleen Winter discusses her new novel Undersong, inspired by Dorothy Wordsworth (1771-1855), the English diarist and poet.

Thursday, September 30, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
FORGOTTEN MONTREAL NOVELISTS: Literary historian and anthologist Brian Busby talks about some fascinating Montreal writers of the past – their extraordinary lives and intriguing works.

Thursday, October 7, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Craig Silverman, journalist and author, discusses our information environment and how we can guard against being manipulated or duped by fake news.

Thursday, October 14, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
CRIME FICTION: Montreal-area members of Crime Writers of Canada discuss the pleasures of reading and writing crime fiction. Delvin Chatterson will pose questions to Anna DowdallA.J. FotheringhamRussell FralichMichael Kent and Catherine McKenzie.

Thursday, October 21, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Author Ken Haigh gives an illustrated presentation on his book On Foot to Canterbury: A Son’s Pilgrimage, a finalist for the 2021 Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction.

Thursday, October 28, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Celebrated cartoonist Terry Mosher (Aislin) gives an illustrated presentation on his new book, Aislin’s Favourite COVID Cartoons from Around the World.

Thursday, November 4, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Author and journalist Omar Mouallem discusses his new book Praying to the West: How Muslims Shaped the Americas.

Thursday, November 11, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
FOR REMEMBRANCE DAY: Sarah Glassford, archivist-historian, reflects on Canadian and Newfoundland women and girls during the World Wars.

Thursday, November 18, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Archivist and historian Mario Robert gives a presentation on the writing and archives of Jacques Viger, first mayor of Montréal and founder of the Société historique de Montréal.

Thursday, November 25, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Author Sharon Kirsch discusses her book The Smallest Objective in which she puzzles over the history of her family. The touching memoir is set in Montreal’s Jewish community where the author’s quest for family history is triggered by objects she discovers in her family home after her widowed mother has developed dementia and moves to a seniors residence.

Thursday, December 9, 2021 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm
CHRISTMAS CONCERT: Inspirational singer Barbara Lewis and friends perform Christmas favourites and other touching songs.

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