Event Date: December 3, 2015 - 12:00
Location: Social Sciences Building, 120 University Pvt., room 4006
DAVID MUTIMER, York University.
Presented by the CIPS, the International Theory Network (ITN) and the Security Study Network (SSN).
Free. In English. Registration is not required. Seating is limited and available on a first come, first served basis.
The Global War on Terror launched in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks on the United States has had a series of perverse effects. At its most egregious, it has licensed the return of torture and political assassination (now known as ‘targeted killing’), as well as the widespread degradation of personal privacy. Closely tied to these effects has been a growing militarisation of Western societies. In Canada this militarisation has been most noticeable in public acts, such as the designation of a stretch of Canada’s busiest highway as ‘the Highway of Heroes’, and the escalating presence of the military at sporting events. It is, however, a much more widespread phenomenon. This talk begins to explore the militarisation of Canadian society in and through its popular culture, jumping off from an analysis of two particular artefacts: an ‘award winning’ CBC Radio drama, Afghanada, and a children’s book, Road to Afghanistan, which is distributed by Scholastic Books to schools across the country.
David Mutimer is Professor of International Politics and Chair of the Department of Political Science at York University, and is the Founding Editor of Critical Studies on Security. His research considers issues of contemporary international security through lenses provided by critical social theory, as well as inquiring into the reproduction of security in and through popular culture. Much of that work has focused on weapons proliferation as a reconfigured security concern in the post-cold war era, and has tried to open possibilities for alternative means of thinking about the security problems related to arms more generally. In the past few years this programme of research has concentrated on small arms and light weapons. More recently he has turned his attention to the politics of the global war on terror, and of the regional wars around the world presently being fought by Canada and its allies. He also writes about the history and sociology of Critical Security Studies.
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