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Filip Zrnzevic (Unsplash)

Indigenous peoples protect 80% of the world’s biodiversity despite only making up 5% of the global population. Land conservation efforts look to traditional Indigenous knowledge to mend humans’ dynamic with the earth.

West of Yellowknife, toward the southwestern area of the Northwest Territories, we enter the ancestral lands of the Dehcho First Nations — a region full of terrestrial and aquatic habitats, home to over 250 species of flora and fauna. At the heart of the Dehcho region is Horn Plateau, or rather, what the Dehcho people prefer to call Edéhzhíe (eh-day-shae). Amidst these mountainous boreal forests, we might spot the elusive woodland caribou — commonly dubbed as the grey ghosts of the woods. …


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More people are avoiding affiliations with people of differing political views. Can conservatives and liberals still be friendly in a polarized political landscape?

It’s hard to pinpoint how exactly the dinner table became just as known for being a site of contention as it is of togetherness. After the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election, we can safely assume plenty of dinner tables across the continent have turned into verbal battlegrounds. Family gatherings can transform into treacherous territory when politics are invited to spoil the party.

We can’t choose our families, but political discourse can erupt at any social interaction. This can apply to the working world, as well as among our circle of friends. …


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Credit: NEON

South Korean director Bong Joon-ho satirizes class warfare in his Cannes-winning black comedy. ‘Parasite’ is set to sweep the Best Foreign Language Picture category in the upcoming awards season.

Bong Joon-ho writes and directs his films similarly to how an architect blueprints a building — with devotion to structure and precision. Among film industry circles, he developed a reputation for his meticulous directorial style; while other directors are malleable to improvising the filmmaking process, Bong storyboards almost every frame to make sure each scene is composed and shot the way he envisioned them. He would make paper copies of these storyboards — which resemble pages of a manga — and hand them out to his cast and crew prior to filming. …


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Credit: Universal Pictures

Tom Hooper’s adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit Broadway musical is a litter box full of nightmares. ‘Cats’ is the ravaged corpse of a backyard critter that Hollywood fat cats dragged in theatres.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Albert Schweitzer once said, “There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.”

Andrew Lloyd Webber had the same idea, but he mutated it in the most outlandish way possible. He concocted Cats: The Musical — a Broadway stage production that has both fascinated and perturbed theatre audiences since 1981. Now, Cats has pounced from the stage to the big screen, luring in the morbid curiosity of movie-goers everywhere.

What did I take away from Cats? If I were to give it any credit, we can say it innovated a new breed of visual monstrosity. We find the felines — dubbed the ‘Jellicle’ cats — portrayed by humans donning body suits enwrapped with CGI furs. Except it was more like the naked human physique had grown cat ears, a live tail, and coats of fur that sprouted from their skin. The film boasts a star-studded cast from the likes of Judi Dench, Idris Elba, and Taylor Swift, who raucously belt out showtunes that would ring in your nightmares. …


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Erik McLean (Unsplash)

Businesses, schools, and governments are becoming game designers. Through rewards programs and challenges, organizations are applying the principles of ‘gamification’ to win your loyalty and engagement.

Is life just like a game?

If you’re a task-driven individual, it’s possible that you see it this way. You choose your weapons, level up, accept challenges, and unlock achievements along the way. For any goal — whether it be succeeding in school, meeting sales targets, or losing weight — applying elements of game design could help you build a road map. Adopting a ‘game brain’ would not only make these goals seem more achievable, but also more engaging.

On the other hand, you may also caution against treating reality like an arena. When something needs to be taken seriously, someone may chide, “This isn’t a game!” Games are closely associated with playfulness, giving the impression of disrespect and dismissiveness. Viewing life as a game could ultimately be a simplistic outlook. After all, there’s more to ‘winning at life’ than acquiring points and accessing levels. Unlike the imaginary stakes of virtual gaming worlds, solving problems in real-life helps avoid real-life consequences. …


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French director Céline Sciamma’s historical lesbian romance paints a transfixing and emotional portrait.

Characteristic of its title, Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a romanticist painting in cinematic form. Céline Sciamma’s directorial style channels the hypnotic allure of a painting. Audiences are invited to immerse in the mastery of its composition — from the interwoven cinematographic shades of light and dark, to the subjects’ emotions on display, to the director’s use of symbolism and mystery.

Set in the 18th century, the story takes place on the coast of Brittany, France-an isolated part of the country where acts of taboo (like same-sex relationships) can escape surveillance. The picturesque backdrop of the French seaside sets the stage for a quiet, yet tension-filled romance between two women — a young painter and her enigmatic subject. …


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Photo by Pierre Gui on Unsplash

The sales of vinyl records, cassette tapes, and classic video game consoles have surged in the past several years. Is it because of technophobia, nostalgic longing, hipster aesthetics, or all of the above?

Walk into a modern music store, and you’ll likely find yourself standing amidst a culture clash between old and new; they vie for your attention, as well as your dollar. When I stepped inside a Sunrise Records mall outlet, racks of vinyl records greeted me at the storefront. Here, you can purchase a gramophone to play your vinyl records, or even a Walkman to play old cassette tapes. As I made my way further in the shop, I saw the latest Funko Pops and Blu-Ray releases. …


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Conceptual artist Mowry Baden. Image courtesy of the Vancouver Art Gallery.

B.C.-based conceptual artist Mowry Baden uses perceptual psychology, science, and architecture to engage viewers to participate in his art. The Vancouver Art Gallery is featuring a 15-piece exhibition of his works that will run until June 9th, 2019.

“Have any of you danced with a mop bucket?” asked Mowry Baden, standing before a small crowd of journalists touring his Vancouver Art Gallery exhibit. He was introducing his 2015 sculpture, Trisector-a stainless-steel carousel with mop buckets attached on three edges; the work can be described as ‘part playground, part industrial device’, occupying almost an entire room in the gallery.

“It’s a serious question,” he quipped. Baden-a retired art professor at the University of Victoria-scanned the room as if he was assessing a lecture hall of freshmen on their first day of class. “There’s one hand. Two. Three! Good.” …


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The Friend 2 Friend Social Learning Society is using virtual reality technology (VR) to help enable people to empathize with children who have autism. As part of the Autism Demystification® program, the organization aims to foster peer social relationships

One in 66 Canadian children have autism , or what is more appropriately termed autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Most commonly, this condition is characterized by hardships with social interaction and repetitive behaviours. Given these characteristics, what resulted is a widespread misconception about autism being a so-called ‘empathy disorder’ , or the stereotype of people with autism having a lack of empathy. …


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BCIT Communications instructor Tessa Jordan discusses the impact of cultural production on Canadian feminist history. Her upcoming book, Feminist Acts, examines how the 1970s women’s magazine, Branching Out, contributed to Canadian feminism.

In the summer of 1975, Rosemary Brown was making Canadian history as the first black woman to run for leadership of a federal party. She, along with the other candidates running for leadership of the federal NDP, appeared at a ‘meet the candidates’ event in Edmonton, Alberta. Sharon Batt, the editor of the magazine Branching Out, was there to witness the event unfold. While there, Batt made note of how many members of the audience, like herself, attended specifically to see Brown. This made her wonder, “Why haven’t we read more about Rosemary Brown in the newspapers?”¹ …

Ali Pitargue

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