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During the 42nd edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors, hear from authors, activists and experts as they take part in live, candid conversation to reflect on the topics that matter most in this unprecedented time. These enlightening discussions on crises of health, housing, resources and justice examine how local, national and international politics, technology and culture are helping or hurting our collective sustainability. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation.

These panels are proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle


Each event will be available to view for 72 hours after the indicated start time. All times are in ET.

TIFA 2021 Festival General Banner

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Humanity’s quest to reach the stars began with wondering about the universe and whether we are alone in it, but among the big questions that drive us to pursue space travel, we must ask ourselves about its environmental impact on planet Earth, and how we can advocate for a more ethical, equitable future in space. This illuminating, engaging panel discussion, with Charles S. Cockell, Divya Persaud, Michael Byers and moderated by Sara Mazrouei, examines how to build a sustainable future in the pursuit of broadening our horizons in space.

Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. This impactful panel discussion with Indigenous scholars and writers Chief Bev Sellars (Xat’sull), Anne Spice (Tlingit member of Kwanlin Dun First Nation) and Kisha Supernant (Métis/Papaschase/British), will look at the resurgence of Indigenous legal and governance systems intentionally moving away from settler colonial institutions. Panelists will explore, with moderator Gina Starblanket (Cree and Saulteaux), how the law can be harnessed to promote the well-being and self-determination of Indigenous peoples, and the path that lies ahead to finding truth and reconciliation in this country, particularly after a year that has seen the heartbreaking discovery of thousands of unmarked burials at former residential schools. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

The topics discussed in this event may be heavy for some. Feel free to step away as needed to take care of yourselves. The event will be recorded and available for 72 hours after airing.

The Hope for Wellness Help Line is open to all Indigenous peoples across Canada for 24/7 for counselling and crisis intervention. Call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat at hopeforwellness.ca.

Former residential school students can also call 1-866-925-4419 for emotional crisis referral services and information on other health supports.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Moderated by Director of Research at The Shift, Kaitlin Schwan, this panel discussion will delve into the many complexities and conditions that have led to Toronto’s homelessness crisis. Panelists Juha Kaakinen, Cheyanne Ratnam and Emily Wright will examine the ways in which current strategies for addressing homelessness especially fail to serve youth. From aging out of the care system unprepared, to inter-generational trauma, the panelists will discuss best practices for eradicating homelessness in Toronto and on an international scale. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. As the world continues to traverse the COVID-19 pandemic, the race to vaccinate populations against the virus has raised many ethical questions. This panel discussion, with panelists Maxwell J. Smith, Kate Choi, Safura Abdool Karim and moderator Ananya Tina Banerjee, examines the moral obligation to be vaccinated and share supplies, as well as the impact of vaccine inequity and the racial and socioeconomic factors that contribute to it. As questions around vaccine passports and differing legislation circulate ahead of a fourth wave, these key topics have a direct impact on day-to-day life in Canada and around the world. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Following the disturbing events that took place in long-term care homes across Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic, new policies, strategies and considerations are essential for the future of elder care. Moderated by medical anthropologist Lenore Manderson, event panelists Pat Armstrong, Sarah Lamb and Aalyia Feroz Ali Sadruddin will take part in this discussion on addressing inequities in the health of an aging population. Panelists will also share their diverse and intercontinental research into the anthropology of health and aging, how various cultures and diaspora traverse the aging process, the idea of “successful aging” as a contemporary obsession, and the economics of aging.

Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. For youth, the global pandemic has been a long haul of restrictions, isolation and uncertainty and many have faced significant impacts on their mental health. They have been coping with disrupted schooling, cancelled sports and community programs, heightened family stressors and feeling cut-off from friends. Youth, especially those who are already marginalized, are struggling more than ever with anxiety, depression, substance use, self-injury, and eating disorders. This panel discussion, with Betty Lai, Amy Nam, Shanita Brown and Melanie Siebert, will focus on the changes youth are calling for and explore strategies to support them to thrive. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

The topics discussed in this event may be heavy for some. Feel free to step away as needed to take care of yourselves. The event will be recorded and available for 72 hours after airing.

If you need support, please reach out to:

Kids Help Phone
Kids Help Phone’s e-mental health services are available 24/7 across Canada. This means that they’re here for kids, teens and young adults from coast to coast to coast. Visit them here: kidshelpphone.ca

CAMH Resources
If you are in an emergency, in crisis or need someone to talk to, there is a list of resources available for areas in and around Toronto. Learn more here: camh.ca/en/health-info/crisis-resources

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Scientists have been researching greenhouse gas emission levels from vehicle exhaust and comparing levels from before and during the pandemic. To what extent has air quality changed in Toronto and beyond as a result of lockdowns and decreased human activity? The results may not be what you think. Join us for an engaging panel discussion, with panelists Andrew Jorgenson, Matthew Adams, Rebecca Saari and moderator Lidia Morawska, uncovering research on how air quality has been affected by coronavirus-related changes to transportation patterns, energy use and industrial operations, as well as longterm implications for the environment and public health. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Moderated by Kate J. Neville, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto Department of Political Science and the School of the Environment, this illuminating panel discussion, with Deborah McGregor, Emma S. Norman and Aimée Craft will focus on the basic human right to clean water; resource governance in Canada; water access and environmental justice on Indigenous lands; and the political implications surrounding global commodity markets. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world.

English captioning is available for this video. Please click the ‘CC’ button in the video toolbar to turn it on.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

To celebrate Syrus Marcus Ware’s new event in The New Embassy series, taking place on April 26 at 7pm ET, this event will be re-released for 72 hours starting on April 21, 2022.

Authors and experts in candid, live conversation reflect on the topics that matter most during this unprecedented time. Tune in each day of the Festival to hear new speakers in critical conversation about the topics shaping today’s world. As activists and communities around the world work to address the climate crisis, its intersection with disability rights and policies is a vital consideration. This engaging conversation brings together published panelists Jen Deerinwater, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Syrus Marcus Ware and Petra Kuppers to discuss the overlap between climate activism and improving inequities in disability worldmaking.

ASL interpreters and captioning was provided for this event. For questions regarding accessibility, please contact support@festivalofauthors.ca or call 416-973-4760. This event is presented in partnership with the CoMotion Festival.

Proudly supported by
Harriet Lewis and Eldon Bennett
Andrew and Valerie Pringle

Disability Rights event banner. Red background with TIFA Logo and image of a painted disability sign from a parking lot.