The Sunday Magazine

The Sunday Edition for October 20, 2019

Listen to this week's episode with host Michael Enright.

Listen to this week's episode of The Sunday Edition with Michael Enright

Michael's essay — Bulletproof vests on the campaign trail: "Has it really come to this? Has our politics moved from booing and the occasional rotten egg to a need for body armour? Earlier this week, a group of seniors, some of them lawyers, was sitting around a breakfast table. Each was asked if he could remember a nastier political campaign. Each said, categorically, not in his lifetime. One used the word 'vile.'"

Where's the political will to solve Canada's housing crisis? Canada's major political parties have responded to a severe lack of affordable housing by promising to make it easier for people to buy a house. But for people who find it difficult to cover the cost of renting, there's not much immediate relief on offer. Michael Enright asks why it seems impossible to get adequate affordable housing built in this country with: Leilani Farha, the United Nations' Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing; John van Nostrand, an architect and planner; and Cathy Crowe, a street nurse and advocate for the homeless. 

'That's not my cat!': If good fences make good neighbours, what does a fickle black feline make? Oliver Gunther tells of a somewhat frosty relationship between people who live side by side, who share only one thing. His story is called, "That's Not My Cat." 

Kurds take stock of being abandoned by Western allies, again: The past century has been an often painful and bitter one for Kurds. They've been denied a homeland that was promised them. They've been massacred by Saddam Hussein. And now they've been abandoned by Western allies and fallen under military attack yet again. Kamran Matin, a Kurdish expert on the Middle East and international relations at the University of Sussex, talks about the world's largest ethnic group without its own state.

Brain Bilston may be the Banksy of poetry: A few years, a man calling himself Brian Bilston scribbled a short poem and posted it on Twitter.  He hadn't thought of himself as a poet, but three books and almost 70,000 followers later, he's become known as the unofficial poet laureate of Twitter and the Banksy of poetry. His poems are whimsical, serious, poignant, funny and, sometimes, visual, and he's been called "the greatest English anti-hero of our time, with a black belt in procrastination."

Remembering Harold Bloom: It's been said that he read everything. And he seemed to remember everything he read. And he wrote about more of it than just about anyone. Harold Bloom — the most important and best-known literary critic of his time and a bestselling author — died on Monday at the age of 89. We'll pay tribute with Michael Enright's 2005 interview with Professor Bloom — about literary greatness, mortality and the search for wisdom. 

Canadian voters in Hong Kong: For the first time, Canadians who have been living abroad for more than five years are able to vote in the federal election. Our largest ex-pat community is in Hong Kong, home to more than 300,000 Canadians. Three Canadian citizens active in Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement discuss their thoughts about the election and the role Canada could play in safeguarding democracy and the rights of Canadians abroad.

Listener mail: Religion and politics, and immigration.

Music by: Joe Sealy, Massive Attack, Kacy and Clayton, Wray Downes, Quincy Jones, Benjamin Britten, Ben Paterson, and W.A. Mozart.  


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