The Sunday Magazine

The Sunday Edition for September 15, 2019

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

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

Confessions of a smartphone addict - Michael's Essay: "I had an odd reaction to losing my phone. It wasn't quite panic but I regarded the loss as something extremely serious. I had pooh-poohed those pitiable creatures welded to their phones, but now I was experiencing an empty sense of loss which I never expected. Was it conceivable that I had become as addicted to my phone as they were to theirs?" 

Democratic disengagement and disaffection: It's fair to say that there's an odour of cynicism in the autumn air with an election five weeks away. Author and electoral reform advocate Dave Meslin, political scientist Melanee Thomas and former Conservative senator and long-time political insider Hugh Segal join Michael Enright for a lively discussion about how well Canadian voters are served by our parliamentary democracy — and how well our parliamentary democracy is served by voters.  

An unlikely musical partnership: Maxim Bergeron is a teenaged violin virtuoso from Berlin. Gilles Losier is an 83-year-old Acadian pianist from New Brunswick. The bond between them was forged by the music of a legendary Quebec musician who died more than 30 years ago:  Ti-Jean Carignan, who was hailed in his Order of Canada citation as North America's greatest fiddler. David Gutnick's documentary is called "It Sounds Like The Fiddle is Laughing."

The wit and wisdom of the late Desmond Morton: We pay tribute to the great Canadian historian and public intellectual Desmond Morton, who died on Sept. 4, by digging into The Sunday Edition vaults for his insights on an issue that's as relevant as ever in this political season: Promises, and what they're really worth — especially when it's politicians who are making them.

The struggle to drop the urge to shop: Our economy is built on consumer capitalism, but endless consumption takes a heavy toll on the planet and our bank accounts. Dorothy Woodend tells of her efforts to end her love affair with buying stuff in her essay, "Shop No More."

Building urban utopias from scratch: It's an urbanization trend that's taking off around the world. Take swaths of undeveloped land, add steel, concrete, technology, political capital and heaps of money ... and voila: Instant cities -- ones that promise low environmental impacts and high quality of life. Sarah Moser of McGill University talks about this global phenomenon and how well it delivers on its promise.

Is meatless meat really better for your health and the planet?: Meat — especially beef — has been getting a bad rap in recent years for the toll it takes on the planet and our health. Hence the soaring popularity of meatless burgers that still look, smell and taste like real meat. But Jim Thomas, a Co-Executive Director and Researcher with the ETC Group in Quebec, says we should think again about whether highly-processed meat substitutes are a real solution.