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Dal 200 planning profile: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Toward 200: A look at what FASS has in store for 2018

- April 21, 2017

Left: A first edition of Frankenstein. Middle: George Elliott Clarke. Right: Dal's Ondaatje Auditorium.
Left: A first edition of Frankenstein. Middle: George Elliott Clarke. Right: Dal's Ondaatje Auditorium.

This article is part of an ongoing series highlighting plans in the works for Dalhousie’s 200th anniversary celebrations in 2018. For more information on Dal 200, visit dal200.ca.

Stage, song and celebrating scholarship — just a sampling of what the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) has in store for Dalhousie's bicentennial anniversary next year.

Frank Harvey, dean of FASS, says that faculty and staff have been working on a series of projects to mark Dal’s milestone year that will be engaging, inclusive, thoughtful and fun.

“We’re actively involved in organizing a number of exciting and inspiring performances, commissioned poems, community events, and academic seminars that will celebrate Dalhousie's legacy by highlighting the enduring value of a strong and vibrant liberal arts education,” he says.

In 2018, FASS will feature its contributions to literature, languages, the performing arts, international development, social justice and philosophical thinking, and its strong commitments to research and teaching. The Faculty also aims to celebrate the significant contributions and achievements of its alumni, faculty and students.

Several FASS departments will be represented as part of Dalhousie’s celebrations. For example, the Fountain School of Performing Arts has a number of initiatives aimed at showcasing the creative spirit of Dal’s inaugural year, 1818:

  • Students will be leading an original stage production of Frankenstein as part of the Fountain School’s annual season. The adaptation of Mary Shelley’s novel, which was published the same year Dalhousie was founded, will be a fresh and spectacular production featuring a specially commissioned script and music as well as enhanced stage production.
  • A “Schubertiade” in celebration of luminary composer Franz Schubert, who completed his sixth symphony in 1818 and was central to a Viennese salon culture of artistic exploration that resonates down the centuries. The event will be an intimate evening of chamber music and poetry evoking the vibrant intellectual and artistic energies of 1818.
  • A composition contest among Dal music students & alumni for a new Dal convocation composition which will be performed by a Symphony Brass Quintet at the Bicentennial Address in February 2018 and during convocation ceremonies that year.

With support from the Department of English and the Creative Writing Program, distinguished alumnus George Elliott Clarke — poet, novelist, scholar and currently Canada’s parliamentary poet laureate — has been invited to write a poem in honour of Dalhousie’s anniversary. A superb speaker, Clarke will read the poem at the Bicentennial Address in February. The poem will also be translated into various languages taught at Dalhousie.

And the Scholar-Citizen project will span several departments, showcasing the contributions of Dalhousie’s social scientists and philosophers to public policy and social development. These inclusive, community events will highlight experts in our departments of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Philosophy, and International Development Studies, and will focus on topics such as “Social Science for Social Justice,” “Philosophy and Feminist Bioethics,” and “Our Alumni Change the World.”

Look for more details on these and other activities from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences as Dal’s 200th approaches.


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