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What on Earth is Going on? is a podcast for the curious, where small talk is banned and tangents are prized. Strap yourself in for genuine dialogues with people who think deeply and are ready to tackle the big questions, such as broadcaster Terry O'Reilly, economist Miles Corak and journalist Jessica Vomiero.

Join Ben Charland to peel back the headlines and ask, what are the forces, people and ideas that shape the human story today? Have things always been this nuts, or are they getting crazier by the day? From the Mafia to the Beavertonwomen in politics to women in leadershiphistory to artificial intelligence, and entrepreneurship in the digital age to the art of wheelchair fencing, just what on Earth is going on?

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Sep 14, 2018

Institutions and norms, both written and unwritten, underpin our rule-of-law, human rights-respecting democracies. Some of these have evolved to serve a dynamic and diverse society. Others have withstanded centuries of disruption and change. But it seems that many of them are now under threat in an era of flux and populism. What are the deeper forces at play, and what's beneath the constant churn of consumer partisanship and identity politics?

Ben is in Toronto to speak with Dr. Miriam Smith, Professor of Social Science at York University

About the Guest

Miriam is a professor in the Law & Society Program in the Department of Social Science at York University. Previously, she held full-time faculty positions in political science at Carleton University (1989-2004) and Trent University (2004-2007). She received her B.A. in political science in 1982 from McGill University and her Ph.D. in political science from Yale University in 1990. Her research areas include Canadian and comparative politics, social movements, legal mobilization and public policy, especially, the LGBT movement in Canada in comparative perspective.

Learn more about Miriam.