Workshops on a range of topics in the arts, sciences, and current affairs are generally offered every two weeks at Knox College at the University of Toronto. The workshops are led by member-facilitators, and topics are researched and presented by the members of the class.


Two Weeks At A Glance

Workshop Space Availability

Workshop Room Assignment



Workshop Dates

Week 1 Workshop dates are the weeks beginning:
Tues. Sept. 11, 25, Oct. 9, 23, Nov. 6, 20, Jan. 8, 22, Feb. 5, 19, Mar. 5, 19

Week 2 Workshop dates are the weeks beginning:
 Mon. Sept. 17, Oct. 1, 15, 29, Nov. 12, 26, Jan. 14, 28, Feb. 11, 25, Mar. 11, 25

Workshops listing:

Contemporary Film A

Biweekly, Wednesday, 12-2, Week 2 – Room 5 – Space Available

Please join us for lively discussions of contemporary films. At each meeting we choose two films to view on our own before the next class. Films may be from any genre — indies, art films, block-busters — or whatever moves the class when voting. The two presentations per class will focus on aspects such as themes, production values, and take-home values. We rate the films individually, and then compare our class rating to the Internet rating, just for fun. For the first session, the facilitator will contact registered members with the two films for consideration and solicit volunteers for presentations.

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Contemporary Film B

Biweekly, Thursday, 12-2, Week 2 – Room 5 – Workshop Full

Welcome to all Film Fans! In each session we jointly choose two contemporary films. Each member is then expected to view and rate them, based on a set of criteria developed by the group, as well as their personal enjoyment. This has been a lively workshop where members are never at a loss for discussion. Members will take turns introducing the films, but everyone should come prepared to discuss them.

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Cultural History of Food and Drink

Biweekly, Tuesday, 10-12, Week 1 – Room 1 – Space Available

Since earliest times, foods and beverages have shaped human culture and acted as catalysts for social change, industrial development, military conflict, religion, exploration, medicine, and human rights. Join us as we explore topics such as food in space, the great beer flood, famine as a weapon of war, the relationship between food and death, food and witchcraft, symbolism of food in art, and the importance of food rituals to culture and relationships. With a broad range of subjects from which to select, and no required readings, you will have an opportunity to explore in detail any presentation topic that inspires you, and each session will have time for plenty of lively discussion.

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Dance Me To The End Of Time – NEW

Biweekly, Wednesday, 12-2, Week 1 – Room 5 – Space Available

Explore great choreographers, dancers and dance companies that have shaped and changed the language of dance. Our focus will be ballet and its evolution to modern and contemporary dance. Each participant will research and do one presentation, followed by the discussion of a great choreographer, dancer, or dance company, highlighting the history, social context, and significance to dance. Be inspired by Nijinsky, Martha Graham, Nureyev, and many others, and learn more about dance.

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Documentary Film

Biweekly, Monday 10-2, Week 2 – Robarts Media Commons / Robarts Library 3/F – Workshop Full

Venue – Robarts Media Commons, Robarts Library

Documentary films reflect the richness and ambiguity of life, bringing us real stories from the world around us. Together we will explore this exciting medium by presenting films on a wide variety of topics: social issues, the arts, politics, science, and human interest. All films (some of which may contain subtitles) will be screened in class, with group members making brief presentations on various aspects of the films, the filmmakers and themes introduced, as well as leading the discussion. All documentaries will be available from various sources (TPL, Netflix, etc.) or provided on DVD by the facilitators in advance.

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Dynamite Writing: Nobel Prize Winners For Literature – NEW

Biweekly, Friday, 10-12, Week 2 – Room 1 – Space Available

Since 1901, the Nobel committee has awarded their top prize for literature to 114 writers. You will be asked to choose one author to present to the group, followed by discussion on his/her work and whether or not you agree with the choice. This is a chance to examine the writing of someone you know nothing about or expand on a favourite author. A list of prizewinners will be available.

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Economist Readers

Weekly, Thursday, 10-12, Weeks 1 & 2 – Room 1 – Workshop Full

This group will meet to extract the wit and wisdom in politics, business, finance, culture, literature and science from this influential international journal. Subscription copies can be delivered by mail (phone 1-800-456-6086) or e-mail ( At each session, the group selects about a dozen articles and the discussion is led by the person proposing each article.

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Events Of The Week

Weekly, Friday, 2-4, Weeks 1 & 2 – Room 5 – Space Available

This workshop is focused on discussions of current events. Members suggest topics of interest; they are expected to be aware of events reported in the various media and to come prepared to discuss them. Each session will begin with a listing of the proposed events of interest, followed by a short presentation of each event by the member who suggested it, and then by discussion.

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Exploring The Social History Of Medicine – NEW

Biweekly, Wednesday, 10-12, Week 2 – Room 1 – Space Available

This workshop will focus on the social rather than the technical aspects of the history of medicine; and how societies have changed in their approach to illness and disease from ancient times. Together, we will explore topics such as early medical traditions, battlefield medicine, germ theory, and public health. And we will also look into the seedier side, with investigations into quackery, cures and potions, and medicine and magic.

With a broad range of subjects from which to select, and no required readings, you will have an opportunity to explore in detail any presentation topic that inspires you, and each session will have time for plenty of lively discussion.

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How Technology Changed Society: 1990 – Now

Biweekly, Friday, 10-12, Week 1 – Room 5 – Workshop Full

Over the last three years we have looked at the effect of technology on society (and vice versa), from farming in 10,000 BCE to 1990. At the end, we come up to now. Our emphasis is on societal changes rather than the details of individual technologies. We take a worldwide view and have a loose definition of technology, which may include transportation, object-making, information manipulation, and other topics of interest to the group. Mostly, there is no required preparation for a session, except for your own presentation, and twice, a small amount of research in preparation for a group discussion.

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