Skip to main content
Photograph of Nahlah Ayed



Lazaridis Hall, Tom Patterson Theatre
Saturday, July 9
10:30 a.m. to noon

Ideas at Stratford:  The Shock of the New

Why does change happen? Human society seems to lean towards things not changing at all. And why do there seem to be moments in history where a tsunami of significant things happen at more-or-less the same time? And what about events perhaps years beforehand, the tremors that might have set the stage for the earthquake?

Moderated by Ideas host Nahlah Ayed, The Shock of the New is a series of panel discussions about five years that profoundly shaped the modern world, ‘hinge’ years that have had a profound effect on our lives today. Each year signifies a ‘new beginning’ in politics, the sciences, human rights - and illuminates some of the obvious and not-so-obvious forces that have shaped the modern world.

In photo: Nahlah Ayed 

The Year 1600: The Birth of the Modern?

Empires are exploding, globalization is becoming a force, Shakespeare is writing Hamlet, Twelfth Night, and Julius Caesar, and friar, scientist, and mathematician Giordano Bruno is burnt at the stake.

Jyotsna Singh is a professor of English at Michigan State University. She teaches and researches early modern literature and culture, including the Global Renaissance, Shakespeare, travel writing, postcolonial theory, early modern histories of Islam, and gender and race studies.

Chris Smeenk is a professor of Philosophy at Western University. His main research interests are in history and philosophy of physics, the philosophy of science, and seventeenth century natural philosophy.

Amitava Chowdhury is a historian and director of the Global History Initiative at Queens University. Much of his research is about diasporas and the history of the Indian Ocean region, and he's also interested in colonialism as well as issues of identity and nationalism.

Support for The Meighen Forum is generously provided by Kelly & Michael Meighen and The T.R. Meighen Family Foundation.

  • Share on Pinterest

Event Schedule

1 Remaining Performances

Take advantage of our various savings programs throughout the season. Click here to learn about our discounts and deals.