1. Ideas become powerful when they are shared with others. This is a simple and somewhat obvious statement, yet understanding why it is true is key to realizing the value of offline idea-sharing spaces and places like #hatch (hatchtoronto.tumblr.com/). Andrea Hamilton will engage the group in hatching a few ideas to demonstrate the importance of connecting with people in your community to turn ideas into action and change the world.

    Andrea works at Ontario’s largest innovation centre, MaRSDD, and is a passionate advocate of city building and cross-sectoral collaboration. She recently co-founded #hatch, an offline ideas forum for big thinkers in Toronto that unites these two passions through casual, inspiring events. Since Andrea started at MaRS she has been lucky to work in a variety of program areas, learning from industry experts and entrepreneurs alike about emerging industries like ICT, Social Innovation, and Cleantech. Andrea is now brokering partnerships for an exciting project that connects innovation organizations and actors to build a picture of the startup and innovation landscape in Ontario.

    Andrea Recommends:

    * I just read the Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt – loved it. The characters were fabulous – hilarious, sad and hopeful.
    * Corn Nuts. A delicious snack food: Salty, BBQ flavour, easy to carry around, and they have fabulous crunch.

    # vimeo.com/46839220 Uploaded 109 Plays 0 Comments
  2. This Talk will involve the delivery of a ‘rap’ on the Harper Government as mirroring U.S. Republican Party policies and tactics. It will include a discussion of ways to make opposition to government more effective rhetorically.

    George Elliott Clarke, O.C., O.N.S., is a lauded poet and writer. He is also a pioneering scholar of African-Canadian literature, serving currently as the E.J. Pratt Professor of Canadian Literature at the University of Toronto.

    George Recommends:

    * An Introduction to the Introduction to Wang Wei by Pain Not Bread (Roo Borson, Kim Maltman, Andy Patton), Brick Books, 1999. The intersection of politics, poetry, social relations, and nature observation is beautiful, truly humanistic.
    * Battle of Algiers (1966), an Italian cinema verite recreation of the struggle of Algerians to be free of French colonialism/imperialism, 1958-62. The film is a great testament to human desire for liberty. Drink Punt e Mes while watching….

    # vimeo.com/46831166 Uploaded 51 Plays 0 Comments
  3. What are thoughts made of? In a series of guided meditations author Jeff Warren will help audience members tease apart the elements of thought, introducing them to their own unique patterns of thinking and feeling, every bit as individual as their fingerprints.

    Jeff Warren (jeffwarren.org/) is a writer, broadcaster, public speaker, and all-purpose enthusiast. His primary subject is the mind – the cutting-edge of neuroscience and philosophy – made fun and accessible. He is the author of The Head Trip: Adventures on the Wheel of Consciousness (Random House 2007), an acclaimed travel guide through sleeping, dreaming and waking consciousness that critics called “exhilarating,” “enchanting,” “audacious,” “hilarious,” “mind-blowing” and even “visionary,” though perhaps that was a typo. His piece on the fashionable jungle psychedelic ayahuasca won Gold Medal at the National Magazine Awards and has been anthologized in the 2011 Best Canadian Essays. Jeff’s writing has appeared in many newspapers and magazines, from The New Scientist to The Walrus to the Globe and Mail. He is a former radio producer for CBC’s The Current, Ideas and Tapestry. His latest greatest passion is teaching people how to shift their experience of reality, aka meditate.

    Jeff Recommends:

    * Becoming Animal by David Abram. A wild descent into your preverbal body, the part of you that connected and danced with nature before complex technology came along and dissociated you. Gorgeous, shamanic – utterly transformed my experience of walking through the woods.
    * I recommend the practice of walking around the world and seeing everything alive as a person. Look at trees the way you’d look at people at a dinner party – with anticipation, like they may have something to teach you. Look at cats this way. At beetles. Soften your gaze and open the back of your throat and see what kind of vague intimations come flitting up and in. Yeah, it sounds a bit like New Age bullshit, but it was once a way of living for most of humanity. Try it and see what happens.

    # vimeo.com/46823140 Uploaded 370 Plays 0 Comments
  4. Mariella will provide an historical context for fairy tales, talk about the psychoanalytical (Bettlheim) and the socio-historical approach (she may quote/mention any of Warner, Tatar, Zipes). She will likely also talk a bit about Disney. Together we will explore the facts and fiction of fairytales; the audience will be involved in small group discussions, and in retelling the stories we remember from our childhoods. We may also try to invent together (if there is time) the story of a princess “Fairytale” using the fairy tale paradigm: princesses and princes, enchanted places or people, (a witch or wizard or a fairy, a dragon?) magic objects?…Will the fairy tale princess live happily ever after?

    Mariella is a Toronto-based storyteller and librarian. She has performed extensively at International Festivals and events around the world. She loves the sound of words (in more than one language) and she relishes speaking (or hearing) words streamlined just so, to tell a good story.

    Mariella Recommends:
    * Italian Folktales by Italo Calvino
    * Sandbanks Provincial Park, because I used to go there with my boys and loved playing in the sand dunes. It’s a place that has its kind of magic.

    # vimeo.com/43093743 Uploaded 108 Plays 0 Comments
  5. Ever since Darwin, the typical sex differences – e.g. combative males and choosy females – have been attributed to greater sexual selection (mating competition) of males. Darryl’s interest is in the factors that ultimately control these differences. He examines these factors by unraveling the biology of exceptional role-reversed insects in which the females rather than males compete for mates. The study of sexual selection and its influence is a useful exercise in thinking critically about evolutionary processes.

    Darryl Gwynne is Professor of Biology at the University of Toronto in Mississauga. He has had a life-long fascination with insects which eventually led to a B.Sc. in Biology at the University of Toronto in 1974 and a Ph.D. in Zoology and Entomology from Colorado State University in 1979 (followed by fellowships including a Queen Elizabeth II scholarship at The University of Western Australia). Darryl’s research uses insects to examine Darwinian sexual selection, especially the ultimate question of why, in animals, males are usually the sexually competitive sex. Darryl is author or coauthor of over 100 scientific papers, several popular articles and two books. He has almost completed a new book, a popular tome on lessons about sexual differences (focusing on “backyard bugs” near his home in the Credit River Valley). He is a Fellow of the Animal Behavior Society and was awarded the 2011 Ignobel Prize in Biology (for “a study that first makes you laugh the makes you think” – in this case a sex-differences study showing how male beetles attempt to copulate with beer bottles.)

    Darryl Recommends:
    * Sex, Genes and Rock ‘n’ Roll: How Evolution Has Shaped the Modern World by Rob Brooks (available through Chapters). This is the best book I have read on an evolutionary understanding of human nature (with some great stuff on sexual selection)
    * The recently published Free Will by the best of critical thinkers, Sam Harris (more of a long essay than a book!)
    * The 1995 movie adaptation of the A.S. Byatt short story “Angels and Insects” the only film I know that features Darwinian sexual and social selection and weaves together a beautiful (and in parts kinky) story about an 1800s naturalist/entomologist from a low socioeconomic background, and the social and sexual differences revealed when he marries into wealth.

    # vimeo.com/43010286 Uploaded 205 Plays 0 Comments

Treehouse Talks

Treehouse Group Plus

Since 2010 the Treehouse Talks have been a great opportunity for some of Toronto's most curious and creative people to connect with one-another over great conversations, sparked by dynamic groups of speakers.

3 people x 3 topics = 1,000 ideas


+ More

Since 2010 the Treehouse Talks have been a great opportunity for some of Toronto's most curious and creative people to connect with one-another over great conversations, sparked by dynamic groups of speakers.

3 people x 3 topics = 1,000 ideas

All Treehouse Talks are free for anyone who would like to come.

Browse This Channel

Shout Box

Heads up: the shoutbox will be retiring soon. It’s tired of working, and can’t wait to relax. You can still send a message to the channel owner, though!

Channels are a simple, beautiful way to showcase and watch videos. Browse more Channels.