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Graduate Program in Communication & Culture

Faculty Profiles

Janet Conway

University   Ryerson University
E-Mail Address
Phone Number   (416) 979-5000 ext. 6180
Office Location   JOR 711
Office Hours   TBA


B.A.History (Memorial); M.A. Political Science (York); M.A.Theology (St. Michael's College); Ph.D. Political Science (York)


Dr. Janet Conway has been a faculty member of the Department of Politics and School of Public Administration at Ryerson University since August 2002. Janet is also accredited in the Graduate Program in Communication and Culture. She regularly teaches POL 601 Contemporary Mass Movements and POL 501 Women, Power and Politics in Canadian and Global Perspective to upper level liberal studies student, and PPA 705 First Nations and Sustainable Development in the department's partnership program with the First Nations Technical Institute.

Before coming to Ryerson, Janet Conway was Program Director at the Social Planning Council of Metro Toronto. She is a long-time social justice activist and a founder of the Toronto-based Metro Network for Social Justice. Since coming to Ryerson, she has collaborated closely with Judy Rebick in her capacity as the Gindin Chair in Social Justice and Democracy in convening the Toronto Social Forum (

Professor Conway's area of research and specialization is contemporary social movements. She is the author of a recent book, Identity, Place, Knowledge: Social Movements Contesting Globalization (2004), and is the recipient of a three-year SSHRC Standard Research Grant for a project entitled "The World Social Forum: Towards a New Democratic Imaginary." This project has recently taken her to India, Brazil and Ecuador.

Research Interests

Contemporary social movements, citizenship and globalization

Selected Publications

2004 "Citizenship in a Time of Empire: The World Social Forum as a New Public Space," Beyond National Citizenship: A special issue of Citizenship Studies, ed. Janine Brodie, Vol.8, no.4, December 2004, 367-81.

2004 Identity, Place, Knowledge: Social Movements Contesting Globalization, Fernwood.

2004 "Place Matters: India's Challenge to Brazil at the World Social Forum." Antipode: A radical journal of geography. Jamie Peck & Jane Wills (eds.) vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 357-60.

2003 "Power of Social Forum is its global diffusion." Humanity and Society: Journal for the Association of Humanist Sociology. Vol. 26, no.3, August 2002, 254-56.

2003 "The movement, the empire and the paradox of power in diversity," Through the Lenses of the People, Toronto: People's Lenses Collective, pp. 254-55.

2003 "Civil resistance and the 'diversity of tactics' in the anti-globalization movement: Problems of violence, silence, and solidarity in activist politics," Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Vol.41, nos.2 &3, 505-30.

2003 "Producing knowledge and practicing democracy: Capacity-building in social movements." Humanity and Society: Journal for the Association of Humanist Sociology. Vol. 26, no.3, August 2002, 228-244.

2000 "Knowledge and the Impasse in Left Politics: Potentials and Problems in Social Movement Practice," Studies in Political Economy 62, Summer 2000, pp.43-70.



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Harold [Innis] taught us how to use the bias of culture and communication as an instrument of research. By directing attention to the bias, or distorting power of the dominant imagery and technology of any culture, he showed us how to understand cultures.
~ Marshall McLuhan