• Society

    Making up for lost time

    The day before the first COVID-19 lockdown, I remember being blissfully unaware at a small concert in Toronto by R&B artist Gallant. I was singing my heart out while trying to keep that nagging voice in the back of my head from bothering me about my exams the next day. By the following morning, the first lockdown was announced. It was thought to last only two weeks, but since then it has proven to be much longer. At first, I struggled coping with a sense of loss for my daily life as a young person in their early 20s. Often, this is a very pressuring stage of life. I felt…

  • Creative

    I AM

    My body is made from the hundreds of other females before me, who managed to stand in a world so twisted. I am made of the arms that were sacrificed from harsh labor in the fields, arms that shielded above their heads from the abuse, arms that held tight to protect and love. I am made of their brown skin,  delicate and warm, drawing in the sun. I am made of their lips, that used to hesitate, silenced for speaking out their mind. Proud but bruised for standing for their sisters. Now I am those lips, I am those silent words from driven deep into their heart, small but loud…

  • Lifestyle

    The return to a slow life: explaining the cottagecore trend

    Anna Shishmanov loves to encompass the joys of being an imaginative kid again, exploring her backyard and local forest in search of mushrooms, flowers and new plants to study. Back at home, she continues to cherish each moment through handmade hobbies such as baking and knitting.  This aesthetic lifestyle was coined by Tumblr in 2018 as “cottagecore.” The emerging trend is best described as bucolic, relating to the simplicity of a slow and self-sufficient countryside life. It romanticizes overgrown plants, wildflower fields and loose vintage fabrics like gingham and floral print. It brings upon a feeling of coziness, in contrast to the loud and busy hustle culture of cities.   On…

  • Society

    The psychology behind nostalgia

    Nostalgia is a universal experience that happens to everyone throughout various points in their lives. Generally, nostalgia is a sentimental reflection of the past or a yearning for a previous time in someone’s life that holds meaningful memories. In a medical newsletter, Dr. Cahut writes that memory is inaccurate. Our memory can only hold generalized reconstructions of the past that we have fixated on. With nostalgia, we tend to keep only the good parts that often colour the past with a rosy hue despite negative experiences.   Brooke Lydbrooke is a retired teacher, writer and activist. When reflecting on her youth, Lydbrooke fondly remembers a time of great change and experimentation.…

  • Creative

    Olive

    There once was a small olive girl so shy When she spoke, there was a subtle sweet papaya honey in her voice. She used to laze under the shade of the forest that was her home, Made from colourful trees stuffed with yellow bananas, rouge mangos, pink rambutan And millions of blinking star fruit at night lighting up her universe in the dark. She was born in the August garden of orchids and jasmines, Decorating her hair so long it reached her hips With eyes so dark she attracted all the world’s lights to her And olive skin so tan from the sun  Working hard on the farms made of…

  • Society

    Growing up online: exploring identity and creativity in the 2000s

    Tina Giang reminisces about 2009, when she was still a child in her pyjamas exploring her imagination through Microsoft Paint, Neopets and updating her latest YouTube profile design. There was no pressure to conform to a number of likes or the fleeting eyes of a short attention span.  Giang, now an OCAD University student in illustration, said her experiences were positive on these art platforms. “Everything felt simpler, so there was less of a feeling that I had to make posts or look or act a certain way.” Mary Tran, a digital artist, was a teenager when she was active on Tumblr and was exposed to all forms of art…

  • Society

    Should cancel culture be #cancelled?

    In the past decade, the media has not been easy on popular influencers and celebrities. Old mistakes or tweets that would have gone unnoticed 10 years ago are now resurfacing as evidence to ‘cancel’ people from social media or their careers. Critics of cancel culture denote these call outs to mob mentality, evoked by the “overly sensitive” Generation Z and millennials. In terms of politics, some critics address cancel culture as a censorship tactic to silence political enemies rather than an approach for healthy debate. As part of the older Generation Z population, Ciarra Ramsaywack does not think current youth are to blame for being overly sensitive. She says that…

  • Society

    The return to “normal”

    Lockdown restrictions are easing, more Canadians are becoming fully vaccinated, non-essential services are reopening and gradually, people are meeting each other in person after being isolated since March 2020. For the first time in a while, lockdown measures are not being extended by another two weeks. There is finally a sense of hope.  Recent University of Toronto graduate Nievana Judisthir is excited to start her life again and is already making plans to transition into post-pandemic life. Her main goals are to attend Centennial College’s human resources program and to travel to the United States. “I’m excited to get my life back on track. I want to meet new people…

  • School

    The impact of virtual learning on marginalized students

    The side effects of moving in and out of lockdown has exposed a growing issue for marginalized youth in the Canadian education system. While most at risk in terms of health and well-being, these students had to quickly adapt to a transition to virtual classrooms and juggle challenges such as economic hardship, cultural pressures and finding access to technology. A study by Wilfred Laurier University found that students most affected by online classes and isolation are those who identify as racialized or Indigenous, newcomers or individuals from disabled populations.  These groups suffer from an achievement gap, in which there is a significant learning loss compared to students living in high-income…

  • Creative

    Growth

    We were told to stay down and keep to ourselves Planted in toxic soil Watered by poisonous words and bruised by jealous hands. We were told we could only grow here, Locked behind our glass homes Hoping that the world would appear as beautiful If we could pretend to see it But never touch it. But we are not the same, we are not less than or more We resist, we are opportunists. We don’t know where to go So we took our roots and left Pushing for flowers even on desert land We are wild and untamed. We will not be afraid to chase the sun in an awkward…