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The Agora Fellowships

An opportunity for students to take part in a program where ideas and themes from the greatest books ever written will be discussed as part of a regular forum. Discussions about society, politics, economics, psychology, and culture will be led by Dr. George Bragues, Assistant Vice-Provost of UofGH and Dr. Matthew LaGrone, Assistant Program Head of Electives.

Accepted students are recognized as Agora Fellows.

Schedule

Fellows meet 8 times during the fall 2020 semester. Each meeting is approximately 2 hours.

Topics

'Technology and the Human' is the theme of the discussions.

Questions explored include:

  • How has technology impacted the human condition?
  • What are the benefits and costs of technological progress to humanity?
  • How might technologies like robotics and artificial intelligence affect what it means to be human?
  • How has technological advancement been understood by philosophers and novelists?
  • Is technology leading us towards utopia or dystopia?
  • Should we embrace, regulate, or stop technological progress? 

Readings for discussion

  • Phaedrus, by Plato
  • The New Atlantis, by Francis Bacon
  • Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
  • Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
  • The Technological Society, by Jacques Ellul (excerpts)
  • The Singularity is Near, by Ray Kurzweil (excerpts)

Field trip

Agora Fellows also participate in a field trip (location TBD), led by Dr. George Bragues and Dr. Matthew LaGrone. This provides an opportunity to gain a more practical understanding of the topics discussed at the meetings.

Benefits

Though no course credit is granted for participating in the discussion group, students chosen to become Agora Fellows will benefit from:

  • A distinctive title and accomplishment for your resume and co-curricular record
  • Free copies of the books under discussion
  • An all-expenses (flight + accommodations) paid field trip
  • A deepened understanding of the human project

Availability & Eligibility

There are up to 8 Agora fellowships available for fall 2020.

All University of Guelph-Humber students are eligible to apply. 

We will be looking to form a group of students with a diversity of life experiences and perspectives, willing to engage in respectful conversation and debate.

Application Form

Apply Now!

Deadline to apply is Thursday, April 9, 2020.

For inquiries, please email assistvp@guelphhumber.ca