Writing

Published Books

2020. Documentary Film Festivals Vol 1: Methods, History, Politics,co-edited with Aida Vallejo (Palgrave Macmillan)

This book provides the first comprehensive overview of the global landscape of documentary film festivals. Contributors from across the globe offer in-depth analysis of both internationally renowned and more alternative festivals.


2020.Documentary Film Festivals Vol 2: Changes, Challenges, Professional Perspectives, co-edited with Aida Vallejo (Palgrave Macmillan)

This book provides the first comprehensive overview of the global landscape of documentary film festivals, looking at its contemporary and future challenges. Contributors from across the globe reflect on how documentary has positioned itself within both internationally renowned and more alternative festivals


2014. Screening Truth to Power: A Reader on Documentary Activism (Cinema Politica), Co-edited with Svetla Turnin

A reflection on ten years of activities of the documentary screening non-profit Cinema Politica, this collection brings together a diversity of essays, interviews, impressions and specially curated ‘favourite docs’ lists – with an eye to connecting “documentary” to “activism.”


2010. Challenge for Change: Activist Documentary at the National Film Board of Canada (McGill-Queen’s University Press), Co-edited with Thomas Waugh and Michael Brendan Baker

The first comprehensive collection of historical and new essays and interviews, as well as precious archival materials that give shape to one of the world’s most fascinating and polarizing documentary experiments.

Forthcoming Books

Forthcoming (Under review). Buying In to Doing Good: Documentary Politics and Curatorial Ethics at the Hot Docs Film Festival (McGill-Queen’s University Press)

A monograph (based on my PhD work) that looks at the “pathologies” stemming from Multicultural liberalism, neoliberal capitalism and settler colonialism that manifest at film festivals.


Forthcoming (Under review). Insiders/Outsiders: The Cultural Politics and Ethics of Indigenous Representation and Participation in Canada’s Media Arts, co-edited with Dana Claxton (Wilfrid Laurier University Press)


Forthcoming (Research stage).Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance: A Global Reading (Publisher TBD)

Academic Chapters, Articles & Interviews

• 2020 “Frames of Counterpower: The Cultural Politics of Programming” in Contemporary Radical Film Culture: Networks, Organisations and Activists, Jack Newsinger, Michael Wayne and Steve Presence (eds.), London: Routledge.

A chapter that looks at film programming as a legitimate and effective way to intervene in power relations, offering opportunities for the fomentation of counterpower.


• [forthcoming] “Slow Down, You Move to Fast: Accelerated Documentary Culture at the Hot Docs Film Festival” in Reclaiming Popular Documentary, Christie Milliken and Steve Anderson (eds.), Bloomington: Indiana University Press.


• 2020 “The Program is Political: Documentary, Festivals and the Politics of Programming” in InsUrgent Media from the Front: A Global Media Activism Reader, Stephen Charbonneau and Christopher Robe (eds.), Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

A chapter that discusses the ways in which documentary may be considered alternative or radical media, with a focus on film festivals and the politics of programming.


• 2020 “Letting it Seep In: Ojibwe Filmmaking Duo Adam and Zack Khalil Discuss Political Filmmaking as Covert Ops” in InsUrgent Media from the Front: A Global Media Activism Reader, Stephen Charbonneau and Christopher Robe (eds.), Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

An interview with turbo-talented, politically provocative Ojibwe filmmaker-brothers Adam and Zack Khalil.


2020. “Hot Zones: The Cultural Politics of Documentary Through a Film Festival Lens” in Documentary Film Festivals: History, Politics, Challenges, Aida Vallejo and Ezra Winton (eds.), London: Palgrave Macmillan.

This chapter traces the history of the Hot Docs film festival from local grassroots upstart to commercially successful global player, with an emphasis on cultural politics.


2019. “Documentary Media: Towards a Definition.” In The SAGE International Encyclopedia of Mass Media and Society, Debra L. Merskin, ed. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications.

A 5,000 word attempt at defining documentary, jumping off from “the creative treatment of actuality” to a comprehensive, contemporary evaluation of fiction’s twice-removed cousin.


2017. “The Revolution Will Not be Festivalized: Documentary Film Festivals and Activism” in Activist Film Festivals: Towards a Political Subject, Co-authored with Svetla Turnin, Sonia Tascón and Tyson Wils (eds.), Bristols and Chicago: Intellect. [enter discount code ACTIVIST40 for 40% off this book]

In this chapter we position political and radical activism with film festival culture and discover a collision of forces that signal both trouble possibility.


2015. “Interview with Ezra Winton, Director of Programming at Cinema Politica,” Robbins, Papagena and Viviane Saglier, Special Dossier on Documentary Festivals, as part of Special Issue, Other Networks: Expanding Filim Festival Perspectives, Synoptique, Vol. 3, No. 2, Fall.


2013. “Challenges for Change: Innovations at the National Film Board of Canada,” Co-authored with Thomas Waugh, In The Documentary Film Book, Palgrave/British Film Institute.

A chapter that deems to provide a concise analysis of the NFB’s history, directions, operations, politics and cultural output.


2012; 2009. “Canadian Cultural Policy in the Age of Media Abundance: Old Challenges, New Technologies,” Co-authored with Ira Wagman, In Mediascapes: New Patterns in Canadian Communications, 3rd and 4th editions, Nelson Education.

The title of this chapter says it all.


2010. “If a Revolution Is Screened and No One Is There to See It, Does It Make a Sound? Grassroots Distribution from Challenge for Change to Cinema Politica,” Co-authored with Jason Garrison, In Challenge for Change: Activist Documentary at the National Film Board of Canada, Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press.

A chapter that looks at the creation of counterpublics through grassroots screenings that deploy NFB titles, using Michael Kanentakeron Mitchell’s classic You Are On Indian Land as a case study.

PhD Dissertation & MA Thesis

2013. Good for the Heart and Soul, Good for Business: The Cultural Politics of Documentary at the Hot Docs Film Festival, PhD Dissertation, Carleton University (Communication Studies).

My PhD dissertation takes a close look at the complex and influential documentary cultural institution known as Hot Docs – the world’s second largest international documentary film festival (after IDFA in Amsterdam). My thesis was successfully defended on December 18th, 2013 and the full PDF can be directly downloaded here.


2007. The Spaces Between: Documentary Distribution and Exhibition as Counterpublics, MA Thesis, Concordia University (Media Studies).

Like most MA theses, it’s rough around the edges. Despite that fact, I’m making it available to anyone interested enough to read through it. You can download the 256 page PDF here.

Non-academic Writing

The Nation Magazine
• “The imagineNATIVE festival at 20,” The Nation, November 8, 2019.
• “Seven must-see Indigenous-made films of 2019,” The Nation, December 21, 2019

POV Magazine
• “Unsettling the Nation*: A Short History of Documentary Dissent in Canada,” POV Magazine, Issue 104, Spring, 2017.
• “Review: Bee Nation,” POV Magazine, 2017, (online).
• “A Structured Inequity: Further Reflections following Hot Docs 2017 on Indigenous Representation in Canada’s Documentary Industry,” POV Magazine, 2017 (online).
• “The Slow Burn: Committed Canadian Documentaries at Hot Docs 2017,” POV Magazine, 2017 (online).
• “Upping the Anti: Documentary, Capitalism and Liberal Consensus in an Age of Austerity,” POV Magazine, Issue 92, Winter 2013.
• “New Nordic Documentary Cinema: Making Identity Visible,” POV Magazine, Issue 83, Fall 2011.
• “A Film Festival Grows Up: Hot Docs Forges a Community while Celebrating, Promoting and Supporting a Marginalized Cinematic Culture”, POV Magazine, Issue 82, Summer 2011.
• “Beyond the Textbook: Documentaries as Tools for Teaching,” POV Magazine, Issue 77, Spring 2010.
• “Multiculturalism, Radical Outcasts and Superheroes: The Education/Documentary Space of Discover,” POV Magazine, Issue 80, Winter 2010.
• “A Documentary Decade” (PDF),” POV Magazine, Issue 66, Winter 2007.
• “CinemaNet Europe: A Digital Doc Armada”,” POV Magazine, Issue 64, Winter 2006.

Art Threat
• “ Curating the North: Documentary Screening Ethics and Inuit Representation in (Festival) Cinema – An Interview with Altethea Arnaquq-Baril,” December 17, 2015.