Posts By: Jason Sullivan

Jason Sullivan

Even erudite flies get smashed now and then for sounding too ‘school smart’. As one of many AU students not immersed in an academic social sphere, Jason’s ‘Fly on the Wall’ column seeks to aid and abet the success of others in his cohort. We won’t always be understood when we speak of what we are learning in school but we can rest assured that our education still has value.

His lighthearted approach to sociological philosophy stems from conducting field research at bush parties and working his day job reforesting the mountains of BC. Born in the city of Vancouver and raised on a farm in the Fraser Valley and an orchard in the Okanagan, he attained a diploma in Horticulture in the Creston Valley and then returned to school as a Sociology major. Today’s he’s an AU Master’s of Integrated Studies student who spends his spare time enjoying nature walks, snorkeling and reading whatever philosophical and sociological tracts capture his fancy.

Jason is fascinated with the micro-sociological thoughts and interactions that frame and demarcate our experience of daily life as well as the philosophical realm considering essential questions about what it is to be a human. It’s dense brush but Jason seeks answers where murkiness holds sway.

A Few Theoretical Influences: Louis Althusser, Isaac Asimov, Jean Baudrillard, Simone de Beauvoir, Aime Cesaire, Carol Clover, John Cummings, Kurt Cobain, Jacques Derrida, Emile Durkheim, Michel Foucault, Erving Goffman, Antonio Gramsci, Martin Heidegger, Thomas Hobbes, Agnes Martin, Karl Marx, Georg Simmel, Max Weber

Fly on the Wall—New Year’s Resolutions? No Body Needs ‘em!

Shadows lurk like clouds across the moon as we recollect the recent memories of New Year’s festivities.  Sooner or later, amidst the frolicking and laughter, the ominous questions arose, “Have you made any resolutions?”  It was as though Champagne or Canada Dry bubbles froze in mid-ascent as gaiety met psycho-social inquisition. Queries regarding New Years’… Read more »

Fly on the Wall–New Mediums, New Methods, Part II

Last week the Fly on the Wall made the case for taking to art such as painting or drawing to expand our capacities for learning, to be able to look at your studies from a new vantage point that might bring easier understanding.  This week, we explore another method. Besides expressing ourselves visually through painting… Read more »

The Fly on the Wall—Christmas Bonus!

December 25th brings the culmination of the Holiday season: the annual gift exchange.  All the hard work of shopping and planning climaxes with this big moment; like a final exam we have expectations we hope to fulfil and anxieties we must allay.  The idea, of course, is: You will get a sentimental feeling when you… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—New Mediums, New Methods

Deep in Amazonian South America live capybara: boxy beavers who intermittently refresh themselves by wallowing in mud.  It nourishes and hydrates their skin and probably feels great.  Like AU students, capybara life is about perpetual progress.  This stands in notable contrast to their cousins the prairie gophers, who take the easy way out of winter… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—Happy Holidays from Plato

Christmas in July might have been the brainchild of a mind trapped in the December holiday rush.  Some rugged calendar pioneer sensed the invisible energy of fellow shoppers, buzzing thick like mountain electrical lines receiving snowflake shocks during a winter blizzard, and thought, why me, why now!  Or maybe they gazed upon row upon row… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—We Are What We Believe

In Part 1, phallic symbols ran rife through our consumer goods and even the food we eat; no reasonable criticism like the extinction of fish species of global warming could rattle our cultural need to find a stable identity in what we eat and buy. So, “ok, hold on just a hot minute” you might… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—Waiter, there’s a Phallus in my Soup

Comfort food: succulent hugs in morsel mouthfuls.  It’s soulful re-invigoration at a delightful and intangible level.  Sinfully delicious or piously nutritious, our hard-studying taste buds deserve the best.  We know what we like and we don’t need to ask why.  But what if your favourite Canadian dish threatened extinction for a species in the wild?… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—A Simmel Plan

At Cirque de Soleil last week a unique opportunity presented itself: during intermission I gazed upward at a sea of audience faces entranced and captivated by the show and then over at the stage performers enraptured by the craft of their art.  In this moment I attained a perfect middle between subject and object. It… Read more »

Fly on the Wall—November 11, 2018

Behind ideas and actions lie belief systems; in times of war, philosophies have mortal consequences.  Veterans spent so much of their life’s vigour and vim because they believed in ideals of duty, democracy, nation, and honour; in short, everything that makes our society free.  Our liberty to study and flourish today exists because of these… Read more »