LinR lecturer Dr. Stephen Richer

Dr. Stephen Richer is a retired Professor Emeritus of Sociology and former Chair of the Sociology and Anthropology Department at Carleton University. He has published seven books and many articles, mostly on education and Canadian society.

After retirement, he took on several projects, including Education Director on an around-the-world cruise, teaching social research to Cree people on James Bay, leading sing-alongs for Alzheimer’s patients, and producing fundraising shows. He has been a folk/protest singer since he was eighteen and more recently led protest singing against the CANSEC arms show and at rallies against the commercial development of Lansdowne Park. For the past several years Professor Richer has been teaching a series of courses on the history of protest music.

Read what participants have said about Dr. Richer’s lecture series, “I Ain’t Marching Anymore: Songs of War and Peace”:

  • I gained insight into the different eras the series covered and learned much about things I hadn’t considered at the time they occurred. I learned not only about the series material but about myself as well. It was a very enjoyable experience and I hope to partake of another series in the future. Lecturer Richer was terrific!
  • Lecturer is a great and knowledgeable and talented individual who takes the time to listen and encourage his audience. A five star food for the mind rating.
  • This was an incredibly fun series, well presented, with knowledge, insight and humour.
  • I have taken all his previous series and am repeating this one for the second time as it was so much fun and informative.
  • A brilliant teacher! Well-structured and interesting material. Terrific series outline. Student participation is encouraged and facilitated. And the series was fun, to boot!
  • Academic material presented with a combination of videos, songs, stories-and humour. Dr. Richer was approachable and related well to his students. Very knowledgeable and passionate about his material.
  • Very entertaining as well as very interesting. The lecturer did a great job in putting the songs into their social context. (He was also a great folk singer!)

Read what participants have said they enjoyed most about Dr. Richer’s 2018 lecture series, “We Shall Overcome: The Civil Rights Movement Through Song”:

  • Dr. Richer was obviously very learned on the subject and most personable and open to discussions and others’ ideas. It covered a period of history that I was not very familiar with and motivated me to look more deeply into the subject. I really looked forward to attending each week. There was absolutely no pressure – to participate, to be quizzed – it was purely pleasurable learning.
  • This series was so interesting and timely! Loved every minute. Thank you!
  • The lecturer’s approach to the content suggesting how historically, racial and civil rights protests have been embedded and coded within cultural forms to obscure the message’s true meaning from dominate, non-oppressed groups. I very much appreciate the chronology linking all the events in time. It seems very appropriate to end with a discussion of the music and singing of Buffy St. Marie. Singing together in class, accompanied by the banjo, was icing on the cake.
  • LOVED, LOVED this series! I greatly appreciated the presentation of historical context and stories about the music. I loved the music.
  • Stephen is a great learning leader, knowledgeable, insightful, fun and funny and willing to learn from others himself.
  • Stephen’s combination of scholarly approach and singing the songs was excellent. He masterfully distilled the voluminous amount information available on this topic into a fascinating journey filled with interesting stories, anecdotes and little known facts. I enjoyed his explanations and theories about the origins and nature of protest songs – he raised many thought-provoking and controversial issues. Thank you so much!