Edward Snowden

Axworthy Lecturer


This lecture took place on Tuesday, May 9 at 6:00 pm in Riddell Hall.


Former US intelligence officer Edward Snowden shared his insights on mass surveillance and citizenship in a public lecture held simultaneously via webcast at the University of Winnipeg, Brandon University and the University of Lethbridge on May 9, 2017.

Snowden began his talk by reacting to the firing of FBI director James Comey by President Donald Trump. Here is a portion of his lecture, for the record.



Portions of the Snowden lecture will be embedded on UWinnipeg’s website in the coming days.

Snowden's lecture was part of the Axworthy Distinguished Lectures series, which invites front-ranking researchers, social commentators and political leaders to the University of Winnipeg to deliver free lectures on social justice issues involving gender, religion and secularism, language, ethnicity and race, ecology, and economy.

The series coincides with Institutes delivered by the Centre for the Liberal Arts and Secular Society (CLASS)—a network of University of Winnipeg faculty members and students engaged in interdisciplinary research concerning secularism and secularization from perspectives across the liberal arts. The 2017 Institute is entitled The University and the Public Good.

Edward Snowden is a former intelligence officer who served the CIA, NSA, and DIA for nearly a decade as a subject matter expert on technology and cybersecurity. In 2013, he revealed that the NSA was seizing the private records of billions of individuals who had not been suspected of any wrongdoing, resulting in the most significant reforms to US surveillance policy since 1978.

He has received awards for courage, integrity, and public service, and was named the top global thinker of 2013 by Foreign Policy magazine. Today, he works on methods of enforcing human rights through the application and development of new technologies. He joined the board of Freedom of the Press Foundation in February 2014.

Edward Snowden joined the CLASS Spring Insitute for a conversation live via web-link about mass surveillance and the role of universities as a critical public space for engaging the ethics of mass surveillance. His presentation was part of the Axworthy Distinguished Lecture Series on Social Justice and the Public Good.

Special thanks to our partners on this webcast, Brandon University and the University of Lethbridge.

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