Lyn Charland

Lyn Charland is a doctoral candidate, PhD in Humanities, Concordia, under the supervision of Frances M. Shaver, Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Dr. Louis Patrick Leroux, Associate Professor in the Department of English and Département d'études françaises, as well as Laurent Lapierre, Chaire de leadership Pierre-Péladeau at HEC-Montréal.

Charland’s interest in Cirque du Soleil’s touring show environments stems from having previously been employed with the organization. With a background in the field of Human Resources, she chose to pursue a Bachelors of Arts degree in Sociology with the intent of undertaking research within these nomadic communities. Recipient of The Rytsa Tobias Memorial Medal 2011, her BA honours thesis focused on issues of turnover and retention, social cohesion and stages of touring life experienced by community members. This research endeavor earned her the first prize for an oral presentation in the social sciences at Concordia during Undergraduate Research Day in 2010. She is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Sociology at McGill University through a SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship. Her current research focuses on the meaning of ‘family’ for community members and the link to the conventional ‘family’, given that such communities are, in many respects, microcosms of the larger transnational nature of our contemporary world.

Charland’s research interests pertain to social transformations of the modern world, especially as concerns social interactions amongst highly diverse ethno-cultural groups brought together through globalization practices; in particular, how colleagues from different backgrounds interact at work and play.  This includes the interaction between the cultural, the social and personal, how individuals with a wide range of belief systems acculturate/assimilate through intimacies, sexualities and identities in these entertainment milieus.

cirque circus group


Members of the group are regular collaborators engaged in an ongoing conversation. They regularly attend Working Group meetings in Montreal or elsewhere and are expected to give at least one talk a year or to act as respondents to colleagues' papers.


Graduate Students

Regular participants, working with Working Group members or working on circus-related scholarly topics:

  • Dr. Tracy Zhang
    post-doctoral fellow, Concordia University; supervisor Norma Rantisi
  • Joanna Donehower
    doctoral candidate, PhD in Humanities, Concordia; supervisor: Louis Patrick Leroux
  • Lyn Charland
    doctoral candidate, PhD in Humanities, Concordia; supervisor: Louis Patrick Leroux
  • Sue Proctor
    MA in SIP, Concordia; supervisor: Louis Patrick Leroux
  • Johanna Tzountouris
    MA, Laval University
  • Katie Lavers
    PhD Candidate through WAAPA (Edith Cowan University, Australia)


back to top