Meet the Massey Lectures App

Hello world.

Uncover the full legacy and history of the Massey Lectures Series, from 1961 to today. Learn more about selected Massey authors, their lives, achievements, and beliefs. Explore the complex web of themes within the Massey universe, and hear unique thoughts and insights from the lecturers themselves. And then contribute to the conversation yourself.


Download the Free Massey Lectures App


 “The Massey Lectures series is so unique and special. The Massey Lectures iPad app further engages with the audience and livens up the conversation, supporting the original format beyond what it was capable of before.”

— Renowned author Lawrence Hill, 2013 Massey Lecturer

For more than 50 years, the annual Massey Lecture series, broadcast on CBC Radio’s IDEAS, has brought contemporary thinkers with unique perspectives and experiences to a national and international audience. Notable Massey Lecturers include Northrop Frye, Noam Chomsky, Margaret Atwood, Doris Lessing, Stephen Lewis, Thomas King, Margaret Somerville, and Wade Davis to name but a few.

During the week of the rebroadcast of Lawrence Hill’s Massey Lectures, Blood, on CBC Radio’s IDEAS, House of Anansi in co-operation with the CBC and Massey College, and with the support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation, unveils its first iPad app. Now available for free in the iTunes App Store, the Massey Lectures iPad app lets readers explore some of the most complex and thought-provoking topics of our age, and reveals the depth and breadth of Canada’s preeminent public lectures series in a totally new way. The app includes nearly 200 hours of text, audio lectures, interviews, talks, and exclusive footage.

Massey Sets

For the first time, the audio and text of selected lectures are brought together in one specially priced package available for purchase within the app. Each selected Massey Lectures e-book is illuminated with vibrant images and videos and includes the five-hour audio lectures. At launch, the app adds nearly 40 pieces of additional video and audio content. Also available for the first time are curated bundles of books and lectures that are divided by connected ideas across lectures called “themes,” such as “Constructing and Deconstructing Identity” and “Rationalizing the Truth.”

Watch the app in action


About the Massey Lectures Series


The Massey Lectures Series was created in honour of the Right Honourable Vincent Massey, former Governor General of Canada, and was inaugurated in 1961 to provide a forum on radio where major contemporary thinkers could address the important issues of the day. Each year a noted scholar or public figure is invited to give a series of topical lectures. The Massey Lectures are co-sponsored by CBC Radio, House of Anansi Press, and Massey College in the University of Toronto. For more information, go to


The Massey App is created by House of Anansi in co-operation with the CBC and Massey College, and with the support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation. The Massey Lectures iPad App was concepted, designed and developed by Critical Mass, a global digital marketing agency.


Q&A with Frauke Scheunemann, author of Puppy Love

Frauke Scheunemann is the author of international bestseller Puppy Love, a romantic comedy about the misadventures of Hercules the dachshund. Frauke was kind of enough to answer a few questions for us — read on for more insight into the creation of this adorable book!

Frauke Scheunemann

Photo credit: Melanie Dreysse

Anansi: You were a lawyer before becoming a full-time writer. Why did you decide to transition into a career in writing books?

Frauke: Actually, I’ve been writing for quite a while before that decision. Being a student at law school, I started working for different newspapers. I did reviews on theatre plays or art exhibitions, articles about the local dog breeder’s club and so on. Surprisingly, I liked it very much. So when I got my bar exam, I started a training at North German Broadcasting and worked as a full time journalist. One day my sister Wiebke, who had already been very successful as a writer, was asked for a novel written as the diary of two young girls. She asked me if I’d like to be her co-author, so we could write it out of two different perspectives. I think the book was a major flop, but it was so much fun, that we decided to go on with another book. So Anne Hertz was born, the pen name of my sister and I. Our first novel as Anne Hertz, Fortune Cookies, was a big success right from the start. I never thought of law again. :-)

A: Where did you find your inspiration for Puppy Love?

F: Puppy Love is sort of a fairytale. What if some creature came from outer space and watched how humans fall in love and why? What attracts men to women and vice versa? I had been thinking about this a lot when a close friend told me she broke up with a guy because he was too nice. Too nice? Doesn’t this sound crazy? At least if you’re from outer space? I decided to write a book about this and soon discovered that I didn’t like the idea of some alien watching us, but the idea of a little puppy, since I´m a biiig dog lover. So this is where Hercules stepped in.

A: Puppy Love is the first book in a series of Hercules books that are enormously successfully in Germany. Why do you think people have connected with the story so much?

F: Honestly, I don’t really know but I figure the books work like a mirror. You can see yourself in them and how ridiculous your own human behaviour is sometimes.

A: Do you ever use your dog, Elmo, as a model for dogs’ traits and characteristics in your books?

F: The way Elmo snuggles up with me on the sofa is definitely Hercules. These big brown eyes — it’s hard to say no. However, Elmo is a Havanese dog which means he is not as stubborn and naughty as Hercules can get as a dachshund. And tell you the truth: I’m very glad about that. I have four naughty children, at least my dog should behave . . .

A. Have you recePuppy Loveived any funny or interesting reactions from dog or cat owners who have read your books?

F: The most interesting reaction is that a lot of pet owners tell me they wonder if their dog or cat has just the same thoughts as Hercules or Mr Beck. I got a lot of nice pictures of my readers’ cats and dogs — I like it very much!

A. So far in Canada, only the first book, Puppy Love, has been published. Can you give us a sneak peek into the rest of the series?

F: Yes, I would love to!

In part two, Caroline, Marc and his daughter Luisa move in together. But whereas Hercules is enthusiastic and expects a definite happy end of this fine love story, Mr. Beck tells him there’s no such thing as a happy end when it comes to humans. And he’s right — trouble is ahead, as Caroline’s mother-in-law is a nightmare, Luisa’s new classmates are mean and Marc’s ex-wife shows up. Thanks goodness, at least the dog and the cat keep cool . . . but when Hercules loses his heart to the beautiful, but three heads bigger Golden Retriever lady Cherie, things start to get rather turbulent.

In part three, Marc and Caroline are overjoyed: the child they have hoped for is on the way. Hercules and Luisa, who are now close friends, are not quite as excited as the parents-to-be. What changes are in store for them in the future?

Our thanks to Frauke for participating in this Q&A!

Pick up your copy of Puppy Love today!

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