Theses

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  • Wireless Body Area Networks Based on Compressed Sensing Theory
    Wireless Body Area Networks Based on Compressed Sensing Theory
    In this research, the effective sampling method known as Compressed Sensing (CS) theory is applied to Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs) to provide low power and low sampling-rate wireless healthcare systems and intelligent emergency care management systems. The fundamental contribution of this work can be divided into three areas. 1) We propose two new algorithms in the sensing, measurement, and processing area to compress biomedical data. 2) In the communication area, one new channel model based on CS theory is defined to transmit compressed data to the receiver side. 3) In the receiver side or reconstruction area, two new algorithms for recovering the original biomedical data are presented to recover the original data. Our results will be divided into three areas. 1) We employ the proposed algorithms to WBANs with a single biomedical signal (i.e. Electroencephalography [ECG] signals as a sample signal). In this area, the simulation results illustrate an increment of 10% improved for sensitivity in receiving compressed ECG signals. The simulation results also illustrate a 25% reduction of Percentage Root-mean-square Difference (PRD) for ECG signals on the receiver side. In addition, they confirm the ability of CS to maximize the prediction level for received the ECG signal at either Gate Ways (GWs) or Access Points (APs). 2) We illustrate that the proposed algorithms can be employed in WBANs with multiple biomedical signals to enhance current health care systems into low-power wireless healthcare systems. In this area, the simulation results confirm that for a particular WBAN, including N biomedical signals, the sampling-rate can be reduced by 25-35% and power consumption by 35-40%, without sacrificing the network’s performance. 3) Here improvements for wireless channel feature between BWSs and either GWs or APs are shown. In this area, the results demonstrate that CS is able to maximize signal amplitude to 25-30% at the receiver as well as distance between transmitter and receiver BWS to 30%. Moreover, these results confirm that path loss can be reduced to 25%.
    Without Words You Spoke: Queer Representing, Early Photography and Feeling
    Without Words You Spoke: Queer Representing, Early Photography and Feeling
    By examining historical queerness through the lens of photography, this dissertation examines how the past contributes valuable knowledge about where we have been and where we are going. The history of queer representation is laden with violence, erasure and shame, as well as survival and persistence. I approach this legacy by bringing together three principal topics that I argue are closely related: queer photographic practices, the politics of the archive, and affect theory. Through the analysis of social conditions that formed discourses of homosexuality and industrialism’s development of photography in the late nineteenth century, the tension between oppressive laws and social change comes clear: it reveals a cultural crisis of taxonomy and representation in queer visual history. The slippages between cultural economy and representation are exemplified in nineteenth century visual culture as political economy was increasingly entwined with the individual and the state. Out of this matrix comes the advent of photography. Inexpensive and accessible mechanical reproduction made it possible for the apparatus of photography to be both complicit in the categorization and repression of homosexuality, as well as a site of subversion of the status quo. Conventions in portraiture photography inscribed the construction of normativity through ‘the cult of the empire,’ yet queer subjectivities challenged these standards. A number of specific case studies involving women photographers and photographic subjects – such as Mabel Hampton, Bonnie and Semoura Clark, Alice Austen, and found photographs from my personal collection illustrate a symbolic defiance to hegemonic structures. By investigating archival material with a specific focus on queer history and photography, the case studies illustrate how our affective lives are saturated with political meaning. Photography wields unusual power when examining the relationship between affect and feeling. The affect of photography derives from its insistence on the past. Yet, photography produces a here and now that can resist strictures of heteronormativity and patriarchy through politicized feelings. The approach to queer historization is firmly rooted in notions of social justice imperatives and anti-oppressive political strategies that include racism, gender inequality and classism. Queer archives evoke cultural persistence and knowledge through the affective context of remembering.
    Witnessing The Genetic Self: How Non-Specialists Use Reveal Videos To Approach Genetics And Race Through Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Ancestry Testing
    Witnessing The Genetic Self: How Non-Specialists Use Reveal Videos To Approach Genetics And Race Through Direct-To-Consumer Genetic Ancestry Testing
    This paper investigates the interpretation and expression at work when those without a higher education in genetics take a direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic ancestry test (i.e. AncestryDNA) and then communicate this experience through online video on YouTube, most commonly through the Reveal genre of videos. Through non-random quota sampling a diverse corpus for analysis was created and then analyzed through the lenses of critical race theory, intersectionality, and María Lugones’s concepts of transparency and thickness, with focusing guidance from Gubium and Holstein’s narrative components to uncover how the test-takers approached genetics and race. The variations in how individuals approach their DTC genetic ancestry test results and communicate them through the videos, touching on topics such as race, family, self-identity, and stories, were discovered to work well alongside Roth and Ivemark’s recently presented genetic options theory.
    Women as sponsors : gendering Canadian family class immigration policy
    Women as sponsors : gendering Canadian family class immigration policy
    Canada's family class immigration policy has been studied as a gendered policy that has differential and harmful effects on women sponsored by their male spouses for immigration to Canada (Côté et al., 2001; National Association for Women and the Law, 1999; Thobani, 2000). As women are commonly seen as migrating for marriage and men for work (Sweetman, 1998), there has been little research done on the experiences of women who sponsor male spouses for immigration to Canada.This study explores the experiences of sponsoring women, mainly how their economic and family situations are affected by immigration policy and process. Using multiple forms of data, particularly judicial cases and interviews with sponsoring women, the study extracts themes related to immigration policy, immigration process, neo-liberalism, and the Sponsorship Agreement. It concludes that immigration policy and process create barriers to the family reunification of sponsoring women and their partners, increase the economic marginalization of women, and re-victimize women who have been abused by sponsored partners by holding them responsible for the Sponsorship Agreement.
    Women in the Margins: Media Representations of Women's Labour in the Canadian Press, 1935-1945
    Women in the Margins: Media Representations of Women's Labour in the Canadian Press, 1935-1945
    During the Second World War, women’s participation in Canada’s ‘total war’ effort meant increased domestic responsibilities, volunteering, enlisting in the armed forces, and joining the civilian workforce. Women’s labour force participation more than doubled throughout the war, with more women working alongside and in place of men than ever before. This created a situation that could challenge the traditional sexual division of labour, and so women’s labour became a subject for discussion in the public sphere.Through a comparative content analysis of the commercial and alternative (labour) press, this study examines representations of women’s labour in wartime in the context of women’s mobilization into the war effort through to subsequent demobilization near war’s end. It first considers the theoretical and methodological issues involved in the historical study of news media and women and then offers original empirical research to demonstrate that when women’s labour did emerge as a subject in the Canadian press, gender, not labour, was prioritized in the news. This was symbolically and systematically leveraged both within and across the commercial and alternative press, which reinforces stereotypical values about women and their labour and upheld the patriarchal status quo. In the end, while there were surface-level changes to the nature of women’s paid labour during the war, the structures of female subordination and exploitation remained unchallenged despite women’s massive mobilization into the workforce.By setting media representations against the wartime realities of women’s labour told through archival records and secondary literature, this dissertation argues that news media generally presented a ‘history’ of women’s labour that did not reflect the lived reality or the political economic and social significance of women’s labouring lives. This not only coloured how women’s labour was represented in the news, but it can also shape the history that scholars construct from the newspaper. In contributing to feminist media and media history scholarship, this dissertation offers empirical evidence that challenges dominant ways of thinking about women’s history in terms of the domestic sphere and furthers an understanding of women’s wage labour as a provocation to such historical public-private divisions. This may, in turn, inspire histories that more fully and equitably capture women’s experiences.
    Women undercover: exploring the intersectional identities of Muslim women through modest fashion
    Women undercover: exploring the intersectional identities of Muslim women through modest fashion
    Significant discrimination is directed toward Muslim women who dress modestly. Despite this Muslims will spend an estimated US$75 billion on modest fashion by 2020, a 70% increase since 2015. Past research in modest fashion has focused on influencers, the industry, or on veiling. Muslim women’s everyday dress practices and their lived experiences have not been studied. Through an intersectional framework, this research uses wardrobe interviews with sixteen Muslim women and digital storytelling with four of them to explore how they embody their identity through modest fashion, how intersectionality impacts their clothing choices, and what contexts influence their sartorial decisions. Three themes emerged: what influences their style; how they shop and style outfits; and what consequences are faced. My research found that by prioritizing modesty as a sartorial practice, these women are diverting the Western gaze, navigating away from superficial and oppressive Western beauty ideals, and challenging narrow Islamophobic stereotypes. Keywords: modesty, female modesty, sartorial agency, dressed bodies, fashion, hijab, Muslim, Islamophobia, intersectionality, fashion diversity, Western gaze, Orientalism
    Working in Rexdale: creating a long-term vision for the Rexdale employment area
    Working in Rexdale: creating a long-term vision for the Rexdale employment area
    While the City of Toronto recognizes the importance of retaining employment lands, it is becoming evident that long-term visions are needed to fully conceptualize the possibilities and realities of these aging, eclectic manufacturing hubs found in the inner suburbs. The purpose of this research is to identify the conditions, constraints and opportunities of the Rexdale Employment Area and develop the groundwork for a Secondary Plan. The first phase of this research project involves conducting a literature review of suburban industry and collecting historical information on Rexdale's employment lands. This is followed by a provincial and municipal policy review for employment lands and how these impact the longevity of the Rexdale Employment Area. A case study analysis of industrial districts in Chicago and Vancouver helps identify possible best practices to implement in Rexdale. Finally, interviews with planners, local employees, industrial associations and com munity organizations were used to provide perspectives absent from existing literature. A site study of the vacant land at 555 Rexdale Boulevard is used as a way to conceptualize the conditions and opportunities of the Rexdale Employment Area.
    Working model of the child interview : a cross-cultural examination of attachment representations
    Working model of the child interview : a cross-cultural examination of attachment representations
    This study examined ethno-cultural influences on attachment representations by using a Grounded Theory analysis of the Working Model of the Child Interview (WMCI). Six participant interviews were transcribed and coded. Four main themes related to caregivers and their children emerged from this qualitative analysis: emotion regulation, stress response, caregiver roles and personality/relationship descriptors. Results indicated that there are both universal and ethno-cultural variations related to different components of attachment representations. Attachment story telling, caregiver language and parenting styles reflected variations in cultural values and beliefs of independent and interdependent cultures. Emotion regulation, stress response and caregiver roles were more reflective of universal attachment. Recommendations for further inquiry into the ethno-cultural influences on attachment representations are discussed. Clinical implications suggest that ethno-cultural context must be acknowledged when interpreting WMCI interviews with non-dominant interviewee backgrounds. As well, evidence is provided to support developing a culturally sensitive system for interpreting WMCI interviews.
    Working the second shift, settling in Canada and other struggles; narratives of working African-immigrant mothers in Toronto.
    Working the second shift, settling in Canada and other struggles; narratives of working African-immigrant mothers in Toronto.
    This research study explores the experiences of working African immigrant mothers in accessing formal childcare services in Toronto. I start the study with an over view of the literature on the topics of access to childcare service and women’s labour force participation. I then review social reproduction and black feminist theories; the theoretical framework for my research. I also highlight the current state of childcare in Canada and how this affects African immigrant mothers who work. The study includes qualitative in-depth interviews with four such mothers who talk about their challenges and experiences in balancing work and family responsibilities in Toronto. The study found that the mothers are dissatisfied with several aspects of the childcare services they use or have used in the past. The mothers also face many struggles owing to patriarchal gender norms in their households and loss of extended family supports after immigration.
    Worlds apart: Marx, Marcuse and  creative engagement
    Worlds apart: Marx, Marcuse and creative engagement
    Marx’s early account of socialism as the simultaneous liberation of mankind and nature holds creativity to be mankind’s defining and trans-historical characteristic and the locus of human freedom. Yet, as I argue, Marx’s creativity is predicated upon subject-object relations of domination that engender a pathological relationship between humans and nature, thereby militating against true freedom. This paper will explore Marcuse’s attempt to rehabilitate Marx’s account and will find that Marcuse fails to resolve the crucial tension between subject and object, while his model of freedom contains the possibility for an escalation in the very violations of nature that his account seeks to overcome. Finally, I argue that creative processes and creative engagement suggest a way to resolve the tension in Marx’s account of human nature, while offering us a vantage point from which to critique and subvert the brutality of our own historical moment.
    Worst-case & average-case Efficiency trade-offs for search problems
    Worst-case & average-case Efficiency trade-offs for search problems
    Evacuation problems fall under the vast area of search theory and operations research. Problems of evacuation of two robots on a unit disc have been studied for an efficient evacuation time. Work done so far has focused on improving the ’worst-case’ evacuation time with deterministic algorithms. We study the ’average-case’ evacuation time (randomized algorithms) while considering the efficiency trade-off between worst-case and average-case costs. Our other contribution is to analyze average-case and worst-case costs for the cowpath problem (another search problem) which helped us to set a parallel method for the evacuation problem.
    Would You Lie For Me? : Alibi Corroboration Between Strangers And Non-Strangers
    Would You Lie For Me? : Alibi Corroboration Between Strangers And Non-Strangers
    To test the assumption that individuals who share a personal relationship are more likely to corroborate one another's false alibi than are strangers, 81 undergraduate students were provided the opportunity to either corroborate or refute a confederate's alibi for a suspected theft. In a 'friendship' condition, feelings of affiliation between the participant and the confederate were experimentally induced by increasing the perceived similarity between the pair, and by having the pair interact during a collaborative task. Later during the experimental session the confederate became a suspect for a mock crime and provided a false alibi that she was with the participant during the entire session. Contrary to what we hypothesized, participants in the 'stranger' condition were as likely to corroborate the false alibi as those who underwent friendship-enhancing activities. When the confederate acted in a highly suspicious manner, however, she was much less likely to have her false alibi corroborated by participant than when the confederate's behaviour was less suspicious. The results put into question our assumptions of what makes a credible witness and emphasizes the need for further empirical research on the behaviour of alibi corroboration.