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Refuse: CanLit in Ruins Launch

CanLit—the commonly used short form for English Canadian Literature as a cultural formation and industry—has been at the heart of several recent public controversies. Why? Because CanLit is breaking open to reveal the accepted injustices at its heart. It is imperative that these public controversies and the issues that sparked them be subject to careful and thorough discussion and critique. Refuse: CanLit in Ruins provides a critical and historical context to help readers understand conversations happening about CanLit presently.

Join us for a cinq à sept to celebrate the launch of this important and powerful volume, co-edited by Hannah McGregor, Julie Rak, and Erin Wunker, at its Edmonton launch on Wednesday, January 16, 2019. From 5:00 – 7:00 PM, in the Student Lounge of the University of Alberta’s Old Arts Building, you’ll hear amazing work of refusal and hope from CJ Bogle, Marilyn Dumont, Nikki Reimer and Chelsea Vowel (among others), and have the chance to mingle and discuss Canadian literature over drinks and bites. Don’t miss it!

Wednesday, January 16, 2019
5:00 – 7:00 PM
Student Lounge
Old Arts Building
University of Alberta Campus

2019 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Dionne Brand

Don’t miss the 2019 CLC Kreisel Lecture to be delivered by Dionne Brand. Internationally acclaimed poet and novelist Dionne Brand, winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize and the Governor General’s Award, will give a lecture titled “An Autobiography of the Autobiography of Reading.” Brand will be introduced by bestselling author Lawrence Hill.

Brand’s talk takes up her reading of early and persistent narratives that mark and spectacularise Black being. She explores what it means to write back to, or against, dominant colonial, imperialist, and racist tropes, and how, finally, a Black poetics can be a remedy for narrative.

The CLC continues its commitment to maintaining the legacy of Henry Kreisel through its annual CLC Kreisel Lecture series. A forum for open, inclusive critical thinking and cultural engagement, the CLC Kreisel Lecture series is a tribute to Henry Kreisel himself. Past presenters in the series include Michael Crummey, Heather O’Neill, Lynn Coady, Tomson Highway, Esi Edugyan, Lawrence Hill, and Eden Robinson. Like the twelve previous CLC Kreisel Lectures, Brand’s talk will be published in the CLC Kreisel Lecture Series by the University of Alberta Press, in the same fashion as the CBC Massey Lecture Series. The lecture will be recorded and broadcast by CBC Radio One “Ideas.” Bestselling author Lawrence Hill will introduce Brand’s lecture.

Dionne Brand’s literary credentials are legion. Her 2010 book of poetry, Ossuaries, won the Griffin Poetry Prize, and her other accolades include the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Trillium Book Award and the Pat Lowther Memorial Award. Her novel In Another Place, Not Here was selected as a NYT Book Review Notable Book and a Best Book by the Globe and Mail; At the Full and Change of the Moon was selected a Best Book by the LA Times and What We All Long For won the Toronto Book Award. In 2006, Brand was awarded the Harbourfront Festival Prize for her contribution to the world of books and writing, and was Toronto’s Poet Laureate from 2009 to 2012. In 2017, she was named to the Order of Canada, and 2018 saw the publication of two new titles: Theory and The Blue Clerk. Brand is a Professor in the School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. She lives in Toronto.

A reception and book signing will follow. Books will be sold by Glass Bookshop.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019 | 7:30 PM
Timms Centre for the Arts
87 Avenue, 112 St NW, Edmonton, AB
Edmonton, AB

CLC Celebrates New Special Issue: Affecting Feminist Literary and Cultural Production

The special issue “Affecting Feminist Literary and Cultural Production/Affects féministes dans les productions littéraires et culturelles” is now out with Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture & Social Justice.

Co-edited by CLC Research Affiliate Libe García Zarranz, along with Evelyne Ledoux-Beaugrand, the issue features a foreword from our very own director Marie Carrière. The special issue also includes the work of executive board member Maïté Snauwaert, along with a number of other affiliates of the centre.

“Affecting Feminist Literary and Cultural Production/Affects féministes dans les productions littéraires et culturelles” was in part inspired by a conference organized by the CLC and the Université de Montréal (and with thanks to the Trudeau Foundation), which occurred in Fall 2013: Part II of the Conference on Women’s Writing in Canada and Québec – “Affecting Women’s Writing in Canada & Québec Today.”

To view the issue, click here.


2018 CLC Research Seminar: Transactions and Exchange Values / Séminaire de recherche du CLC: Transactions et valeurs d’échange

Winter 2018 CLC Research Seminar

Transactions and Exchange Values
in 20th and 21st Cent. Literary Productions in Canada and in Québec

March 9th, 2018

Senate Chamber, Old Arts Building

University of Alberta

organized by Dr. Dominique Hétu, postdoctoral fellow (SSHRC, CLC)


Recent events such as the Equal Pay Law in Iceland, the resignation of a BBC China editor in protest over gender pay gap, reports of African migrants being forced into slavery in Libya, and the legal and socio-political protests in reaction to the building of pipeline projects from Indigenous groups and climate justice activists have drawn attention to the ongoing effects of sexism, racism, and colonial economies in global markets. Moreover, the related problematic significance and implications of caring labour, ongoing refugee crises, mass consumerism, and the geopolitical pressures of globalization have further highlighted historical patterns of oppression that rely on and produce different forms of transaction and exchange values.

Inspired by the cluster of meanings and contexts that these two words summon, we invite proposals that explore the role of literature in understanding and challenging the asymmetries and limits that affect relational experiences pertaining to the following topics:

– Racial, Gender, and Economic Justice
– Restoring Indigenous Economies
– Property, Ownership, and Obligations
– Land, Space, and Borders
– Cosmopolitanism, Mobility, and Transnationalism
– Traffic, Theft, Dispossession, and Exploitation
– Complicity, Resistance, and Power
– Barter and Trade Systems and Alternative Economic Forms
– Labour and Precarity
– Poverty Narratives and Aesthetics of Culture-from-Below
– The Politics and Ethics of Account-ability and Response-ability
– Solidarity, Empathy, and Compassion
– Gift Giving and Reciprocity
– Debt and Credit
– Scarcity and Excess
– Commodification and Objectification
– Geographies of Consumerism
– The Ethics of Tourism
– More-than-human and Posthuman Negotiations

We encourage comparative, multidisciplinary, and interdisciplinary perspectives and methodologies. Please send your 200-word proposal (in English or French) along with a short biographical note (100 words) to htu@ualberta.ca before February 10th, 2018. Panel proposals (of 3 or 4 papers) should include a short introduction to the panel’s topic followed by a 200-word abstract for each paper.

Download the CFP here.


Séminaire de recherche du CLC, hiver 2018

Transactions et valeurs d’échange
dans les productions littéraires du 20e et 21e siècle au Canada et au Québec

9 Mars 2018

Senate Chamber, Old Arts Building

Université de l’Alberta

organisé par Dr. Dominique Hétu, chercheure postdoctorale (CRSH, CLC)


Des événements récents, tels que la loi sur l’égalité salariale en Islande, la démission de la rédactrice en chef de la BBC Chine pour protester contre l’écart salarial entre les femmes et les hommes, les reportages sur les migrants africains vendus comme esclaves en Libye, et les recours légaux et manifestations organisées par des groupes autochtones et des activistes environnementalistes pour résister à la construction de pipelines, ont souligné la persistance du sexisme, du racisme et des économies coloniales dans les marchés mondialisés. Ces événements, en plus des enjeux liés au travail du care, aux crises des réfugiés, à la consommation de masse, et aux pressions géopolitiques de la mondialisation, exposent d’autant plus ces motifs historiques d’oppression qui produisent et s’appuient sur différentes formes de transactions et de valeurs d’échanges.

Motivées par les nombreuses expressions et contextes que ces deux notions convoquent, nous invitons des propositions qui explorent le rôle de la littérature dans la compréhension et la contestation des asymétries et des limites qui affectent les expériences relationnelles se rattachant aux thèmes suivants :

– La justice raciale, économique et de genre
– Restauration des économies autochtones
– Propriété, possession et obligations
– Territoire, espace et frontières
– Cosmopolitisme, mobilité et transnationalisme
– Trafic, vol, dépossession et exploitation
– Complicité, résistance et pouvoir
– Troc, système d’échange et formes alternatives d’économie
– Travail et précarité
– Récits de pauvreté et esthétiques de la culture-d’en-bas
– Politiques et éthiques de l’account-ability et de la response-ability
– Solidarité, empathie et compassion
– Don et réciprocité
– Dette et crédit
– Rareté et abondance
– Marchandisation et objectification
– Géographies de la consommation
– Éthiques du tourisme
– Négociations plus-qu’humaines et posthumaines

Nous encourageons les approches comparatives, multi- et interdisciplinaires. Veuillez envoyer votre proposition de 200 mots ainsi qu’une notice biographique de 50 mots à Dominique Hétu (htu@ualberta.ca) d’ici le 10 février 2018. Les propositions de panels (de 3 ou 4 communications) devront inclure une brève présentation du panel, suivie d’un résumé de 200 mots pour chaque communication.

Télécharger le CFP ici.

2018 CLC Poetry Contest

The CLC Poetry Contest is back! This year’s theme is Transactions and Exchange Values. Enter to win $150 and to see your poem published in Glass Buffalo.

The contest is open to all students at the University of Alberta and will award the best poem in French and in English.

Deadline is February 2, 2018.

See details here: 2018 Poetry Contest – ENGL

2017 CLC Scholarly Lecture with Erin Wunker

Join us on Friday, October 27 at 4:00 PM for the 2017 CLC Scholarly Lecture with Erin Wunker. She will deliver the keynote that concludes the 2017 CLC Research Seminar with a talk titled “Against Despair: Feminist Friendship as Praxis.” This lecture takes place in the Student Lounge of the Old Arts Building.

All are welcome to this free event. A reception will follow.

2017 CLC Research Seminar: Figures of/du care

Join us on Monday, February 27, 2017 for the 2017 CLC Research Seminar, organized by CLC Postdoctoral Fellow Dominique Hétu.

View and download our program by clicking here.



2017 CLC Research Seminar

Join us on Monday, February 27, 2017 for the 2017 CLC Research Seminar, organized by CLC Postdoctoral Fellow Dominique Hétu.

View and download our program by clicking here.

CLC Research Seminar 2017


Figures of Care and of the Ordinary in Contemporary Canadian Literatures

Figures du care et de l’ordinaire dans les littératures canadiennes


Monday, February 27th 2017

Salter Reading Room, 3-95 Humanities Center

Monday, February 27th 2017

Canadian Literature Centre

University of Alberta

Edmonton, AB


Organized by Dominique Hétu, Postdoctoral Fellow (SSHRC, CLC)




8:30                  Coffee/Welcome participants (Humanities Center 4-29)


9:00                  Introduction (Salter Reading Room, Humanities Center 3-95)

                        Daniel Laforest, CLC acting director


Panel 1             Politics of Care and Transcultural Vulnerabilities / Vulnérabilités transculturelles et politiques du                          care


9h15                 Danielle Lamb


“Caregivers: Grand(parenting) in Métis Picture Books”


9h35                 Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike


“Care-less-ness in Jane Urquhart’s Sanctuary Line


9h50                 Asma M’Barek


“Vulnérabilité et postures du care dans Ru de Kim Thúy »


10h10                Questions/Discussion    


10h30               Break/Pause (4-29)



Panel 2                         Practices of Care/Pratiques du care



10h45                Russell Cobb


Dumb Okies, Rednecks, and White Trash: Caring about Class.” 


11h05                Emily Hoven


Spatializing Everyday Care: Field Notes from Edmonton’s Cloverdale Bridge”


11h25                Emma and Joseph Pivato


Maintaining Personhood in the Context of Care: A Dialogue”

11h45                Questions/Discussion


12h05                Lunch



Panel 3                         Poetics of Care/Poétiques du care



1h15pm             Genève Rousseau


« Raconter le particulier dans Kuessipan de Naomi Fontaine : la mosaïque             ordinaire »


1h35                 Riley Klassen-Molyneaux                                                


                                    « Care de sa culture : la langue, le temps et la terre dans Bâtons à                                                                                     message/Tshissinuatshitakana de Joséphine Bacon et Née de la pluie et de la terre de                                                Rita Mestokosho »


1h55                 Amanda Lim


                                    “The Good and Infinite Life: Philosophy, Ethics and Wellness in Anne Carson’s                                                  ‘Water Margins’”


2h15                 Questions/Discussion



2h35                 Break/Pause



Panel 4                         Imagined Futures of Care/Imaginer le futur du care



2h55                 Emilia Nielsen


“Rereading Cereus Blooms at Night: Explicating Figures of Care”


3h15                 Dylan Bateman


“Moving Away from Waste: Kinship with Water in Rita Wong’s undercurrent.


3h35                 Question/Discussion




3h55                 Keynote


Dominique Hétu

                                    “Cats, Care, and Hospitality: The Ordinary and the Extraordinary

                                    in the Works of             Heather O’Neill”



4h45                 Recap/Conclusion


5pm                  CLC Poetry Contest Award Reception

2017 CLC Kreisel Lecture | Heather O’Neill

2017 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Heather O’Neill

My Education. On unusual muses and mentors. And how I had to teach myself everything in order to cross the class divide.”

Thursday, March 9, 2017 | 7:30 PM | Timms Centre for the Arts
Pay-what-you-can | Reception & signing to follow


Watch Heather O’Neill’s 2017 CLC Kreisel Lecture: