Beyond Borders to Bioregions: Teaching and Reading Ecocritically

Announcing a special issue of Canadian Literature.

Guest edited by Anne L. Kaufman and Robert Thacker.

We seek essays, reviews, and other responses for a special issue of Canadian Literature honouring the teaching, scholarship, and example of Laurie Ricou.

Since the publication of his path-breaking study of Canadian prairie fiction, Vertical Man/Horizontal World (1973), Laurie Ricou has been a unique and important presence in Canadian literature. Following the trajectory of place he has lived himself, his most recent books, Salal: Listening for the Northwest Understory (2007), The Arbutus/Madrone Files (2002), and A Field Guide to A Guide to Dungeness Spit (1997) are border-crossing works of literary eco-criticism as well as models for knowing a place, living responsibly in it, and attending to its demands—physical, psychic, and aesthetic. There, Ricou champions the Pacific Northwest bioregion, its people, its literature, its flora and fauna. He has been no less conscientious about these details in the classroom, as his students can attest. This understated scholar and his subversive approaches to facilitating intellectual growth have not yet received their critical due. This collection of essays, sparked by a panel at the Western Literature Association meeting in Missoula in October 2011—a place of deep personal and professional commitment for Ricou himself—seeks to remedy this deficit.

All submissions to Canadian Literature must be original, unpublished work. Essays should follow current MLA bibliographic format (MLA Handbook, 7th ed). Maximum word length for articles is 6500 words, which includes notes and works cited.

Submissions should be uploaded to Canadian Literature’s online submission system at by the deadline of June 1st, 2012.

Questions in advance of the deadline may be addressed to:

Anne L. Kaufman ( and Robert Thacker (