Judy Brown, 1954–2013
We are sad to announce the passing of our friend and colleague Judy Brown on September 1, 2013. Since 2005, Judy served as an associate editor at Canadian Literature. She was an award-winning teacher in the English Department at UBC and a dynamic editor at the journal. Her passionate commitment to the fields of Canadian Literature, Children's Literature, and Technical/Professional Writing was remarkable.
Judy will be remembered by us at the journal as an exceptionally kind and generous person who worked thoughtfully and compassionately. Jennifer Lin, one of our former co-op students who worked closely with Judy in her role as reviews editor reflected on her time with Judy,
she seemed to have an aura about her; one that exuded warmth, patience, and care. As an associate editor, Judy was one of the best. Her diligence and expert eye for catching mistakes reflected strongly in her work. Associate editor Kathryn Grafton remembers her
as calm, inviting, supportive, and thoroughly invested in students while editor Margery Fee remarked on Judy’s
friendliness, kindness, and good cheer and added,
over the years she contributed a huge amount to Canadian Literature. Associate editor Glenn Deer recalls that Judy was
endlessly generous with advice and support. She was absolutely devoted to the welfare of her students during all of her years with us. Glenn recalls that her service to the department of English was so valued by former Canadian Literature editor Laurie Ricou that
at a department meeting he bent down on one knee before her to demonstrate his heartfelt appreciation for her work. I worked with Judy on the review section for the past eight years and was always inspired by Judy’s quiet diligence, generosity, and care.
A few years ago, after she received the 3M Teaching Award in recognition of her outstanding work as a teacher, Judy said,
If you’re looking for a life where you’re always going to be stretched, challenged, surprised, and inspired by your students, or at least be open to being inspired by your students, then this is a really good life to choose. Judy passed away after a life of inspiring students, colleagues, readers, and friends. She will be missed.
Laura Moss, Acting Editor
Canadian Literature 2012 Essay Prize
Winner: Meredith Quartermain.
T’ang's Bathtub: Innovative Work by Four Canadian Poets. Spec. Issue 21st Century Poetics, ed. Clint Burnham and Christine Stewart. Canadian Literature #210/11 (Winter 2011): 116–132.
Honorable Mention: Annette Hayward.
Littérature et politique au Québec pendant la première moitié du vingtième siècle: Prolégomènes. Spec. Issue Spectres of Modernism, ed. Dean Irvine. Canadian Literature #209 (Summer 2011): 68–88.
Judges: David Staines, U of Ottawa (chair), Louise Ladouceur, U of Alberta, and Faye Hammill, U of Strathclyde.
We are delighted to announce
Meredith Quartermain has won this year’s Canadian Literature award for best article with
T’ang’s Bathtub: Innovative Work by Four Canadian Poets. Quartermain describes herself as very much a full-time cultural worker. Her novel Rupert’s Land, her fifth book since 2000, is coming out this fall from NeWest Pess and she’s hard at work on another novel. She also runs Nomados Literary Publishers (designing, typesetting and producing chapbooks by other writers) and other cultural activities like the writing women’s network at Rhizome Café in Vancouver.
Annette Hayward won honorable mention for her essay
Littérature et politique au Québec pendant la première moitié du vingtième siècle." She is an Emerita Professor of French Studies department at Queen’s University, whose work focuses on Quebec and French-Canadian literature, in particular the institution of literature and writing by women. She is currently doing research on the Anglo-Canadian critical reception of Quebec literature. Her book La querelle du régionalisme au Québec: Vers l'autonomisation de la littérature québécoise (2006) is a pioneering work, based on exhaustive research that still stands as a benchmark of reference. Its publication earned it the Prix Gabrielle-Roy as well as her first Governor General’s Award.
Judges’ comments on Quartermain:
They found the essay
highly ambitious in its engagement with big ideas—the renewal of poetic language and the relationship between poetics and
politics—but also hugely attentive to the detail and texture of the poetry and essays considered. The author evolves out of this a very persuasive argument
against the idea that poetry must be politically purposeful. At the same time, she acknowledges the power of the language experiments of poets such as Jeff
Derksen, Roger Farr, Erín Moure and Lisa Robinson, to In sum, the essay was
begin to undo social controls binding them to social injustice.
intelligent, convincing, and beautifully written.
Judges’ comments on Hayward:
It is quite a bold intervention, which sets out a very clear aim for itself and reaches an unambiguous and important conclusion: that there was no
incompatibility between literary modernism and the
old left in Quebec during the first half of the twentieth century (even though writers’ political
orientations were often determined more by their milieu than by their literary tendencies.) This may appear too straightforward and definite a conclusion,
but I think it is justified by the extensive evidence which is marshaled in this essay. Each example is outlined with remarkable conciseness and clarity,
and Hayward also offers essential background detail on the political and literary history of early twentieth-century Quebec. These short contextual
accounts are valuable in themselves—for instance I suspect that Anglophone scholars sometimes lose sight of the fact that a split between
regionalists/nationalists and modernists/’exotic’ writers was just as much evident in Quebec as in English Canada. Substantial primary, secondary and
archival research has informed this piece.
We thank the judges who assessed a set of four essays nominated by the associate editors from all the articles published in 2011, as well as the ACQL for letting us make the announcement at their annual prize reception.
Current Issue: #215 (Winter 2012)
Canadian Literature’s Issue 215 (Winter 2012) is now available. This special issue entitled
Indigenous Focus features articles by Renate Eigenbrod, K. J. Verwaayen, Paul Murphy, Mareike Neuhaus, Angela Van Essen, Anouk Lang, an interview with Richard Van Camp by Sylvie Vranckx, Margery Fee’s editorial on The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and a collection of new poetry and book reviews.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) is coming to Vancouver from September 18th to 21st, 2013. The University of British Columbia has suspended classes for a day while the commission is in session to allow faculty, staff, and students to attend. Why is the university taking such an exceptional step? Many Canadians—including UBC students—think Canada has treated Aboriginal people fair and square and that their land has come to us through official channels. Don’t they get special treatment in return for all that land? Only if you definespecialnegatively, since even after Stephen Harper’s apology for the residential schools in 2008, the federal government continues to spend less—often much less—per capita on educating Aboriginal students than the provinces spend on non-Aboriginal students (Sniderman n. pag.). Given that history lessons have tended to focus on Sir John A. Macdonald and the railway rather than Louis Riel and the buffalo, it’s not surprising that many Canadians don’t know much about Indigenous peoples in Canada. If you read the guide for new Canadians—Discover Canada: The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship—you will see that although Aboriginal people are now listed as one of the three founding peoples, there’s not much there that would help anyone understand the need for a TRC on Indian Residential Schools or the Idle No More movement, for that matter. And yet bureaucratic idling has been a very effective tool of colonization. The motto of the TRC isFor the child taken, for the parent left behind.It might also add,for the Canadians kept in the dark.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada
2012 Canadian Literature Essay Prize Nominees
The Canadian Literature Essay Prize is awarded annually to the best of the 24 or so articles we publish every year. We hope in this way to signal our eagerness to receive and recognize the best submissions in our field. We know that some readers are graduate students and junior academics looking for the best examples on which to model their own writing, and one goal of this award is to make it clear what our adjudicators (selected from the editorial team and the editorial board) think is the best. We know that to receive such an award from ones peers is always welcome, and we hope that the award will encourage those who win it to continue to produce their best writing.
—Margery Fee, editor
- Alan Filewod,
Authorship, Left Modernism and Communist Power in Eight Men Speak(#209, Summer 2011)
- Annette Hayward,
Littérature et politique au Québec pendant la première moitié du vingtième siècle" (#209, Summer 2011)
- Karl Jirgins,
Neo-Baroque Configurations in Contemporary Canadian Digital Poetics(#210/11, Autumn/Winter 2011)
- Meredith Quartermain,
Tang’s Bathtub: Innovative Work by Four Canadian Poets(#210/11, Autumn/Winter 2011)
Interview with Tamas Dobozy
Well, I always loved the reading it put me in touch with. It also gave me a view into the national academic community, which was larger and more varied than I would have imagined. I think the sheer variety of it was an inspiration—all these people working in all those areas, with new ones emerging, it seemed, by the day. When I started, Bill New had just handed over the journal to Laurie [Ricou], who I think ran it in an interim way until Eva-Marie [Kröller] showed up, and then she ran it while I was there. I loved that job, really, just being in the midst of those people, all fanatically dedicated to things I cared, and still care, about quite deeply. You need that as a writer and an academic, that sense of shared passion. It sustains you. Beyond that, I think it represented a cultural work we really need here in Canada, gathering up the shreds of a lot of disparate and sometimes isolated artistic projects and creating a repository or an archive where they come together in dialogue and are preserved for people down the road who’ll be able to glimpse back at our rituals and fixations in order to better understand and manage their own.
—Tamas Dobozy, on his time as a student assistant at Canadian Literature. Read the rest.
Current Issue: #214 (Autumn 2012)
Canadian Literature’s Issue 214 (Autumn 2012) is now available. The issue features articles by Germaine Warkentin (on Northrop Frye’s Anatomy of Criticism), Andrea King (on Anne Hébert’s Les fous de Bassan and Mary Novak’s Conceit), Joanne Leow (on the poetry of Wayde Compton), and Anne María Faile-Marcos (on Kim Barry Brunhuber’s Kameleon Man), and new Canadian poetry & book reviews.
Also in this issue is
Thinking Together: A Forum on Jo-Ann Episkenew’s Taking Back Our Spirits: Indigenous Literature, Public Policy, and Healing. This special section includes writing by Susan Gingell, Deanna Reder, Allison Hargreaves, Daniel Heath Justice, Kristina Fagan Bidwell, and Jo-Ann Episkenew.
In November, we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the year of our founding editor’s birth (see canlit.ca for more). Of course, George Woodcock’s life work consisted of far more than putting out seventy-three issues of a quarterly critical journal between 1959 and 1977. Alan Twigg’s remarks at the celebration focused on the remarkable success of the non-profit aid organizations founded by him and his wife Inge, for example. What interests me here, however, is how the journal is still shaped by his commitments. Somehow, I just never get around to reading all the back issues of the journal. What I’m basing my remarks on, then, is what has come down to me from working as an associate editor and editor and reading here and there about its history.
How Anarchist is Canadian Literature?
Call for Papers: Science & Canadian Literature
In the three decades since the last science-themed issue of Canadian Literature appeared, much has changed in both literary and scientific circles. New literary theories have come to shape our critical conversations, new Canadian authors have emerged, publishing has been fundamentally changed with the advent of the Internet; at the same time, sheep have been cloned, food has been genetically modified, computers have shrunk to pocket size. And neither of these circles exists in isolation: each has affected the other, with differences that have made a difference (to borrow the language of ecologist Gregory Bateson) across the disciplinary boundaries. […more details…]
George Woodcock: Collected editorials from Canadian Literature
Compiled and edited by Canadian Literature’s Glenn Deer (Associate editor, poetry) and Matthew Gruman (Marketing and Communications), this collection contains all the editorials George Woodcock wrote during his tenure as editor and
Balancing the Yin and the Yang, written as a guest editorial in 1992. Also included are Alan Twigg’s
In Praise of an Omnivorous Intelligence and Glenn Deer’s
Alive to Unfashionable Possibilities: Reading Woodcock’s Collected Editorials—two tributes written specifically for this edition.
George Woodcock: Collected editorials from Canadian Literature is available in the EPUB format (list of supported devices), and will soon be available for the Amazon Kindle.
Transforming Knowledge Dissemination in Quebec and ROC: A Bilingual Roundtable
Co-organized by Canadian Literature and the Canadian Literature Centre.
Bilingual Canadian literary institutions like the journal Canadian Literature at UBC and the Canadian Literature Centre at the University of Alberta face evolving challenges regarding translation, the circulation of information, the shifting modes of knowledge dissemination, and the moving boundaries of popular and academic discourse. How do we constructively address such challenges? What are the roles of literary institutions in public debate? Is a bilingual journal or centre still feasible in Canada? How can scholars working in both languages co-produce research? And what is the place for research pursued in other, non-official languages? Why do public intellectuals (such as, for instance, Charles Taylor, Roméo Dallaire, Michael Ignatieff, and Chantal Hébert) tend to cross borders (linguistic, geographic, cultural) when academics hesitate? The current speed of humanities research and the speed of technology are not in sync. What could the new rhythms of research look like? How do we use the compression of time and space of globalization to our intellectual advantage?
This bilingual roundtable will concentrate on ways to productively and creatively transform knowledge dissemination today across Quebec and the ROC.
The session will be a roundtable with up to 8 people making 5-minute prepared interventions followed by group discussion. Please send a 100-word proposal (in English or French) for a 500-word intervention to Laura Moss (email@example.com) and Daniel Laforest (firstname.lastname@example.org) on or before 15 January 2013.
Current Issue: New Work on Early Canadian Literature #213 (Summer 2012)
Canadian Literature’s Issue 213 (Summer 2012) with guest editors Janice Fiamengo and Thomas Hodd is now available. The issue features articles by I.S. MacLaren, Michele Holmgren, Brooke Pratt, Jennifer Harris, Florian Freitag, Jennifer Henderson, and Heather Jones, and new Canadian poetry & book reviews.
This special issue springs from the editors’ shared passion for early Canadian literature in English and our awareness of how much bibliographical, historical, and critical research remains to be done in the field. It would be wrong, of course, to argue that our early literature has been ignored or neglected—far from it. As a field of study, however, it remains an uneven and tantalizingly patchwork affair, not unlike the maps of early Canada that enticed the explorers and adventurers who set out to be the eyes of the Hudson’s Bay or North West fur-trading companies.
—Janice Fiamengo and Thomas Hodd,
New Work on Early Canadian Literature.