- Martin Loschnigg (Editor) and Klaus-Dieter Ertler (Editor)
Canada 2000: Identity and Transformation / Identité et transformation - Central European Perspectives on Canada / Le Canada vu à partir de l'Europe centrale. Peter Lang Publishing Group (purchase at Amazon.ca)
- Wolfgang Klooss (Editor) and Hans Braun (Editor)
Giving Voice: Canadian and German Perspectives. Schulz-Kirchner Verlag (purchase at Amazon.ca)
Reviewed by Martin Kuester
These are conference proceedings from European Canadian Studies centres. Canada 2000: Identity and Transformation / Identité et transformation brings together a wealth of divergent papers by Canadians and Europeans presented on the occasion of the opening of the Centre for Canadian Studies at the University of Graz in Austria. As is to be expected from the title, the eighteen contributions vary in quality and approach, but essays on the Canadian literatures are at the centre here. As far as English-Canadian literature is concerned, the book is framed by two personal contributions by the eminent narratologist and established Canadianist Franz Karl Stanzel, who looks back at the history of Canadian Studies and affirms the importance of a "traditional" thematic and imagological approach for European newcomers to this field. Waldemar Zacharasiewicz follows suit with a study of the (not always positive) images of Austria in Canadian literature. Michelle Gadpaille traces the importance of border imagery in Canadian prose fiction at the millennium. Carla Comellini studies expressions of identity in several writers leading up to Ondaatje’s concept of a new postcolonial identity. Wolfgang Klooss contributes a solid reading of Canadian historical fiction in which he sees Canadian nationality being replaced "by a post-colonial notion of an identity beyond nation." Martin Löschnigg looks at the identities of literary figures in Atwood, Shields and Urquhart, while Di Brandt discovers "distinct chunky flavours" in Adele Wiseman’s multicultural Winnipeg, and Aleksander Kustec comments on Northrop Frye’s views on twentieth-century changing identities.
The contributions in French start with the memoir "D’une prison à l’autre" by Négovan Rajic, a Canadian writer of Serbian origin who describes his postwar odyssey from Belgrade through a Graz prison to Paris and Montreal. The memoir is followed by Ljiljana Matic’s emotional eulogy of the author. Micheline Cambrón traces the construction of a national identity in the nineteenth-century periodical Le Canadien. Essays by Alessandra Ferraro, Peter Klaus, and Klaus-Dieter Ertler deal with the important contributions of immi- grant writers, l’écriture migrante, to Québécois literature, with discussion of works by Monique Bosco, Régine Robin, Fulvio Caccia, Sergio Kokis, Ying Chen, and Marco Micone. Éva Martonyi outlines three stages in the quest for identity in Québécois literature. Two final essays introduce an interdisciplinary perspective: the linguist Elke Nowak looks at the relationship between world view and vocabulary in Inuit languages, and Willibald Posch studies the legal systems of Austria and Quebec from a comparative perspective.
In Giving Voice: Canadian and German Perspectives, some contributions interpret the title as relating to literature. Eric Annandale discusses the appropriation of Aboriginal voice in Nancy Huston’s fiction. Markus Müller discusses multicultural voices in Prairie writing while Kathryn Young analyzes the construction of women in poetry published in the Quebec Gazette. But "voice" is also extended to such topics as university surveys and the criteria they leave out in evaluating students (James M. Dean) or the effectiveness of multiculturalism in furthering community-building (Lance W. Roberts, Mathias Boes, Susanne von Below).
Derek Hum and Rüdiger Jacob see the Census as a postmodern text or a contribution "to empowering people to raise their own voice," whereas Hans Braun and Alexandra Caster discuss methods in which clients can be given a voice in the choice of welfare services and providers. Barry Ferguson and Derek Hum describe the way in which Chinese immigrants to Canada are first barred from and later entitled to having their own voice, while Fred Stambrook discusses two phases in German and Austrian history in which minority voices that have long been forgotten once existed.
- Literature and Medicine by Alan Bewell
Books reviewed: Teaching Literature and Medicine by Anne Hunsaker Hawkins and Marilyn Chandler McEntyre
- The Writer and the Beast by Janice Fiamengo
Books reviewed: Other Selves: Animals in the Canadian Literary Imagination by Janice Fiamengo
- Emily Montague by Janice Fiamengo
Books reviewed: The History of Emily Montague by Laura Moss
- A Search for April Raintree by Renée Hulan
Books reviewed: In Search of April Raintree. Critical Edition. by Beatrice Culleton Mosionier and Cheryl Suzack
- Three Independent Critics by Graham Good
Books reviewed: Uncommon Readers: Dennis Donoghue, Frank Kermode, George Steiner, and the Tradition of the Common Reader by Christopher J. Knight
MLA: Kuester, Martin. Trans-Atlantic Views. canlit.ca. Canadian Literature, 8 Dec. 2011. Web. 22 May 2013.
This review originally appeared in Canadian Literature #181 (Summer 2004), (Wiseman, Livesay, Sime, Connelly, Robinson). (pg. 112 - 113)
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