Well, our search for “Halloween” on the CanLit website certainly pulled up a mixed bag of treats! Not spooky, but certainly, at times, alarming, we’re happy to feature a wide variety of goodies for your calorie-free Halloween enjoyment!
Next up is Clint Burnham‘s “The Plague of Orientalism: Reading Kevin Chong in the Pandemic.” This article is fresh off the press, so you’ll need a subscription to access it! Luckily, you can check out your nearest library to see if they have access, or you can get the full issue, Pandemics, right here on our site!
In “Pronunciations in Diaspora,” Bryan Thao Worra writes, “Whether it’s the Halloween misadventures in her tale “Chick-A-Chee!” or reflections on what the music of Randy Travis meant to a Lao mother, or discovering the fallibility of a father in the titular “How to Pronounce Knife,” we are given a chance to see a community journey from an intimate and refreshing perspective. We see a full range of emotions and questions, humour and deep reflections, that affirm our shared humanity and the importance of the best of our cultural traditions.” You can read the full forum dedicated to Souvankham Thammavongsa’s How to Pronounce Knife on our Issue 242 page.
From 1976, Andrew Thompson Seaman’s “Fiction in Atlantic Canada” argues that “No group of authors in Canada has been more singly concerned with the sense of place and the value of heritage than our Maritime fiction writers, and those values can often be perceived through the intensified quality of “felt life” in their writings” (26). The article briefly mentions Halloween, describing a character’s feeling of angst that can be read as resonating through “Halloween” as a cultural mythology. You can download the full Issue 68-69. Plus, we found this amazing ad from the issue:
Of course, the theme of our next goodie is truly haunting: the Canadian legal system! In Issue 152-53, Gary A. Boire writes on “Theatres of Law: Canadian Legal Drama.” Boire writes, “Ontario, the centre of political and legal order, is presented numerous times as a ghoulish Halloween upheaval, a carnival of precisely those furious desires and violent excesses displaced by the centre onto the periphery.”
And from the same issue, then editors Eva Marie Kröller, Margery Fee, Iain Higgins, and Alain-Michel Rocheleau recall youthful experiences in “Remembering the Sixties: A Quartet,” including the university classroom as a site of the uncanny:
“Eventually I went to university (but I bussed and biked it, since the flowery vans had long since faded), and it has so far held me there the way flypaper holds a fly (it was designed for them, after all). Which is not to suggest that I’ve grown up to be Gregor Samsa—even as the sixties butterfly has shrunk back to a larval state in sundry niche-market cocoons. It has more to do with Hallowe’en, since I now get paid to go trick-or-treating in the classroom, where my costumes are still transparently traditional: a ghost in the machine, a skeleton in a disciplinary closet, a stuffed shirt, even sometimes a hippie, professing to love made and making words” (6).
From all of us here at Canadian Literature, Happy Halloween!