It is now commonly accepted that Canadian literature has become a global literature, implying that any understanding of textual localities is traversed by vectors that exceed, complicate, and extend the nation in physical, historical, and cultural ways. But the gaze is seldom reversed and little attention has been paid to the role of international scholarship in the current transformation and development of the field.
How are Canadian texts read and circulated beyond the national borders? What is the place of Canadian literature in the institutional spaces of universities outside Canada? How do those transnational contexts negotiate the relationship between texts and readers? Are there defining differences in the ways non-Canadian scholars approach CanLit? How does transnational scholarship influence, challenge, enrich, and rescale Canadian literary production?
This special issue invites scholars of Canadian literature from around the globe to engage critically with any aspect of Canadian literary production, dissemination, or reception. Essays should implicitly bring to view the two-way direction of reading and writing Canadian literature globally, demonstrating the porosity of transnational scholarship as well as advancing innovative perspectives that may contribute to the rescaling of the field.
All submissions to Canadian Literature must be original, unpublished work. Essays should follow current MLA bibliographic format (8th ed). Articles should be between 6500 and 7000 words, including endnotes and works cited.
Submissions should be uploaded to Canadian Literature’s online submissions system (OJS) by the deadline of May 15, 2018.
Vancouver, located on the unceded Coast Salish territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, Tsleil-Watuth, and Stó:lō First Nations, is an important urban nexus of art, literature, activism, and other forms of social and political organizing and expression within Canada. While its diversity has led to the emergence of well-developed cultural and political communities, writers and artists in Vancouver have also originated new and innovative collaborations across disciplinary boundaries. Sometimes this transdisciplinary work has been inspired by political causes, such as the environmentalist resistance to pipelines and old-growth logging or the Indigenous-led challenges to the effects of settler-colonialism (including land rights, discussions of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Idle No More, ReMatriate, Red Power, and more) or the ongoing fights against neoliberalism and gentrification (especially of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside). Sometimes this transdisciplinary work has been inspired by aesthetic initiatives, such as the McLuhan-inspired intermedia work (of the Western Front) in the 1960s and 1970s, or the experiments with interdisciplinary Surrealism in the 1970s and 1980s, or the fusion of various visual arts and literary communities across the past century. Authors and artists in the 1960s wrote about Vancouver as a marginal community, outside of the glare of international attention. Today, though, Vancouver’s situation on the west coast as a vibrant hub in a trans-Pacific network of overlapping business and cultural industries demands a reconceptualization of the city that reflects its overwhelming connectedness. For better and for worse, the city has become a cultural capital. Papers are encouraged to address any combination of the arts, literatures, and politics of Vancouver, and the interconnections these have with other scales of engagement, including the national and planetary issues in which Vancouver participates.
This special issue invites essays that examine the representation of Vancouver in art and literature, that consider individual authors and artists, that explore the state of aesthetic communities (visual, literary, architectural, filmic, etc.) in the city, or that address the confluence of politics and aesthetics. We are particularly interested in papers that explore links between art and resistance, art and the archive and collective/institutional memory, art in the neoliberal gentrification of the city and housing crises, and art and settler-colonial histories and decolonization efforts. We are also interested in papers that consider avant-garde groups and affiliations (such as TISH, the hippy and Beat poets of the 60s and 70s, Press Gang, the Vancouver School of photo-conceptualists, and the Kootenay School of Writing, amongst others), contemporary urban space, the politics of architecture, micro-literary histories, and transnational or transborder considerations. Canadian Literature publishes essays on fiction, poetry, non-fiction, drama, and inter-genre collaborations.
All submissions to Canadian Literature must be original, unpublished work. Essays should follow the bibliographic format of the MLA Handbook, 8th ed. Articles should be between 6,000 and 7,000 words, including endnotes and works cited. Submissions should be uploaded to Canadian Literature’s online submissions system (OJS) by the deadline of August 31, 2017. See our submission guidelines for details. Expected publication date of the issue is fall 2018.
Guest editors of this issue will be Gregory Betts, Julia Polyck-O’Neill, and Andrew McEwan.