Saturday, July 11, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
The aspects -- a gang of boys with a 'title' and a leader; an antagonistic and idiosyncratic master; japes in and out of school, etc -- are all there. We'll look in lecture at explanations for Richler's choice.
(Orwell, of course, is to be read universally for its own justification.)
Thursday, May 28, 2009
The Honours programme is an excellent embellishment to an English degree, and an enjoyable experience to boot. The Department's online link is here.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Courtesy of classfellow R.H, an apposite poem by Miriam Waddington.
geese, fish, eskimo
storms and winter
like a geography but
just scratch us
and we bleed
history, are full
of modest misery
to double-talk double-take
in a country
to be single in.
Are we real or
did someone invent
us, was it Henry
Hudson Etienne Brûlé
or a carnival
of village girls?
a flock of nuns
a pity of indians
a gravyboat of
explorers or those
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Monday, May 11, 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2009
We're about to enjoy a holiday in honour of Queen Victoria. Tallying up her vestigial influence on Canada is an inexhaustible pastime -- Victoria, Alberta, Prince Edward Island, Prince Albert, New Westminster, Regina and many many more were all named in her honour, for a start. Canada, from its 1867 confederation, is a Victorian nation at birth.
I came across this oblique & tendentious article in the Telegraph on the predominance of women at the political head of England following on from Victoria's eminent sixty-four year regnancy:
Have you noticed that modern Britain is the most matriarchal society in the history of the world? The four most famous figures in the public service since the war have been women - the Queen Mother, the Queen, Diana, Princess of Wales and Margaret Thatcher.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
- The 5 most recent posts are displayed on the main page.
- A permanent link list, entitled "Pertinent & Impertinent" is always visible on the sidebar of the course website, containing direct links to crucial information.
- Also on the sidebar, always visible, is the "Blog Archive" displaying direct links to all posts on the course website.
- The "Blog Archive" has sections for years 2009 and 2007. Our course links are under the 2009 section. The 2007 archive is for a previous iteration of the course which may, or may not, be interesting for you.
- An "Older Posts" hotlink is always visible at the bottom of the main page which displays the next 5 most recent posts.
- Certain PowerPoint lecture slides are occasionally posted on the course website.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
A national literature is an essential element in the formation of national character.
E.H. Dewart, “Introductory Essay,” Selections from Canadian Poets, Montreal, 1864.
Canada is an alien nation to many of its constituents. Immigrant cultures, by definition; First Nations, from imposed European economic and political structures; French from Anglophone; geographic region from geographic region; urban elites from rural and suburban culture; Don Cherry from Margaret Atwood: for these and more, alien-nation is all but indisputably the state, and the State of Canada. Indeed, the inability to find any agreement at all on what Canadian identity is - beyond the puerile or the petitio - suggests that Canada is alienated from itself. To illustrate that this is true no less for the dominant culture as for those more marginal, this course presents for reading and analysis established texts from the mainstream of Canada’s national literature, 1920 to now, that, each in an intriguingly different way, represents the Canadian alien nation. Students will be encouraged to express and develop their own position on this, in response to the texts as the course progresses. A Term ‘alienation’ project invites the introduction of any aspect of Canadian culture congenial to the student’s interests to embellish a creative and scholarly personal engagement with the literary texts and course theme. After all, being told what to think by institutional elites is yet one more aspect of Canadian alien nation, and from which students will doubtless be delighted to find themselves here spared.
Montgomery, L. M. Emily of New Moon
Wilson, Ethel The Innocent Traveller
Richler, Mordecai The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz
Kogawa, Joy Obasan
Brown, Chester Louis Riel
Avison, Margaret Always Now: Volume I
15% Productive participation