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Literary Criticism Canadian

Writing Alberta

Building on a Literary Identity

edited by George Melnyk & Donna Coates

contributions by Katherine Govier, Tasha Hubbard, Geo Takach, Neil Querengesser, Cynthia Zimmerman, Harry Vandervlist, Joseph Pivato, Moira Day, R. Douglas Francis & Jars Balan

Publisher
University of Calgary Press
Initial publish date
Jun 2017
Category
Canadian, 21st Century, General, 20th Century
  • Paperback / softback

    ISBN
    9781552388907
    Publish Date
    Jun 2017
    List Price
    $34.95

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Description

Alberta writing has a long tradition. Beginning with the pictographs of Writing-on-Stone, followed by Euro-Canadian exploration texts, the post-treaty writing of the agrarian colonization period, and into the present era, Alberta writing has come to be seen as a distinct literature. In this volume Melnyk and Coates continue the project of scholarly analysis of Alberta literature that they began with Wild Words: Essays on Alberta Literature (2009). They argue that the essays in their new book confirm that Alberta's literary identity is historically contingent with a diverse, changing content, that makes its definition a work-in-progress. The essays in this volume provide contemporary perspectives on major figures in poetry and fiction, such as Robert Kroetsch, Sheila Watson, Alice Major, and Fred Stenson. Other essays bring to light relatively unknown figures such as the Serbian Canadian writer David Albahari and the pioneer clergyman Nestor Dmytrow. Writing Alberta: Building on a Literary Identity offers a detailed discussion of contemporary Indigenous writers, an overview of Alberta historiography of the past century, and the fascinating autobiographical reflections of the novelist Katherine Govier on her literary career and its Alberta influences. This Collection demonstrates that Alberta writers, especially in the contemporary period, are not afraid to uncover, re-think, and re-imagine parts of Alberta history, thereby exposing what had been lain to rest as an unfinished business needing serious re-consideration.

About the authors

George Melnyk is an associate professor of Canadian studies and film studies in the Faculty of Communication and Culture, University of Calgary. He is a cultural historian who specializes in Canadian cinema. Among his film publications are One Hundred Years of Canadian Cinema (2004) and Great Canadian Film Directors (2007). Most recently he has published The Young, the Restless, and the Dead: Interviews with Canadian Filmmakers (2008) in the Film and Media Studies series at WLU Press.

George Melnyk's profile page

Donna Coates teaches in the English Department at the University of Calgary. She has published dozens of articles and book chapters on Australian, Canadian, New Zealand, and American women's responses to the First and Second World Wars, the Vietnam War, and contemporary warfare in fiction and drama. With Sherrill Grace, she has selected and edited Canada and the Theatre of War, Volume One (2008) and Volume Two (2010). With George Melnyk, she edited Wild Words: Essays on Alberta Writing (2007). She has edited Sharon Pollock: First Woman of Canadian Theatre, published in 2015 with the University of Calgary Press. She is currently completing a book on Australian women's war fictions and editing an eight-volume collection on women and war for the History of Feminism series published by Routledge.

Donna Coates' profile page

KATHERINE GOVIER’s most recent novel, The Ghost Brush, is about the daughter of the famous Japanese printmaker Hokusai. It was published in the United States as The Printmaker’s Daughter, and in translation in Romania, Spain, Quebec and Japan. Katherine’s novel Creation, about John James Audubon in Labrador, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year in 2003. She won Canada's Marian Engel Award for a woman writer (1997) and the Toronto Book Award (1992). She has twice been shortlisted for Ontario’s Trillium prize. The author of twelve books, Katherine has been instrumental in establishing two innovative writing programs, Writers in Electronic Residence and The Shoe Project, which works to improve the written and spoken English of immigrant women. Katherine travels between Toronto and Canmore, Alberta, in the Rocky Mountains.

Web: www.govier.com

Facebook: KatherineGovierWrites

Twitter: @kmgovier

Katherine Govier's profile page

Tasha Hubbard's profile page

Geo Takach is a prolific and consummate writer, instructor, speaker, and filmmaker based in Wild Rose Country. His passion for, and his unbridled fascination and frustration with, Alberta has driven his work to define the soul of a province grandly mythologized and misunderstood. He has suffered for his art, and now he would like it to be your turn.

Geo Takach's profile page

Neil Querengesser is professor of English at Concordia University College of Alberta.

Neil Querengesser's profile page

Cynthia Zimmerman has been a highly regarded commentator on Canadian playwriting and on the voice of women on the Canadian stage for her whole career at Glendon College, York University, where she is a professor in the English department. Previously book review editor of the international journal Modern Drama and a member of its advisory board, Zimmerman has authored or co-authored a number of books, including Playwriting Women: Female Voices in English Canada. She has produced many articles, chapters, and public papers. She also edited the successful anthology, Taking the Stage, for Playwrights Canada Press.

Cynthia Zimmerman's profile page

Harry Vandervlist's profile page

Joseph Pivato has been a Professor of English and Humanities at Athabasca for many years, and has also been Visiting Professor at other universities. In 1984-85 he was Research Fellow in the Ethnic and Immigration Studies Program at the University of Toronto. In 1987-88 he was the M.A. Elia Chair in Italian-Canadian Studies at York University and taught the first course on Italian-Canadian writing offered anywhere. In 1991 he was The Canadian Visiting Fellow at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. On these occasions he was able to do original research in Ethnic Minority Writing and the History of Italian-Canadian writing. His books include: Contrasts: Comparative Essays on Italian-Canadian Writing (Guernica, 1985), Echo: Essays on Other Literatures (1994) and The Anthology Of Italian-canadian Writing (Guernica, 1998). He was one of the writers included in Pier Giorgio Di Cicco'sRoman Candles (1978).

Joseph Pivato's profile page

Moira Day is an active researcher and writer in the area of Canadian theatre with a particular focus on women in prairie theatre prior to 1960. She served as English-language book editor until recently, and now as co-editor for Theatre Research in Canada/Recherches Théâtrales au Canada. She has spoken at conferences both within Canada and internationally in Ireland and China.

She is currently working on a book on Elizabeth Sterling Haynes, another important pioneer in the area. She teaches Canadian drama, play analysis, dramatic literature, and theatre history aesthetics and criticism at the University of Saskatchewan.

Moira Day's profile page

R. Douglas Francis is a professor of history at the University of Calgary. He has published extensively in the areas of Canadian and western Canadian intellectual and cultural history.

R. Douglas Francis' profile page

Jars Balan's profile page

Editorial Reviews

Writing Alberta is an extraordinary collection of thirteen deftly crafted and presented essays… [It] is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to community and academic library Canadian Literary Studies collections. - Helen Dumont, Midwest Book Review

Imagine, if you will, that you are standing beside me in a bookstore. Then imagine me telling you that I am reading a collection of academic essays about Alberta writers. Is that you I see streaking away to the farthest bookshelf” Is that me you see streaking away beside you” Well, no, not this time.

According to poet John Ciardi, the best that any literary analysis can do is to prepare the reader to enter a work more perceptively. It's a subtle gift, and the best of the 13 essays in Writing Alberta do just that.. As a whole, Writing Alberta will deepen understanding of Alberta literature… Early writers could be as full of hiss and vinegar as writers today - and as determined to find effective ways to write about this place we call Alberta.

- Merna Summers, Alberta Views

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Other titles by Neil Querengesser

Other titles by Cynthia Zimmerman

Other titles by Joseph Pivato

Almond Wine and Fertility

by (author) Licia Canton
foreword by Joseph Pivato

Comparative Literature for the New Century

edited by Giulia De Gasperi & Joseph Pivato
foreword by Linda Hutcheon

Ten Canadian Writers in Context

edited by Marie Carrière, Curtis Gillespie & Jason Purcell
contributions by Lynn Coady, Ying Chen, Michael Crummey, Jennifer Bowering Delisle, Kit Dobson, Caterina Edwards, Marina Endicott, Lawrence Hill, Daniel Laforest, Alice Major, Don Perkins, Julie Rodgers, Joseph Pivato, Eden Robinson, Gregory Scofield, Winfried Siemerling, Pamela Sing, Maïté Snauwaert, Kim Thúy & Angela Van Essen

Sheila Watson: Essays on Her Works

edited by Joseph Pivato

Sheila Watson

Essays on Her Works

by (author) Sheila Watson
edited by Joseph Pivato

Africadian Atlantic

Essays on George Elliott Clarke

by (author) Alexander MacLeod & Diana Brydon
edited by Joseph Pivato

Pier Giorgio Di Cicco

Essays on His Works

edited by Joseph Pivato

Writing the Terrain

Travelling Through Alberta with the Poets

contributions by Ian Adam, Robert Stamp, Tammy Armstrong, Margaret Avison, Douglas Barbour, John O. Barton, Doug Beardsley, Bonnie Bishop, E.D. Blodgett, Robert Boates, George Bowering, Tim Bowling, Jan Boydol, Gordon Burles, Murdoch Burnett, Anne Campbell, Weyman Chan, Leonard Cohen, Dennis Cooley, Joan Crate, Michael Cullen, Cyril Dabydeen, Lorne Daniel, Alexa DeWiel, Jason Dewinetz, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Cecelia Frey, Gary Geddes, Gail Ghai, Deborah Godin, Jim Green, Leslie Greentree, Vivian Hansen, Tom Henihan, Michael Henry, Walter Hildebrandt, Gerald Hill, Robert Hilles, Nancy Holmes, Richard Hornsey, Tom Howe, Aislinn Hunter, Bruce Hunter, Laurence Hutchman, Sally Ito, Pauline Johnson, Aleksei Kazuk, Robert Kroetsch, Fiona Lam, William Latta, Tim Lilburn, Alice Major, Kim Maltman, Miriam Mandel, Sid Marty, David McFadden, Barry McKinnon, Erin Michie, Deborah Miller, Anna Mioduchowska, James M. Moir, Colin Morton, Erin Moure, Charles Noble, P.K. Page, Rajinderpal Pal, Ruth Roach Pierson, Joseph Pivato, Roberta Rees, D.C. Reid, Monty Reid, R. rickey, Ken Rivard, Stephen Scobie, Allan Serafino, Joan Shillington, Greg Simison, Carol Ann Sokoloff, Karen Solie, Stephan Stephansson, Peter Stevens, Ivan Sundal, Anne Swannell, Vanna Tessier, Colleen Thibadeau, John O. Thompson, James M. Thurgood, Eva Tihanyi, Yvonne Trainer, Aritha Van Herk, Rosalee van Stelten, Miriam Waddington, James Wreford Watson, Wilfred Watson, Tom Wayman, Phyllis Webb, Jon Whyte, Christine Wiesenthal, Sheri-D Wilson, Christopher Wiseman, Stacie Wolfer, Rita Wong, Richard Woollatt & Jan Zwicky

F.g. Paci

edited by Joseph Pivato

Echo

Essays on Other Literatures

edited by Joseph Pivato

Other titles by Moira Day

Other titles by R. Douglas Francis

Canada and the British World

Culture, Migration, and Identity

edited by Phillip Buckner & R. Douglas Francis

The Technological Imperative in Canada

An Intellectual History

by (author) R. Douglas Francis

The Prairie West as Promised Land

contributions by Doug Owram, R. Douglas Francis, Chris Kitzan, Laurence Kitzan, Matthew Wrangler, David Hall, Sarah Carter, Anthony W. Rasporich, Bill Waiser, Randi Warne, Bradford J. Rennie, Catherine A. Cavanaugh, Steve Hewitt, George Melnyk, Michael Fedyk & Brett Fairbairn

One West, Two Myths II

Essays on Comparison

contributions by C.L. Higham, Robert Thacker, R. Douglas Francis, Brain W. Dippie, William H. Katerberg, Sarah Carter, Roger L. Nichols, David L. Williams, Lee Clark Mitchell, Aritha Van Herk, Frederick Jackson Turner & J.M.S. Careless

Rediscovering the British World

edited by Phillip Buckner
contributions by R. Douglas Francis, Phillip Bucker, Catherine Hall, James Belich, Elizabeth Elbourne, Paul Pickering, Douglas Lorimer, Bettina Bradburry, Adele Perry, Frank Bongiorno, Jeffrey Grey, Patrick H. Brennan, Paul Ward, John Lambert, Satadru Sen, Wendy Webster, R. Scott Sheffield, David Lowe, Stuart Macintyre & Stuart Ward

Challenging Frontiers

The Canadian West

edited by Lorry Felske & Beverly J. Rasporich
contributions by van Herk Aritha, R. Douglas Francis, Ann Davis, Sarah Carter, Janice Dickin, Lorry W. Felske, Emma Larocque, Robert Seiler, Tamara Seiler, Brian Rusted, Geoffrey Simmins, Michael McMordie, Madeline A. Kalbach, Lloyd Sciban, David Taras, Max Foran, Marcia Jenneth Epstein & Beverly Raporich

The Prairie West: Historical Readings

edited by R. Douglas Francis & Howard Palmer