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Recalling Early Canada: Reading the Political in Literary and Cultural Production
     

Recalling Early Canada: Reading the Political in Literary and Cultural Production

by Jennifer Blair (Editor), Daniel Coleman (Editor), Kate Higginson (Editor), Lorraine York (Editor), Carole Gerson (Foreword by)
 
ReCalling Early Canada is the first substantial collection of essays to focus on the production of Canadian literary and cultural works prior to WWI. Reflecting an emerging critical interest in the literary past, the authors seek to retrieve the early repertoire available to Canadian readers-fiction and poetry certainly, but family letters, photographs, journalism,

Overview

ReCalling Early Canada is the first substantial collection of essays to focus on the production of Canadian literary and cultural works prior to WWI. Reflecting an emerging critical interest in the literary past, the authors seek to retrieve the early repertoire available to Canadian readers-fiction and poetry certainly, but family letters, photographs, journalism, and captivity narratives are also investigated. Filling a significant gap in Canadian criticism, the authors demonstrate that to recall the past is not only to shape it, but also to reshape the present. This fresh interest in the cultural past, informed by new approaches to historical inquiry, has resulted in a unique and diverse investigation of more than two centuries of a little known "early Canada."

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"ReCalling Early Canada positions the act of recall not as simplistic retrieval but rather as a dynamic interaction between past and present. The essays collected in this book aim to look to the past not necessarily to participate in the protect of nation building, but rather to query the methodology, politics and ends of historical engagement; the processes of selection through which certain texts, objects and figures are deemed to be worthy of study; the frames through which we analyze the past; and the provisional characteristics of such frames..ReCalling Early Canada begins with a lengthy and insightful introduction that draws attention to the complexities of the 'politics of recollection' (xvi) upon which this project is based. The editors emphasize the importance of reading the non-canonical together with the canonical in order to challenge the contingencies of value upon which such a distinction is based. They foreground the limitations of the nation as an organizational category by reading Canada as a 'site of conflicting confederacies' located within, and sometimes poised against, the nation as a geopolitical entity (xxiii). The introduction also draws attention to the tendency of the archive to shape how we recall early Canada..[T]he essays collected in ReCalling Early Canada indicate a welcome shift away from the 'colony to nation' paradigm towards a more nuanced engagement with history, place and nation." Heather Milne, TOPIA 15, Spring, 2006.

"[The editors] have provided a solid body of work that can be analysed from a variety of perspectives." George Melnyk, The Canadian Historical Review, Vol. 87, No. 3, September 2006

"[T]he essays cover terrain as varied as Theresa Gowanlock's captivity narrative, the documentation of the Aboriginal 'family' by white photographers, and conflicting national identities as portrayed in French and English fiction. This collection is highly recommended for both undergraduate and graduate collections in academic libraries." Allison Sivak, Canadian Book Review Annual, 2006

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780888644435
Publisher:
University of Alberta Press
Publication date:
05/01/2005
Series:
University of Alberta Press Currents Series
Pages:
440
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Jennifer Blair is a doctoral student in the Department of English at McMaster University. Her dissertation explores the connections between literature and architecture in early Canada.

Daniel Coleman is Professor of Canadian Literature, Department of English and Cultural Studies, McMaster University. He lives in Hamilton.

Kate Higginson's doctoral work examines the writing of colonial captivities and indigenous internments in Canada. Her latest article maps Mohawk or Haudenosaunee nationalism and the memorialization of Joseph Brant in the photography of Shelley Niro (Essays on Canadian Writing, Fall 2003).

Lorraine York teaches Canadian literature at McMaster University. She has written books on Timothy Findley, Canadian fiction and photography, women’s collaborative writing, and has edited a book of essays on Margaret Atwood. She is currently finishing a book on Canadian literary celebrity.

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