Canadian Literature

Canadian Literature

Canadian Literature

Canadian Literature

Synopsis

An important critical study of Canadian literature, placing internationally successful anglophone Canadian authors in the context of their national literary history. While the focus of the book is on twentieth-century and contemporary writing, it also charts the historical development of Canadian literature and discusses important eighteenth- and nineteenth-century authors. The chapters focus on four central topics in Canadian culture: Ethnicity, Race, Colonisation; Wildernesses, Cities, Regions; Desire; and Histories and Stories. Each chapter combines case studies of five key texts with a broad discussion of concepts and approaches, including postcolonial and postmodern reading strategies and theories of space, place and desire. Authors chosen for close analysis include Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Alice Munro, Leonard Cohen, Thomas King and Carol Shields. Key Features
• The first critical guide to Canadian literature in English
• Authors selected on the basis of their popularity on undergraduate courses
• Combines historical and thematic approaches to Canadian writing
• Links close reading of key texts with theoretical approaches to Canadian literature
• Discusses in detail Obasan by Joy Kogawa, Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery, The Republic of Love by Carol Shields, 'Wilderness Tips' and The Journals of Susanna Moodie by Margaret Atwood, Wild Geese by Martha Ostenso, Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels, The Diviners by Margaret Laurence and In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje

Excerpt

The study of English literature in the early twenty-first century is host to an exhilarating range of critical approaches, theories and historical perspectives. 'English' ranges from traditional modes of study such as Shakespeare and Romanticism to popular interest in national and area literatures such as the United States, Ireland and the Caribbean. The subject also spans a diverse array of genres from tragedy to cyberpunk, incorporates such hybrid fields of study as Asian American literature, Black British literature, creative writing and literary adaptations, and remains eclectic in its methodology.

Such diversity is cause for both celebration and consternation. English is varied enough to promise enrichment and enjoyment for all kinds of readers and to challenge preconceptions about what the study of literature might involve. But how are readers to navigate their way through such literary and cultural diversity? And how are students to make sense of the various literary categories and periodisations, such as modernism and the Renaissance, or the proliferating theories of literature, from feminism and marxism to queer theory and eco-criticism? The Edinburgh Critical Guides to Literature series reflects the challenges and pluralities of English today, but at the same time it offers readers clear and accessible routes through the texts, contexts, genres, historical periods and debates within the subject.

Martin Halliwell and Andy Mousley . . .

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