Department of English

University of Toronto

ENG252Y1Y L0101

ENG252Y1Y  L0101  Lec T3-5; Tutorial R3 OR R4
Canadian Literature
Dr. Tania Aguila-Way
Office Telephone:
416-978-6764
Office Address: Jackman Humanities Building, Room TBA 
Email address: TBA

Brief Description of Course: This course will introduce students to major texts and critical discussions in Canadian literature. We will read poetry and prose from the eighteenth century to the present, situating our literary texts in relation to their social, political, and cultural contexts. Beginning with the journals of Canada’s early explorers and settlers, we will examine the recurring motifs and narrative strategies that Canadian writers have employed in order to situate themselves in a landscape that has often been characterized as inhospitable and difficult to assimilate. In addition to exploring the role of geography and place in Canadian literature, our lectures and discussions will also address such themes as colonization and settlement; race, class, gender, and the lasting legacies of settler colonialism; First Nations literatures; the rise of modernism and postmodernism in Canada; the role of historical fiction and “historiographic metafiction” in Canadian literary history; the relationship between literary production and shifting constructions of Canadian national identity; and migration, multiculturalism, and transnationalism in Canada.

Required Reading: Cynthia Sugars and Laura Moss, eds., Canadian Literature in English: Texts and Contexts, Volume 1 & Volume 2; John Richardson, Wacousta; L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables; Sinclair Ross, As For Me and My House; A.M. Klein, The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz; Margaret Atwood, Surfacing; Michael Ondaatje, In the Skin of a Lion; Dionne Brand, Thirsty; Eden Robinson, Monkey Beach

First Three Authors/Texts: Selections by Brian Maracle, Samuel Hearne, David Thompson, and John Franklin; John Richardson.

Method of Instruction: Lecture and tutorials.

Method of Evaluation:
First-term essay (15%), first-term test (20%), second-term essay (25%), examination (30%), informed class participation (10%).

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