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September 2014Next month
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21 22Visiting Author: Jordan Abel 23 24 25 26Steven Heighton (Writer in Residence) 27
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  1 2 3Research Forum: Chris Bongie 4
5 6 7Visiting Author: Diane Schoemperlen 8 9 10 11
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19 20Visiting Author: Souvankham Thammavongsa 21 22 23 24 25
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September 2014

Jordan Abel poster

Jordan Abel is a Nisga’a writer currently residing in Vancouver. Abel’s conceptual writing engages with the representation of Indigenous peoples in anthropology through the technique of erasure. He has been described as “a master carver of the page” who passes the work of sculpture along to the reader “who reads, and rereads, in three dimensions.” Abel’s chapbooks have been published by Above/Ground Press and JackPine Press. His first book, The Place of Scraps, received substantial critical acclaim and won the Dorothy Livesay prize. His second collection, Un/inhabited, is forthcoming from Talonbooks in October.

When: Monday, 22 September 2014, 1:00–2:30 pm

Where: Watson 517

Steven Heighton poster

Steven Heighton, the Department’s Writer in Residence for Fall 2014, offers a talk and a reading. His most recent books are the Trillium Award finalist The Dead Are More Visible (stories) and Workbook (memos and essays on writing). His novel Afterlands appeared in six countries; was a New York Times Book Review editors’ choice; was cited on best-of-year lists in ten publications in Canada, the USA, and the UK; and has been optioned for film. His stories and poetry have received four gold National Magazine Awards and have appeared in London Review of Books, Best English Stories, Best American Poetry, Zoetrope, Tin House, Poetry, Brick, TLR, New England Review, Agni, and five editions of Best Canadian Stories. He has been nominated for the Governor General’s Award and Britain’s W. H. Smith Award and is a fiction reviewer for the New York Times Book Review.

When: Friday, 26 September 2014, 2:30–4:00 pm

Where: Watson 517

October 2014

Chris Bongie poster

Chris Bongie (Department of English), “The Foundational Fictions of Early Haitian Literature: Juste Chanlatte’s Le cri de la nature (1810) and the Unsettling (Presence) of Race.” This paper will engage with post/revolutionary literary production in Haiti by examining the symptomatically neglected figure of Juste Chanlatte, a man of state who served successively under Dessalines (1804–6), Christophe (1806–20), and Boyer (1820–8), and a writer whose poetry and plays earned him a reputation, by the time of his death in 1828, as the “honorary laureate of the republic.“ The paper focuses on the uniformly negative reception of Chanlatte by nineteenth- and twentieth-century Haitian historians (such as Joseph Saint-Rémy in the 1850s and Hénock Trouillot in the 1960s), in order not only to demonstrate some of the ways in which historical accounts (and evaluations) of him have been thoroughly entangled in a racial (black/mulatto) logic that his work was intent on questioning, but also, in a self-conscious move, to suggest some of the ways that this very same divisive logic continues, hauntingly, to make its presence felt in efforts at salvaging Chanlatte for a contemporary audience attuned to the world-historical importance of the Haitian Revolution and its unsettling aftermath.

Chris Bongie is Professor in the Department of English, Queen’s University. He is the author of three monographs, including the 2008 Friends and Enemies: The Scribal Politics of Post/Colonial Literature. He has translated and edited a number of works from the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries that deal with the Haitian Revolution, the latest of these being a translation and critical edition of Haitian writer Baron de Vastey’s The Colonial System Unveiled, Liverpool University Press, 2014.

When: Friday, 3 October 2014, 2:30–4:00 pm

Where: Watson 517

Diane Schoemperlen, former writer-in-residence at Queen’s and winner of the Marian Engel Award and the Governor-General’s Award for English Fiction, reads from her new collection of short experimental fiction By the Book, published by Biblioasis.

When: Tuesday, 7 October 2014, 1:00–2:30 pm

Where: Agnes Etherington Art Centre

Souvankham Thammavongsa was born in the Nong Khai refugee camp in Thailand in 1978 and was raised and educated in Toronto. She has written three poetry books, all published by Pedlar Press. Her first, Small Arguments, won the ReLit prize. The collection Found was made into a short film by Paramita Nath and was screened at festivals worldwide, including TIFF, L. A. Shorts Fest, and Dok Leipzig. Light, her most recent collection, won the 2014 Trillium Prize for Poetry.

When: Monday, 20 October 2014, 1:00–2:30 pm

Where: Watson 517