Kreisel Series / Série Kreisel

 

2023 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Wayde Compton: "Toward an Anti-Racist Poetics"


On March 8, 2023, multidisciplinary writer, historian, and editor Wayde Compton delivered the 17th annual Kreisel Lecture, titled "Toward an Anti-Racist Poetics." 

In his talk, Compton explores how we might collectively develop a poetic approach that makes space for diversity by doing away with universalism in both lyric and avant-garde verse. The lecture probes Canada's myths about race and multiculturalism and expands how we think about the role writers play in creating anti-racist imaginaries.

Watch the lecture on the CLC YouTube ChannelPhoto of Wayde Compton Giving the Kreisel Lecture

Wayde Compton has written five books and has edited two literary anthologies. His collection of short stories, The Outer Harbour, won the City of Vancouver Book Award in 2015 and he won a National Magazine Award for Fiction in 2011. His work has been a finalist for two other City of Vancouver Book Awards as well as the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize. In 2006 Compton co-founded Commodore Books, western Canada’s first Black Canadian literary press. Compton has been writer-in-residence at Simon Fraser University, Green College at the University of British Columbia, and the Vancouver Public Library. From 2012-18, he administrated the Creative Writing Program in Continuing Studies at SFU, including the award-winning Writer’s Studio. He is currently working on a re-imagining of The Argonautika by Apollonius of Rhodes as a surrealist slave narrative set on the west coast of North America in the 18th century. Compton is currently the chair of Creative
Writing at Douglas College in New Westminster, BC.

Headshot photo credit: Roger Hur
Event photo credit: Adrien Guyot 

  


  

2022 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Cherie Dimaline: "An Anthology of Monsters: How Story Saves Us from Our Anxiety"

 

On April 21, 2022, we were honoured to welcome Georgian Bay Métis author Cherie Dimaline to the stage of the TIMMS Centre to deliver the 16th annual Kreisel Lecture, titled "An Anthology of Monsters: How Story Saves Us from Our Anxiety."

Watch the lecture on the CLC YouTube Channel

Told from the viewpoint of someone with life-long anxiety (who also happens to be an author), this lecture/essay focuses on the stories we tell ourselves—both the very excellent and the very horrible.

The Rougarou as both belonging and responsibility, witches as empowerment and fear—using examples like these from her own published and forthcoming work, Cherie Dimaline examines the ways in which we empower, crush, survive, and succeed all through stories. We’ll also hear about ways to collect and curate these stories so that we don’t end up buried in an ‘edit reel’.

Basically, this is the tale of an intricate dance with anxiety and how story can help reshape the ways in which we think, the ways we cope, and the very choreography of that dance. And yes, this is largely biographical."

Cherie Dimaline’s The Marrow Thieves shot to the top of the bestseller lists when it was published in 2017, and has stayed there. It won the Burt Award for First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Literature, the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Kirkus Prize in Young Readers’ Literature, was a finalist for the Trillium Book Award, and was a fan favourite in CBC’s Canada Reads (2018). It was also a Book of the Year on numerous lists including National Public Radio, the School Library Journal, the New York Public Library, Globe and Mail, Quill & Quire, and the CBC. Pressure from her young fans spurred Dimaline to write Hunting by Stars, the 2021 sequel to The Marrow Thieves. This new novel has been described as “lush, devastating, and hope-filled” (Kirkus Reviews). Dimaline’s adult novel, Empire of Wild, was an Indigo #1 Best Book of 2019.

From the Georgian Bay Métis Community, she lives in Midland, Ontario.

Event photo credit: Adrien Guyot

 


 

2021 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Vivek Shraya: "Next Time There's a Pandemic" 

Vivek Shraya discusses Next Time There's a Pandemic on CBC Radio's The Next Chapter with Shelagh Rogers

Vivek Shraya shares 'how to fail as a pop star' | Edmonton AM with Mark Connolly, Tara McCarthy | CBC Listen

Vivek Shraya discusses how the pandemic has changed arts and creativity | q with Tom Power | CBC Listen  

 

 

 

Artist and writer Vivek Shraya reflects on how she might have approached 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic differently, and what she wishes we collectively might have done differently.

CLICK HERE to view the event programme.

Vivek Shraya is an artist whose body of work crosses the boundaries of music, literature, visual art, theatre, and film. Her best-selling book I’m Afraid of Men was her­ald­ed by Vanity Fair as “cultural rocket fuel,” and her album with Queer Songbook Orchestra, Part‑Time Woman, was nominated for the Polaris Music Prize. She is also the founder of the publishing imprint VS. Books.

A six-time Lambda Literary Award finalist, Vivek was a Pride Toronto Grand Marshal and has featured on The Globe and Mail’s Best Dressed list. She is a director on the board of the Tegan and Sara Foundation, an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Calgary, and is currently adapting her debut play, How To Fail As A Popstar, into a television pilot script with the support of CBC.  

 

 


 

2020 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Leanne Betasamosake Simpson: "A Short History of the Blockade: Giant Beavers, Diplomacy & Regeneration in Nishnaabewin" 

Listen to the 2020 Kreisel Lecture on CBC Radio "Ideas"
Watch the 2020 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

On March 12, 2020, renowned Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer, musician and artist Leanne Betasamosake Simpson delivered the 15th annual Kreisel Lecture, titled "A Short History of the Blockade: Giant Beavers, Diplomacy & Regeneration in Nishnaabewin."

“This lecture uses Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg stories, storytelling aesthetics and practices to explore the generative nature of Indigenous blockades through our relative, the beaver or in Nishnaabemowin, amik.  Moving through genres, shifting through time, amikwag stories become a lens for the life-giving possibilities of dams and the world-building possibilities of blockades, deepening our understanding of Indigenous resistance, as a negation and an affirmation.”

Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a renowned Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer and artist who has been widely recognized as one of the most compelling Indigenous voices of her generation. Her work breaks open the intersections between politics,  story, and song, bringing audiences into a rich and layered world of sound, light, and sovereign creativity.

Working for over a decade as an independent scholar using Nishnaabeg intellectual practices, Leanne has lectured and taught extensively at universities across Canada and has twenty years of experience with Indigenous land-based education. She holds a PhD from the University of Manitoba, and teaches at the Dechinta Centre for Research & Learning in Denendeh.  Her latest book, As We Have Always Done:  Indigenous Freedom Through Radical Resistance was published by the University of Minnesota Press in the fall of 2017, and was awarded Best Subsequent Book by the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.

Leanne was named the inaugural RBC Charles Taylor Emerging writer by Thomas King in 2014 and in 2017/18 she was a finalist in the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and the Trillium Book Award. She has published extensive fiction and poetry in both book and magazine form. Her second book of short stories and poetry, This Accident of Being Lost is a follow-up to the acclaimed Islands of Decolonial Love in Spring 2017.

Leanne is Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg and a member of Alderville First Nation.

 


 

2019 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Dionne Brand

Watch the 2019 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

Don't miss the 2019 CLC Kreisel Lecture delivered by Dionne Brand. Internationally acclaimed poet and novelist Dionne Brand, winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize and the Governor General's Award, gave a lecture titled "An Autobiography of the Autobiography of Reading." Brand was introduced by bestselling author Lawrence Hill.

Brand’s talk takes up her reading of early and persistent narratives that mark and spectacularise Black being. She explores what it means to write back to, or against, dominant colonial, imperialist, and racist tropes, and how, finally, a Black poetics can be a remedy for narrative.

Dionne Brand’s literary credentials are legion. Her 2010 book of poetry, Ossuaries, won the Griffin Poetry Prize, and her other accolades include the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Trillium Book Award and the Pat Lowther Memorial Award. Her novel In Another Place, Not Here was selected as a NYT Book Review Notable Book and a Best Book by the Globe and Mail; At the Full and Change of the Moon was selected a Best Book by the LA Times and What We All Long For won the Toronto Book Award. In 2006, Brand was awarded the Harbourfront Festival Prize for her contribution to the world of books and writing, and was Toronto’s Poet Laureate from 2009 to 2012. In 2017, she was named to the Order of Canada, and 2018 saw the publication of two new titles: Theory and The Blue Clerk. Brand is a Professor in the School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. She lives in Toronto.

 


 

2018 CLC Kreisel Lecture: Michael Crummey

Listen to the 2018 Kreisel Lecture on CBC Radio "Ideas"
Watch the 2018 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The past twenty-five years have witnessed the flowering of a Newfoundland literature that has had a significant presence on the national and international stage. The place and its people have featured in the work of writers such as Annie Proulx, Wayne Johnston and Lisa Moore, all of whom have been published to acclaim in countries around the world. The emergence of a significant body of fiction in which Newfoundland’s culture and history figures prominently has done much to influence the image of Newfoundland that people from the province and in the outside world “see.” And it has also raised niggling questions about the use of history and real-life figures to animate fictional stories. Is there a limit to the liberties a writer can take with the real world? Is there a point at which a fictionalization of history becomes a falsification of history? What responsibilities do writers have to their readers, and to the historical and cultural materials they exploit as sources?

Using Newfoundland and its recent literature as a case study, and drawing on Michael Crummey’s own experience appropriating historical characters to fictional ends, “Most of What Follows is True” is an examination of the complex relationship between fact and fiction, between the “real world” and the stories we tell to explain the world to ourselves.

 

  


 

2017 CLC Kreisel Lecture | Heather O’Neill

Heather O'Neill on CBC Radio
Watch the 2017 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Education. On unusual muses and mentors. And how I had to teach myself everything in order to cross the class divide.”

The 2017 CLC Kreisel Lecture will be delivered by two-time Giller Prize-shortlisted writer Heather O’Neill, author of LULLABIES FOR LITTLE CRIMINALS, THE GIRL WHO WAS SATURDAY NIGHT, DAYDREAMS OF ANGELS, and the new THE LONELY HEARTS HOTEL. Her lecture is titled: “My Education. On unusual muses and mentors. And how I had to teach myself everything in order to cross the class divide.” Writer and scholar Kit Dobson will deliver the introduction. This pay-what-you-can event will be followed by a reception and a book signing.

 


 

2016 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood on CBC Radio Ideas
Watch the 2016 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Henry Kreisel Memorial Lecture is the CLC’s most prestigious annual public event. The lectures are co-published in the “Kreisel Series” by the Canadian Literature Centre and the University of Alberta Press. For 2016, the CLC has invited Margaret Atwood.

 

“WHAT DID WE THINK WE WERE DOING…”
… we young writers of Canada?”  That’s a question Margaret Atwood asked during a Canadian Literature Centre talk in Edmonton.  In excerpts from the talk and in conversation with Paul Kennedy, she considers the accidental but sometimes intentional creation of a culture and a tradition.  Some things were unimaginable decades ago, like the diversity and strength of Canadian literature today…or the PowerPoint she uses to help tell the tale.

 


 

2015 CLC Kreisel Lecture with Lynn Coady: Who Needs Books?

Lynn Coady on CBC Radio "Ideas"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction by Paul Kennedy, host of CBC Ideas. This event will be recorded by CBC Radio One.

The Henry Kreisel Memorial Lecture is the CLC’s most prestigious annual public event. The lectures are co-published in the “Kreisel Series” by the Canadian Literature Centre and the University of Alberta Press. For 2015, the CLC has invited Lynn Coady. She is a Canadian novelist, journalist and TV writer, originally from Cape Breton Island, NS, now dividing her time between Edmonton and Toronto. Her collection of short stories Hellgoing won the 2013 Scotiabank Giller Prize. Her 2011 novel, The Antagonist, was shortlisted for the 2011 Giller Prize and published by Alfred A. Knopf in the USA in January, 2013. Her fiction has also been published in the UK, Germany, Holland and France. Recently her short story “Mr. Hope” appeared in issue #47 of McSweeny’s Quarterly.

All are cordially invited to attend this spectacular event. A reception and book signing will follow the lecture.

 When: April 13, 2015 7:30 PM

Where: Timms Centre for the Arts, University of Alberta

 


 

2014 Henry Kreisel Memorial Lecture with Tomson Highway

Watch the 2014 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Henry Kreisel Memorial Lecture is the CLC’s most prestigious annual public event.

The lectures are co-published in the “Kreisel Series” by the Canadian Literature Centre and the University of Alberta Press. For 2014, the CLC has invited playwright and novelist Tomson Highway, who enjoys an international career as a playwright, novelist, and pianist/songwriter. He is considered one of this country’s foremost Indigenous voices. He is best known for his award-winning plays, The Rez Sisters (1986), Dry Lips Oughta Move to Kapuskasing (1989), Rose (2000), and Ernestine Shuswap   

Gets Her Trout (2005) as well as his critically -acclaimed novel, Kiss of the Fur Queen (1998).

All are cordially invited to attend this spectacular event of talk and music. A reception and book signing will follow the lecture.

 

  


 

2013 Henry Kreisel Commemorative Lecture by Esi Edugyan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre is committed to ensuring Henry Kreisel’s legacy through this annual Henry Kreisel Lecture. The series is a forum for open, inclusive critical thinking and is a tribute to Henry Kreisel himself. Past presenters include Joseph Boyden, Wayne Johnston, Dany Laferrière, Eden Robinson, Annabel Lyon and Lawrence Hill.

This year, the CLC is pleased to announce Esi Edugyan as the 2013 Kreisel lecturer, with an Introduction by Marina Endicott. A reception and book signing will follow. All are welcome, entrance is free and no RSVP required.

Esi Edugyan’s most recent novel, Half Blood Blues, won the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize for Fiction. It was a finalist for the Man Booker Prize, the Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction, the Rogers Writers Trust Fiction Prize, and was longlisted for the 2012 Orange Prize for Fiction. Edugyan has held fellowships in the US, Scotland, Iceland, Germany, Hungary, Finland, Spain, and Belgium. She lives in Victoria, British Columbia with her husband and daughter.

 

 


 

2012 Henry Kreisel Commemorative Lecture by Lawrence Hill

Watch the 2012 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre is committed to ensuring Henry Kreisel’s legacy through this annual Henry Kreisel Lecture. The series is a forum for open, inclusive critical thinking and is a tribute to Henry Kreisel himself. Past presenters include Joseph Boyden, Wayne Johnston, Dany Laferrière, Eden Robinson and Annabel Lyon.

This year, the CLC is pleased to announce Lawrence Hill as the 2012 Kreisel lecturer. A reception and book signing will follow. All are welcome, entrance is free and no RSVP required.

An award-winning Canadian novelist and memoirist, Lawrence Hill is the son of American immigrants — a black father and a white mother — who came to Canada the day after they married in 1953 in Washington, D.C. Hill was greatly influenced by his parents’ work in the human rights movement, and much of his writing touches on issues of identity and belonging. Formerly a reporter with The Globe and Mail and parliamentary correspondent for The Winnipeg Free Press, Hill is the author of three novels, including Some Great Thing (HarperCollins Canada, 1992), Any Known Blood (HarperCollins Canada, 1997), and The Book of Negroes (HarperCollins Canada, 2007), which was longlisted for the Giller Prize and won the 2007 Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, the 2008 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, the 2008 Evergreen Award (presented by the Ontario Library Association), and the 2009 edition of Canada Reads. The Book of Negroes was published in the U.S. under the title, Someone Knows My Name. Hill has also written numerous essays and non-fiction works, and received a 2005 National Magazine Award for best essay for “Is Africa’s Pain Black America’s Burden?”, published in The Walrus. He also penned the screenplay for Seeking Salvation, a documentary film about the Black church in Canada, which won the American Wilbur Award for best national television documentary in 2005.

 

 


 

2011 Henry Kreisel Commemorative Lecture by Annabel Lyon

Watch the 2011 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre is committed to ensuring Henry Kreisel’s legacy through this annual Henry Kreisel Lecture. The series is a forum for open, inclusive critical thinking and is a tribute to Henry Kreisel himself. Past presenters include Joseph Boyden, Wayne Johnston, Dany Laferrière and Eden Robinson.

This year, the CLC is pleased to announce Annabel Lyon as the 2011 Kreisel lecturer. A reception and book signing will follow the lecture. All are welcome, entrance is free and no RSVP required.

Annabel Lyon is a Vancouver fiction writer and teacher. Her first books are Oxygen (2000), and The Best Thing for You (2004), which was nominated for the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize. The Golden Mean (2009), her first novel and third work of fiction, holds the distinction of being the only book nominated that year for all three of Canada’s major fiction prizes: the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Governor General’s Award for English language fiction and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, the last of which it won. The Golden Mean was also nominated for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, and is being published in six languages. Given its provocative book cover, it was banned from BC Ferries in 2010, has earned international critical acclaim, and has become a Canadian bestseller. It was recently named the Grant MacEwan University Book of the Year.

  


 

2010 Henry Kreisel Commemorative Lecture by Eden Robinson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre is committed to ensuring Henry Kreisel’s legacy through this annual Henry Kreisel Lecture. The series is a forum for open, inclusive critical thinking and is a tribute to Henry Kreisel himself. Past presenters include Joseph Boyden, Wayne Johnston and Dany Laferrière.

This year, the CLC is pleased to announce Eden Robinson as the 2010 Kreisel lecturer. A reception and book signing will follow the lecture. All are welcome, entrance is free and no RSVP required.

Eden Robinson is the internationally acclaimed author of Traplines, Monkey Beach and Blood Sports. Traplines was the winner of the New York Times Notable Book of the Year and Britain’s Winfred Holtby Memorial Prize. Monkey Beach was nominated for the Giller Prize, the 2000 Governor General’s Award for Fiction, and was selected as the Globe and Mail’s Editor’s Choice. Robinson is a member of the Haisla and Heiltsuk First Nations. “I was born on the same day as Edgar Allan Poe and Dolly Parton: January 19. I am absolutely certain that this affects my writing in some way.” – Eden Robinson

 

 


 

2009 Henry Kreisel Lecture presented by Dany Laferrière

Watch the 2009 Kreisel Lecture on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre / Centre de littérature Canadienne at the University of Alberta invites you to the 2009 Kreisel Lecture, presented by Dany Laferrière.

Unconventional, controversial, prolific and immensely talented, Dany Laferrière was born in Haïti and adopted Québec as his new home. He achieved critical fame with his first novel, How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired. With humour and clarity, his work examines Haitian, Quebec and North American society and inter-racial relationships.

 

  


 

2008 Kreisel Lecture Presented by Wayne Johnston

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Canadian Literature Centre / Centre de littérature Canadienne at the University of Alberta invites you to the 2008 Kreisel Lecture, presented by Wayne Johnston.

Wayne Johnston was born and raised in Goulds, Newfoundland. He obtained a BA in English from Memorial University and worked as a reporter for the St. John’s Daily News before deciding to devote himself full-time to creative writing. Since then Johnston has written seven books and has been a contributing editor for The Walrus. His first book, The Story of Bobby O’Malley, won the WH Smith/Books in Canada First Novel Award. Baltimore’s Mansion, a memoir dealing with his grandfather, his father, and himself, was tremendously well-received and won the prestigious Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction. His novels The colony of Unrequited Dreams and The Navigator of New York spent extended periods of time on bestseller lists in Canada and have been published in the US, Britain, Germany, Holland, China and Spain. Colony was also identified by The Globe and Mail as one of the 100 most important Canadian books ever produced. Johnston divides his time between Toronto and Roanoke, Virginia, where he has held the Distinguished Chair in Creative Writing at Hollins University since 2004.

Time: 7:30pm

Place: Timms Centre for the Arts, University of Alberta. Corner of 87 Ave. & 112 St.

 


 

2007 Henry Kreisel Lecture presented by Joseph Boyden

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please join us for the CLC’s annual flagship event, the 2007 Henry Kreisel Lecture. This year’s lecturer will be Joseph Boyden, acclaimed author of the prize-winning novel Three Day Road.

Mr. Boyden’s lecture will explore the similarities and differences between Northern Ontario and Louisiana including the social ills of these two different places and the similar social fabric of two cultures–New Orleans African American and Native Canadian.

The event is being co-sponsored by Canadian Literature Centre and the Faculty of Arts at the University of Alberta.

Reception and book-signing to follow! Everyone is welcome to this, and admission is free!

Time: from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Place: Convocation Hall at the University of Alberta