University of Toronto


1000 Poems Per Night: TRB Live, January


Happy New Year! 2017 begins with a packed list of Toronto readings and events. Rowers Reading Series gets things moving on January 10 with a night of poetry and prose by Joan Crate, Adebe DeRango-Adem, Jacob McArthur Mooney, and Hoa Nguyen (6:30pm, Supermarket, 268 Augusta Avenue). Circle January 11 on your calendar for back-to-back readings. At 6:30pm at Glad Day Bookshop (499 Church St...

Two New Poems by George Elliott Clarke


The poems happened completely by chance. This “chanciness” is deliberate. I begin to write something that’s vaguely about African slavery, and then a direction or impulse or voice imposes itself on the writing. These poems – Solomon 2 and Experience 1 – are based on my interpretation of how unlettered black (ex) slaves understood The Holy Bible – as a concrete work, as being about...

National Embarrassment/Bore Sparks Some Great Literary Criticism


Yesterday we learned from David Gilmour that being in conversation with “a young woman” means one doesn’t need to take one’s words seriously—but then Gilmour also taught us that literary “seriousness” is just for straight white dudes. Education’s great, eh? I can hear Jane Austen guffawing into a carefully hemmed sleeve in the sky. A lot has already been said on author and University of Toronto...

Hipsterizing the Louvre, drawing Mansbridge, and ruling over Legoland: Bookishness for June 17, 2013


This could mean many things. New research out of U of T shows that reading literary fiction makes us more comfortable with ambiguity. Hipsters take over the Louvre Leo Caillard reimagines classic statues as contemporary hipsters. Meet Toronto’s Legolord Legoland is his kingdom. Restaurants where you’d be better off without a date …the better to focus on your book. Ten bookish...

Freedom to Read Week in Toronto: A guide


Though some of you will no doubt choose to celebrate Freedom to Read week in Toronto by exercising your freedom to stay home and read (for which we would never fault you), the week of Feb. 24-Mar. 2, 2013, does promise a thrilling roster of events about censorship and books to draw you out of the house. →Type Books is hosting a “Challenged Books Display” called CENSORED until Mar...

TRB Podcast: Dr. Pamela Palmater speaks about Indigenous rights and Idle No More


Listen here: Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser. Lawyer, Ryerson professor and member of the Mi’kmaq community Dr. Pamela Palmater has been one of the key organizers of the Idle No More movement in Toronto. On Jan. 17, 2013 she spoke to a packed room...

CanLit Canon Review #12: Harold Innis’s Empire and Communications


In an attempt to make himself a better Canadian, Craig MacBride is reading and reviewing the books that shaped this country. What is most remarkable about Harold Innis is his consistency through the years. Whether it’s his first book, The Fur Trade in Canada or, 20 years later, his last book, Empire and Communications, Innis is always, without exception, unreadable. Unlike Fur Trade, Empire and...

Dr. Pamela Palmater To Speak at U of T’s Centre for Aboriginal Initiatives


Dr. Pamela Palmater, a Mi’kmaw lawyer and Associate Professor in the Department of Politics and Public Administration at Ryerson University, will be speaking at the Centre for Aboriginal Initiatives Hart House (7 Hart House Circle, in the 2nd floor Debates Room) at the University of Toronto on January 17, 2013 at 2pm. Dr. Palmater will be speaking on “Legal Constitutional Implications of Recent...

Danger Music: On the Intimacy of Screaming


Reviewed in this Essay: Dick Higgins’s “Danger Music #17” performed by Jenn Cole and Didier Morelli for The Future of Cage: Credo conference at the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Toronto, Oct. 26, 2012 Didier Morelli said that when he plunged his head into his kitchen sink to recite Dante’s Inferno, he imagined the bodily technology of the sound...

Starting the conversation: A review of First Nations 101: Tons of Stuff You Need to Know About First Nations People

First Nations 101

Reviewed in this essay: First Nations 101: Tons of Stuff You Need to Know About First Nations People, by Lynda Gray (Adaawx, 2011, 275 pages). I’m a First Nations survivor of the ’60s and ’70s “Scoop”, the government-imposed movement that took hundreds of Aboriginal children away from their families, culture, traditions and heritage. I was subsequently adopted out to a non...

Indigenous Writers’ Gathering A Smashing Success


Renowned authors Lee Maracle, Daniel Heath-Justice, Richard Wagamese and award winning Metis poet Marilyn Dumont all descended on the U of T campus for the one-day Indigenous Writers’ Gathering last week. After a breakfast with the writers, panels kicked off with traditional Metis Rogarou stories. Other workshops included discussing fiction with Richard Wagamese, “Declaring and Taking Back...

The History of Reading as Told by Students at the University of Toronto


  This last semester I taught a course called “Readers and Readerships” to close to a hundred and fifty bright young Torontonians. A core second-year course in the Book and Media Studies program at the University of Toronto, the class surveyed the history of Western reading from the pre-history of writing to the present. We talked about thrilling topics from the oldest library...