Spring 2019 - ENGL 455W D100

Topics in Canadian Literature (4)

Class Number: 1676

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    We 1:30 PM – 5:20 PM
    AQ 2120, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    One of ENGL 354, 357, or 359.



Advanced seminar in Canadian literature. May be organized by author, genre, or critical approach. Reserved for English honors, major, joint major and minor students. Writing. Students with credit for ENGL 455 may not take this course for further credit. Writing.


This course focuses on two of the most influential and significant poets of western Canada: Phyllis Webb (born 1927) and Fred Wah (born 1939). Both have won the Governor General’s Award for poetry, amongst many other honours. With both poets publishing recent editions of Collected Poems, this is an excellent time to explore their careers in their entirety. The diversity and range of the two poets’ work will allow us to address questions of gender, sexuality, race, place, ecology, and the poetics of long serial form poetry. As both Webb and Wah began to take an interest in Indigenous art and culture in the 1970s, we will also take a careful approach to the question of “appropriation,” ending the course by reading the (re?)appropriative strategies of Nisga’a poet Jordan Abel


  • Participation 10%
  • Presentation and short (1000 w) essay 20%
  • Reading journal 20%
  • Essay proposal 10%
  • Essay (2500-3000 w) - expansion of presnetation essay and/or Journal material 40%



Phyllis Webb, Peacock Blue
ISBN: 9780889229143

Fred Wah, Scree
ISBN: 9780889229488 

Jordan Abel, The Place of Scraps
ISBN: 9780889227880

Department Undergraduate Notes:

IMPORTANT NOTE Re 300 and 400 level courses: 75% of spaces in 300 level English courses, and 100% of spaces in 400 level English courses, are reserved for declared English Major, Minor, Extended Minor, Joint Major, and Honours students only, until open enrollment begins.

For all On-Campus Courses, please note the following:
- To receive credit for the course, students must complete all requirements.
- Tutorials/Seminars WILL be held the first week of classes.
- When choosing your schedule, remember to check "Show lab/tutorial sections" to see all Lecture/Seminar/Tutorial times required.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html