2011: Material Cultures

Material Cultures
May 6-8, 2011.

Material Cultures in Canadian and Transnational Contexts was held from May 6-8, 2011. The conference program included keynote addresses by Bill Brown and Jeff Derksen. There was also a Plenary Panel featuring Jody Berland, Adriana Craciun, Michael Epp, and Rhona Richman Kenneally. During the opening night reception, which was held at the Ottawa Art Gallery, readings were given by authors Warren Cariou and Rita Wong.

Full poster available here.

Full programme available here and below.

Photos from the 2011 Symposium:

Material Cultures in Canadian and Transnational Contexts
May 6th- 8th 2011


Friday May 6th
9:00 am Glen Clever Room, Arts Building, 3rd Floor, University of Ottawa
Registration, coffee, snacks, & welcome
10:30 am – 12:00 pm Desmarais 1150
Keynote Speaker: Bill Brown (University of Chicago)
“Systems and Objects, Words and Things (The Matter of Modernism in the Work of Philip K. Dick)”
12:00 – 1:15 pm Lunch (Arts 509)
1:15 – 2:30 pm Panel Sessions

A1 – Desmarais 1150
Inuit Contexts

Chair: Carole Gerson

Pauline Wakeham (University of Western Ontario), “At the Intersection of Apology and Sovereignty: The Arctic Exile Monument Project as Territorial Reinscription”

Ian MacRae (Wilfrid Laurier University), “‘How could we imagine them’?: Shamanism, Structuralism, and the Zoomorphic Series in Dorset Carving”

Anne Whitelaw (Concordia University), “From the Gift Shop to the Permanent Collection: Art Gallery Women’s Societies and the Circulation of Inuit Art”

A2 – Arts 509
Materiality of Time & Memory

Chair: Lori Burns

Paul Huebener (McMaster University), “‘More Clocks than Bibles’: Why We Cannot Understand Canada without Reading Stories about Clocks”

Tanis MacDonald (Wilfrid Laurier University), “Night in a Box: Anne Carson’s Nox and the Materiality of Elegy”

Christa Zeller Thomas (University of Ottawa), “The End of Materiality/Matter/Mater: Maternal Absence, Material Insufficiencies, and Crises of Identity in 20th-Century Canadian Women’s Fiction”

A3 – Arts 318
Community and the Post-Human

Chair: Frans De Bruyn

Tobi Kozakewich (University of Ottawa), “Biotechnology and the End of the Individual in Salt Fish Girl and Oryx and Crake

Georg Drennig (University of Vienna), “Grey Squirrel in Wasabi Sauce: Stanley Park and The Politics of Food”

Anne Raine (University of Ottawa), “The World We Bring Forth with Others: Virtual Kinship and Material Natureculture in Richard Powers’s The Echo Maker

2:30 – 2:45 pm Break
2:45 – 4:00 pm Panel Sessions

B1 – Desmarais 1150
Poetry and Paperwork

Chair: Gerald Lynch

David Hickey (University of Western Ontario), “Ghost Works: The Collaborative Ephemera of JackPine Press”

Robert Stacey (University of Ottawa), “P.K. Page, Paperwork, and the Modern Office”

B2 – Arts 509

Chair: Kit Dobson

Julie Rak (University of Alberta), “Genre and Things: The Book Store in Canada”

Christine Evain and Simon Carolan (École Centrale de Nantes), “Of Books, Koobs, Blooks, and e-books: A Comparative Study of Recent Developments in France and Canada”

Thomas Barnes (University of Western Ontario), “‘Contagion of Paper’: Literature, Landfills, and the Ecology of Books”

B3 – Arts 318

Chair: Christa Zeller Thomas

Cynthia M. Morawski (University of Ottawa), “The Bricoleur’s Autumn Notebook: Materials of Meaning in Real Time Teaching Life”

Eric Freeze (Wabash College), “‘Unmasking the Iceman’: Web Surfing Simulacra”

Patricia Palulis (University of Ottawa), “The Paleography of a Material Event: Evocative (Re)collections from a Ragpicker and a Poet…”

4:00 – 4:15 pm Coffee Break
4:15 – 5:30 pm Panel Sessions

C1 – Desmarais 1150
Material Ecologies

Chair: Pamela McCallum

Nicole Shukin (University of Victoria), “Weather Conductors: Climate Crisis and Neo-Imperial Culture”

Tania Aguila-Way (University of Ottawa), “‘An endless waste the trucks of production grind to juice’: Dissipated Matter and National Memory in Daphne Marlatt’s Steveston

Rita Wong (Emily Carr University), “Waters as Potential Paths to Peace”

C2 – Arts 318
Inside Modernisms
Chair: Bethany Guenther

Shelley Boyd (Kwantlen Polytechnic University), “The Geranium in the Window: Potted Aspirations in Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Canadian Literature”

Jeffrey Douglas (McMaster University), “Rural Waste, Pastoral Space, and the Modernist Aesthetic Encounter”

Natalia Vesselova (University of Ottawa), “‘When the Wind and Hawk Encounter, What Remains to Keep’: Material Representations of the Ethereal in Leonard Cohen’s The Favourite Game

6:00 – 8:00 pm Reception, Ottawa Art Gallery, Arts Court, 2 Daly Ave.
Readings by Warren Cariou (University of Manitoba) and Rita Wong (Emily Carr University)
Saturday May 7th
(Saturday and Sunday Sessions All Located at the Lord Elgin Hotel)
Registration open all day
9:00 – 10:15 am Panel Sessions

D1 – Pearson Room

Chair: Jennifer Blair

Lori Burns (University of Ottawa), Marc Lafrance (Concordia University), and Tamar Dubuc (University of Ottawa), “Dynamic Subjectivities and New Media Technologies in Beyoncé’s ‘Videophone’ (Featuring Lady Gaga): Material Elements of Sound, Text, and Image”

Maude Lapierre (Université de Montréal), “Monsters, Bodies, and Ideology: Grotesque Resistance in Suzette Mayr’s Venous Hum

Bethany Guenther (University of Ottawa), “Invading Taste: Postcolonial Resistance and Recovery Through Furnishings, Food, and Wine in Shani Mootoo’s Cereus Blooms at Night and He Drown She in the Sea

D2 – Laurier Room
Materiality of the Text
Chair: Tanis MacDonald

Matthew Kennedy (University of Ottawa), “Materiality, The T.E. Lawrence Poems, and the Gwendolyn MacEwen Archive”

Ruth Panofsky (Ryerson University), “Anna Porter: A Life in Publishing”

Kit Dobson (Mount Royal University), “Producing the Words: Material Constraints and Escapes in Canadian Poetry”

10:15 – 10:30 am Coffee Break
10:30 – 11:45 am Panel Sessions

E1 – Laurier Room
Bodies that Shatter

Chair: Erin Kean

Lucia Lorenzi (University of British Columbia), “Lost & Found: Alternative Readings of the Objecthood of Vancouver’s Missing Women”

Meagan Dallimore (Simon Fraser University), “Invisible Weight: Diasporic Densities in Madeleine Thien’s Certainty

Ranbir Banwait (Simon Fraser University), “Of Biopolitical Objects: Epistemic Violence in Adele Wiseman’s Crackpot

E2 – Pearson Room
Performance and the Objects of Culture

Chair: Susan Birkwood

Manina Jones and Neal Ferris (University of Western Ontario), “Flint, Feather, and Other Material of Selves: The Poetry of Pauline Johnson in Cultural Context”

May Chew (Queen’s University), “Archeological Detritus and the Bulging Archive: Staging He Named Her Amber at the Art Gallery of Ontario”

Cecily Devereux (University of Alberta), “She’s Got Legs: Staging Mobility in Late Nineteenth-Century Erotic Dance”

11:45 am – 1:15 pm Lunch
1:15 – 2:30 pm Panel Sessions

F1 – Pearson Room

Chair: Janice Fiamengo

Carole Gerson (Simon Fraser University), “The Plaque’s the Thing: Patterns of Commemorating Canada’s Writers”

Jessa Alston-O’Connor (Concordia University), “Woodrow: Memory and Nostalgia at Play”

Joel Baetz (Trent University), “The Things of War: The Canadian War Memorials Collection, John Byam Shaw’s The Flag, and the Narratives of Canadian Modernism”

F2 – Laurier Room
Waste Materials

Chair: Tania Aguila-Way

Michael Sloane (University of Western Ontario), “Poetry, Garbage, Gift: Scrap Poetics in Contemporary North American Poetry”

Matthew Zantingh (McMaster University), “Returning Agency to Things: Consumerism, Material Culture, and Toxic Discourse in Rita Wong’s Forage

2:30 – 2:45 pm Coffee Break
2:45 – 4:00 Panel Sessions

G1 – Pearson Room
Media Matters

Chair: Pauline Wakeham

Mark Simpson (University of Alberta), “Obama’s Playlist: The Ends of Prosthetic Franchise at the CBC”

Andrew Burke (University of Winnipeg), “Phantoms and Fragments: Video, Memory, and Death By Popcorn

Kalli Paakspuu (University of Toronto), “Benjamin West’s Iroquoian World”

G2 – Laurier Room
Archiving Material Culture

Chair: Matthew Kennedy

Gail Edwards (Douglas College) and Judith Saltman (University of British Columbia), “The Materiality of Childhood Print Culture: Canadian Picturebooks”

Isabelle Robitaille (Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec), “From Paper to Leather: An Historical View of Binding in Québec”

Lucie Desjardins (Archives and Special Collections of the Morisset Library, University of Ottawa), “Preserving Our Cultural Heritage: A Reality Check”

4:00 – 4:15 pm Coffee Break
4:15 – 5:45 pm Keynote Speaker: Jeff Derksen (Simon Fraser University)
“‘Closer to a work of art than a simple material product’: A Material Poetics of the Urban”
7:30 pm Dinner: Métropolitain Brasserie (optional) 700 Sussex Drive
Sunday May 8th
9:30 – 11:30 am Plenary Panel
Chair: Tom Allen 

Jody Berland (York University), “The Work of the Beaver”

Adriana Craciun (University of California, Riverside), “The Franklin Relics and the Afterlives of Disaster”

Michael Epp (Trent University), “Grinning Things: Object Lessons in Violent Labour”

Rhona Richman Kenneally (Concordia University), “The Material Culture of the Domestic Foodscape: Design, Food, and Everyday Life”

11:30 am – 1:00 pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:15 pm Panel Sessions

H1 – Pearson Room
History, Text, and Image

Chair: Julie Rak

Gillian Roberts (University of Nottingham), “The Book of Negroes and The Book of Negroes: Textuality and Materiality”

Jade Ferguson (University of Guelph), “‘Group faking a lynching, Crossfield, Alberta c. 1908-1910’: Lynching, Boosterism, and Main Street Photography”

Candida Rifkind (University of Winnipeg), “Comics, Cardboard, and Canada: Seth’s George Sprott (1984-1975)

H2 – Laurier Room
Chair: Tobi Kozakewich

Alison Calder (University of Manitoba), “Maxims and Contraries: A Poetry and Sweater Project”

Susan Birkwood (Carleton University), “Is It Still a Cinch? The Circulation of Clothing and Accessories across Geographical and Social Boundaries in Guy Vanderhaeghe’s The Last Crossing

Jolene Armstrong (Athabasca University), “‘To preserve something of their old beauty’: Yellow Boots as Symbol of Ethnicity and Diversity in Vera Lysenko’s Novel, Yellow Boots

2:15 – 3:30 pm Panel Sessions

I1 – Pearson Room
Materiality of Art
Chair: Jade Ferguson

Pamela McCallum (University of Calgary), “Something/Nothing”: Dominique Blain’s Representation of Materiality”

Jakub Zdebik (University of Ottawa), “Furniture and Fixture in an Interior: The Bed, the Stove, and the Table as Images in Thought”

Hannah McGregor (University of Guelph), “The Beauty of Humanity Movement as Souvenir-Literature”

I2 – Laurier Room
Urban Architectures

Chair: Robert Stacey

D.M.R. Bentley (University of Western Ontario), “Because It’s Gone: Chorley Park, Anne Michaels’s Fugitive Pieces, and the Absence and Presence of the Past in the ‘Archive Architectural’”

Kim Minkus (Simon Fraser University), “Archive, City, Interstice: The Page as Feminist Social Site in Lisa Robertson’s Occasional Work and Seven Walks from the Office for Soft Architecture