Aruna Srivastava

Research clusters

Department of English

Research in the Department of English

We are a research-intensive community. Our scholars engage in broad academic and creative activity.

Our work spans diverse areas, methods and models. We work across historical periods and national and geographical boundaries. We surpass theoretical methodologies and forms of media.

We share our research and creative work in peer-reviewed books and journals. Performances and readings. Print and digital formats. And presentations at national and international conferences.

We have a well-established tradition of engaging our local and national communities through:

  • public talks and broadcasts

  • newspaper and magazine writing

  • and other interventions

Regular external funding supports our research and creative activities.

    Creative Writing

    Creative Writing has been a hallmark of our department since early in our history. We have offered creative writing:

    • At the undergraduate level since 1974
    • As a thesis option in our MA program since 1987
    • In our PhD program since 1990

    Our faculty and students earn national and international acclaim. They actively contribute to the Calgary and Canadian arts communities.

    Learn more about creative writing at UCalgary

    Texts and technologies

    Scholars in our department study how texts are transformed by the technologies they inhabit, from the codex to the computer.

    We study the histories of texts’ material conditions of production and reception. We curate exhibits and edit texts for publication. And we study and teach letterpress technologies for disseminating texts.

    Our research in traditional British literature examines and challenges period formation from the medieval to Modernism.

    And our focus on historical texts extends to Canadian, American and Transatlantic as well as Transnational literatures.

    We also study texts’ material histories from medieval manuscripts to printed books. Our digital humanists design databases, produce and theorize digital editions, and use machines to treat texts as data for visualizations. We collaborate with our colleagues in libraries and archives, and in fields from computer science to museum and media studies. 

    Medieval and Early Modern Literatures Faculty

    Maria Zytaruk

    Eighteenth-Century Literatures faculty

    Nineteenth-Century Literatures faculty

    Twentieth-Century Literatures faculty

    Donna Coates

    Christian Olbey

    Book History, Print Culture, and the Digital Humanities faculty

    Our research in popular literatures and genres spans periods, media, and boundaries.

    Faculty members research, teach, and train graduate students in areas such as:

    • comics studies (Bart Beaty),

    • children’s and young adult literature (Derritt Mason),

    • speculative fiction (Stefania Forlini, Anthony Camara, L.Rain Prud'homme-Cranford)

    • popular women’s writing (Karen Bourrier, Faye Halpern, David Sigler).

    We offer courses in comics and graphic novels, science fiction and fantasy, and children’s and young adult literature. Our senior-level courses provide opportunities for specialized study at an advanced level.

    Our graduate program offers courses on popular women writers, comics studies, and other forms of popular literature.

    On the UCalgary campus, we have internationally-recognized library resources in speculative fiction (the Bob Gibson collection) and comics (the George Morley Collection).

    Global literatures and theory

    An early area of specialization in the department was what was once called Commonwealth literature.

    We have housed the quarterly journal ARIEL (A Review of International English Literature) since 1970. ARIEL has readers and subscribers in more than 50 countries.

    ARIEL continues to be a leading field journal, dedicated to the study of new and established literatures in English around the world. The journal gives special attention to issues of diaspora and globalization.

    Global Literatures and Theory remains a significant area of research strength in our department. Research in this area intersects with a wide range of theoretical and critical approaches and crosses periods and national and geographical boundaries.

    Critical and literary theory

    Our department has a long history of research strength in critical and literary theory, an area into which we have successfully recruited graduate students for many years. A large concentration of our faculty members make research contributions in this field.

    Canadian literature

    A longstanding research area in our department. Our research in Canadian literature is complemented by and integrated with the significant collection of Canadian material in the university’s Special Collections and Archives, including the papers of Nobel laureate Alice Munro.

    Research contributions in this area include:

    • work in ecocritical and environmental studies

    • archival research, including exploration documents and narratives

    • poetics

    • literary history

    • gender studies

    • postcolonial and indigenous studies

    • race and identity.

    UCalgary is an important centre of Canadian studies, attracting graduate students from across Canada and abroad.

    There is also a fertile connection with our creative writing program, including with Writers-in-Residence brought in by the Calgary Distinguished Writers Program.

    Scholarship of teaching and learning

    Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) is an area of research strength supported by individual projects as well as by grants from and collaborations with the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning.