Join us for a conversation with Jael Richardson, Ian Williams, and Andrea Davis about their personal journeys as Black writers and professionals in Canadian literature, and explore how Black writers are shaping the future of Canadian literature by working at the crossroads of identity, culture, and creativity.
This event offers an opportunity for Black Students with an interest in literature and literary professions, including creative writing, journalism, publishing, and academia, to learn from experts as they forge their own future in Canadian literature and the future of Canadian literature itself.
Dr. Andrea Davis
Dr. Andrea A. Davis is an associate professor in Black Cultures of the Americas in the Department of Humanities at York University. She is currently Special Advisor on the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies’ Anti-Black Racism Strategies. She holds cross-appointments in the graduate programs in English; Interdisciplinary Studies; Gender, Feminist and Women’s Studies; and Social and Political Thought. Her research focuses on the literary productions of Black women in the Americas. She is particularly interested in the intersections of the literatures of the Caribbean, the United States and Canada and her work encourages an intertextual cross-cultural dialogue about Black women's experiences in diaspora.
She has published widely in journals such as Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture, and Social Justice; Canadian Literature; Caribbean Review of Gender Studies; Journal of Canadian Studies; and Topia: Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies. She is the author of the forthcoming book Horizon, Sea, Sound: A Cultural Critique of the Nation (Northwestern UP).
Jael Richardson is the author of The Stone Thrower, a book columnist on CBC’s q and the founder and Executive Director for the Festival of Literary Diversity (FOLD) in Brampton, Ontario. Her debut novel, Gutter Child is a dystopian tale of courage and resilience and arrived January 2021 with HarperCollins Canada.
Ian Williams is the author of the novel Reproduction, the winner of the 2019 Scotiabank Giller Prize; Personals, which was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize and the Robert Kroetsch Poetry Book Award; Not Anyone’s Anything, winner of the Danuta Gleed Literary Award for the best first collection of short fiction in Canada, and You Know Who You Are, a finalist for the ReLit Prize for poetry. In 2020 he published his latest poetry collection, Word Problems. In fall 2021 he will release Disorientation: The Experience of Being Black in the World.
Williams is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Toronto. He completed his doctorate in English there under George Elliott Clarke. He spent four years teaching poetry in the Creative Writing Department at the University of British Columbia. In 2014-2015 he was the Writer-in-Residence for the University of Calgary's Distinguished Writers Program. He has held fellowships or residencies from Vermont Studio Center, the Banff Center, Cave Canem, and the National Humanities Center. Born in Trinidad, Williams grew up in Brampton, Ontario, and has worked in Massachusetts and Ontario.Website
Catherine Grant is a first-year Canadian History PhD student. She wrote her MA at York University on The Darkside of the Canadian Dream: A History of Housing Discrimination in Toronto 1961-1977. She is currently working on a comparative analysis of Jamaican community organizing and culture in Birmingham, England, and Toronto. Catherine likes to write poetry that grapples with her diasporic identity. Reading Black Canadian Literature as a youth inspired her to become a historian.