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date: 23 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

“Canadian Literature,” understood as the non-occasional study of Canadian writing by both scholars and students, was an academic institutional creation of the 1960s and early 1970s. Originally homogenous in conception, idealistically nationalist and bilingual, and populist in its sense of audience, it has been variously transformed by encounters with literary theory, postmodernism, multiculturalism, cultural studies, and postcolonial theory. Once troubled mainly by Northrop Frye’s question of how its texts could be both Canadian and literary, the field now grapples with questions of how it can itself be at once transnational, multicultural, decolonizing, institutionally self-aware, global, still literary, and still Canadian.

Keywords: literary theory, Northrop Frye, postmodernism, multiculturalism, cultural studies, postcolonial theory

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