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ENGL 222 Borders, Ecocriticism Notes Feb 25

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University of British Columbia
ENGL 222
Duffy Roberts

February 25, 2013 ENGL 222 – Canadian Literature PIE #2 due Friday, March 1 – close read  Globe and Mail – Vancouverism -> rest of world wants our specific model of densification, mixed use residence o Article claims rest of Canada should want this too, because it’s successful o Vancouver as a disseminated idea Next week’s reading: “Beggar’s Garden” – short story, PDF (download) on Vista “Borders” by Thomas King  3 weeks ago we talked about: o Trickster  A tricky story  Trickster figures o Irony  Canadian irony  Trickster Discourse worksheet o Discourse: words with power (jargon, language) – very specific language one needs to be trained into  Stories worldview  Uses specific stories  For instance, King has created a kids’ story where Coyote comes to North America to learn baseball o The Trickster Shift  How do tricksters shift our impression of things?  Tricky way of understanding our relationship to other people / other cultures / relationship to place o Characters that exist to dissemble what we already knew about a place  “Borders” - Family that’s stuck in between a border  Borders are not just lines  Question what national affiliation means / is, how do we get our identities from being nationalistic figures, what does it mean to be Canadian, what happens in the process of examining our identity inside these countries  News as only viable entity in our country that exposes the fact of the ridiculousness that is that story? (The ridiculousness of keeping a family at the border if they refuse to announce their nationality)  Irony worksheet o Canadian irony – self-deprecating on our value – not American  Canadians have a humour about their identity  Like Molson-Canadian ads o Dramatic device – saying one thing and meaning another  Communicating in that sort of “soft” way  Dissemble  Worksheet – positions irony against sarcasm, irony is more gentle – about chiding, more self-deprecating  What they’re thinking / saying is not quite accurate o Way that Canada deals with conflict – gentle irony  Criticism through an ironic mode (not violent) – peaceful, telling jokes about  This is the kind of mode that “Borders” enacts  Ideas
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