Dates:  6-8 July 2017

Symposium Organizers: K. S. Whetter, Paul Chafe, Alexander MacLeod, Thomas Hodd


Registration will be on site, in the lobby of the Beveridge Arts Centre, Acadia University, corner of Main St and Highland Ave. Registration fee for all speakers except students is $75. Students, even those speaking, are free. Payment in cash would be most appreciated. Receipts will be provided. Credit card payment is NOT an option. It would be most helpful if people who are not speaking but planning to attend would notify

If any conference delegates, speakers or otherwise, have any special dietary requirements, they are likewise asked to advise

We look forward to welcoming you soon.


The only university residence we have available is Cutten House. There are a combination of single and double rooms in the building, and all rooms have either one or two single beds. None of these rooms have en-suite washrooms. Instead, there are individual washrooms (rather than dorm style) with 1 for every 3-4 rooms. The residence rooms are supplied with bed linens, a towel and facecloth, small soap and a plastic cup.  The cost for this residence is $64 per night for a single room or $95 per night for a double ($47.50 p/p).

Book directly through Acadia at  If anyone wants to phone in their request, please call accommodations at 1-800-542-8425

For those of you desiring a more upscale bed, we have a number of rooms reserved for conference delegates at the Old Orchard Inn, which is just off the highway on the way into Wolfville and a short (five-minute) drive to campus, and the Blomidon Inn on the Main Street, about a twenty-minute walk to campus. Rooms are reserved at a special rate under the name “Raddall Symposium.” Please contact the inns directly:

For the Blomidon, email Michael at and ask for the Raddall Symposium rate.

For the Old Orchard Inn, phone 902-542-5751 (Toll Free: 800-561-8090); Again, you will need to request the Raddall Symposium rate.

Keynote Lectures and Author Readings are listed on the poster

Programme details follow.

Funding by (and thanks to) the Thomas H. Raddall Symposium Fund, Acadia English & Theatre Department

Picture Courtesy of Ron Hayes


Thomas H. Raddall O.C. was born in England in 1903 and moved to Nova Scotia ten years later when his father was posted to Halifax. He worked as a wireless operator and then as a bookkeeper and became a full-time writer in 1938. His 25 books, 50 articles and more than 70 short stories, and his work for radio and television, gave him an important place amongst Atlantic Canada writers. He received the Governor General's awards for The Pied Piper of Dipper Creek (1944), Halifax: Warden of the North (1948), and The Path of Destiny: Canada from the British Conquest to Home Rule (1957). He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1953, and became an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1970.

The conference was established by Acadia University in 1989 in honour of Thomas H. Raddall to recognise his contribution to Atlantic Canada history and literature. The symposium is held on an occasional basis at Acadia University, and brings together outstanding writers and scholars in the field of Atlantic literature.

Location:   Beveridge Arts Centre (BAC) corner of Main St. & Highland Ave., Wolfville

Enter by the main doors. The Acadia Art Gallery is to your right once you’ve entered the foyer, and Room 132, where all academic sessions will be held, is the first room on the left, across from the gallery. There is a second door at the back, through the glass doors to the left and up the short flight of stairs.

Final Schedule: (printable version)

Thursday 6 July

12:00-1:00pm: Conference Registration

1:00-2:30: Plenary Presentation: Dr. David Creelman (University of New Brunswick):
Chair:  Alexander MacLeod (Saint Mary's)

"At the level of the sentence:" Five Persuasive Critical Statements in Atlantic Canadian Literary Studies

2:30-2:45: Break:  BAC137

2:45-4:15 Session One: Herb Wyile, the Folk Paradigm, and the Future of Atlantic Canada Studies
Chair:  KevinWhetter (Acadia)

Paul Chafe (Ryerson), “‘Bad as a zoo, if you think about it’: Playing the Part in Edward Riche’s Today I Learned It Was You.”
Alexander MacLeod (Saint Mary’s), “‘Let’s say you’re a tough guy’: Performing and Reforming Maritime Masculinity in Kris Berten’s Bad Things Happen.”
Peter Thompson (Carleton), “‘We’ll send you a postcard from Fort McMoney’: Work as Liminal Space in Just Passing Through, The Underwater Welder and ‘Ducks.’”

4:15-4:30: Break

4:30-6:00: Session Two: People/Place/Poetry
Chair: Thomas Hodd (Moncton
Erin Wunker (Acadia) “Water as Commons in Sue Goyette’s Ocean
Billy Johnson (Toronto) “Impressions Sincerely Given: Publishing Rita Joe’s Poetics of Continuity”
Blythe Hutchcroft (McGill) “‘Silence Like an Overwhelming Noise’: Edges and Ethics in Don McKay’s Writing”

6:00: Informal Collective Supper: probably Troy Restaurant

Friday 7 July
8:30-9:15: Conference Registration (and morning coffee)
Continental Breakfast with Coffee and Tea will be available behind BAC 132 from 08:15 am

9:15-10:45: Session Three: Neoliberal Selves
Chair:  Cynthia Sugars (Ottawa)

Hannah Wyile (Ottawa) “Contesting Neoliberal Reconciliation”
Christopher J. Armstrong (Chukyo) “Ken of Tim Hortons: Reading White Masculinity Under Neoliberal Governance”
Adam Beardsworth (Grenfell) “The Neoliberal Muse: Self-invention and Invented Selves in Joel Thomas Hynes and Michael Winter”

10:45-11:00: Break

11:00-12:30: Session Four: Look at it this way…
Chair:  Sue Fisher (New Brunswick)

Helene Staveley (Memorial) “Staging the Atlantic Canadian ‘Cure’: Sharon Pollock’s Doc (1986) and Robert Chafe’s Tempting Providence (2004)”
Teya Rosenberg (Texas State) “The Traditional and the Transnational: Perspective, Proportion, and Scale in the Newfoundland Jack Books”
Tom Halford (Memorial) “Principles to Sort By: Surveillance and the Police in David Adams Richards’s Principles to Live By

12:30-2:00: Lunch (in the hallway behind BAC 132)

2:00-3:00: Session Five: The Fiction of Families
Chair:  Paul Chafe (Ryerson)

Adam Beardsworth (Grenfell), “The Neoliberal Muse: Self-invention and Invented Selves in Joel Thomas Hynes and Michael Winter”
Gemma Marr (Carleton) “‘We are speaking our secret family language’: Reconfiguring the Heteronormative Family in Come, Thou Tortoise

3:00-3:15 Break (refreshments in BAC 137)

3:15-4:45: Session Six: Writing Region
Chair: Tony Tremblay (St. Thomas)
Hannah Nicholls (Saint Mary’s) “‘All cunt and no Conscience’: Female Sexuality and Misogyny in George Elliott Clarke’s The Motorcyclist
David Hickey (PEI) “Installing a Windfarm in a Poem: Field Reports in Charles G.D. Roberts’ ‘The Tantramar Revisited’”
Thomas Hodd (Moncton) “David Walker: New Brunswick’s Forgotten Novelist”

4:45-6:45: Supper  (Fend and Forage Supper:  nothing is booked.   A partial list of local restaurants appears below:

Presentation of The Herb Wyile Prize in Canadian Literature

7:00-8:30 Reading. Lisa Moore and Edward Riche

A reception accompanies the award and the readings.

Saturday 8 July

9:00-10:30: Session Seven: Global/Localisms
Chair:  David Creelman
Mandy Rowsell (Memorial) “‘And the Residents of Bareneed Returned to the Sea’: Kenneth Harvey’s The Town that Forgot How to Breathe and the Rejection of Globalization in the 21st Century Newfoundland Novel”
Shane Neilson (McMaster) “Frame-Changer: Ridding the Maritimes of Regionalism (Poetry Edition) From the Place Up”
Zachary Brewer (Calgary) “All the Carpetbagging Easterners: Meditations on Globalisation in the Songs of Stan Rogers”

10:30-10:45: Break:  BAC Room 137

10:45-12:15: Session Eight: HomeWork:
Chair: Peter Thompson (Carleton)
Bethany Daigle (New Brunswick) “Spectres of Pictou County: Socio-Economic Hauntings in Leo McKay Jr.'s Twenty-Six
Shoshannah Ganz (Grenfell) “Exploitation or Unemployment: Atlantic Literary Explorations of the Mining Industry”
Davita DesRoches  (McGill) “Ghost Town: Spectral Narratives as Resistance in Michael Crummey’s Sweetland

12:15-1:30: Lunch:  BAC 137

1:30-2:45: Session Nine: Look at this Place
Chair:  Alexander MacLeod (Saint Mary's)
Yoko Araki (Keiwa) “A Response from Another ‘Eastern Edge’: Using Waterfront Views in an English Classroom in Japan”
Cynthia Sugars (Ottawa) and Paul Keen (Carleton) “Making Nova Scotia Great Again: Revisiting Thomas McCulloch’s The Nature and Uses of a Liberal Education Illustrated
Tony Tremblay (St. Thomas) “Surveying and Electrifying the Field: Atlantic Canada Studies in 2017”

2:45-3:00: Refreshment Break:  BAC 137

3:00-4:30: Reading. Sue Goyette and George Elliott Clark

Saturday Evening:
The Herb Wyile Invitational, Recreational, Celebrational Softball Extravaganza


Dining Options

Those of you staying in residence are able to breakfast at Wheelock Dining Hall. Guests pay cash at the door at Wheelock for breakfast.  The price is $8.47 + tax.

A light breakfast will also be available Friday morning at the conference site in BAC.

Coffee or tea, water, and lunches will be provided Friday and Saturday. There is also a Thursday afternoon coffee, tea, and light snack.

The Thursday Dinner should be at Troy Restaurant, which is out the main BAC entrance, across Main St and through the clock park: look for the giant wooden horse!

For other meals, Wolfville offers a variety of dining experiences suiting all needs:

The Library Pub (Main St) offers an excellent range of local craft beer, a few imports, and a small menu ranging from fishcakes to the best burger in town.

Paddy’s Pub and Rosie’s Restaurant (Main St) is as it says. Their menu is reasonably priced and reasonably wide-ranging, and they make their own beer.

The Naked Crepe, further down on Main St, styles itself ‘an exciting new Bistro Creperie’. They offer quite a range of crepes, including gluten free and vegetarian.

Danji Restaurant (Elm St: just down from the Library, in front of Troy) offers Asian and Korean, including vegetarian and vegan.

La Torta Woodfired Pizzeria and Craft Beer (go down Main St to the Bank of Montreal, and turn left down the side street). Again, the fare is as advertised.

Dining Options Continued

If you have a car, you might drive 8 minutes out of town (going past the university, away from the downtown core) to the traffic light and Irving Station. Turn RIGHT and down the hill and across the dykes to two of Port Williams’ finer establishments:

The Noodle Guy, at the end of the bridge, offers excellent artisan (and vegetarian) pasta, a range of desserts, and local beer, wine, and other beverages.

Alternatively, turn right at the Noodle Guy and continue to the end of the street and you are at the Port Pub: a small but excellent menu, a great view, and a good range of craft beer made on-site.


Our thanks to:

General funding for the conference was generously provided by the Raddall Family for the purposes of a symposium in honour of Thomas H. Raddall. Thanks also to Dr Jessica Slights, Head, Department of English and Theatre, Acadia University.

Friday’s reception occurs with the generous support of the Atlantic Canada Studies Program at Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, and the Gorsebrook Research Institute.

For conference elf-service we are most grateful to Allie Fournier and Meaghan Smith, formerly of the Department of English and Theatre, Acadia University.

For considerable general assistance, including name tags and numerous web updates, we owe a tremendous debt to Christine Kendrick, Department of English and Theatre. Printing assistance from Janice Worthylake, History and Classics.

Room bookings, food, and the reception all benefitted from the assistance of Colleen Swail, Bob Caissie, Janet Ross, and Tammy Gregory.