photo of stacks (lower floor)

Canadian Literature & Poetry
in English

First Nations


Read, Listen, Tell: Indigenous Stories from Turtle Island McCall, Sophie, et al., editors A range of Indigenous stories from across Turtle Island (North America): short fiction, narratives, illustrated stories, and personal essays. This collection explores core concepts in Indigenous literary expression, such as the relations between land, language, and community.
PR 9185.6 .I53 R43 2017 Stacks
From Oral to Written: A Celebration of Indigenous Literature in Canada, 1980–2010 Highway, Tomson A study of Native literature published in Canada between 1980 and 2010, written in multiple Aboriginal languages, in French, and in English by the members of the Haida Nation on Haida Gwaii to the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island.
PR 9188.2 .I54 H54 2017 Stacks
Ákaitsinikssiisti: Blackfoot Stories of Old Genee, Piitáákii Inge, et al., editors Eight Blackfoot stories told by Lena Russell, a fluent speaker of Blackfoot from the Kainai (Blood) reserve in southern Alberta.
PM 2344 .A2 R87 2014 Stacks
Inuit Stories of Being and Rebirth: Gender, Shamanism, and the Third Sex Saladin, d’Anglure Bernard An in-depth, paragraph-by-paragraph analysis of stories on womb memories, birth, namesaking, and reincarnation.
Available Online E99 .E7 S23513 2018 Stacks
Native Poetry in Canada: A Contemporary Anthology Armstrong, Jeannette C., and Lalage Grauer, editors Selection of poems from both critically-acclaimed poets and poets whose work has not previously been published. Represents a record of Native cultural revival as it emerged from the 1960s to 2000 as portrayed in the works of Lee Maracle, Rita Joe, Wayne Keon and many others.
PR 9195.35 .I5 N36 2001 Stacks
Indian Act: Residential School Plays St. Bernard, Donna-Michelle, editor A collection of works by Indigenous playwrights Drew Hayden Taylor, Tara Beagan, Curtis Peeteetuce, Yvette Nolan, and more. Seven plays by contemporary Indigenous playwrights cover the broad scope of residential school experiences.
PR 9196.7 .I53 I55 2018 Stacks
Honouring the Strength of Indian Women: Plays, Stories, Poetry Manuel, Vera, and Coupal, Michelle, et al., editors This critical edition delivers a comprehensive collection of the works of Ktunaxa-Secwepemc writer and educator Vera Manuel, daughter of prominent Indigenous leaders Marceline Paul and George Manuel. A vibrant force in the burgeoning Indigenous theatre scene, Manuel was at the forefront of residential school writing and did groundbreaking work as a dramatherapist and healer. Long before mainstream Canada understood and discussed the impact and devastating legacy of the residential schools, Manuel wrote about it as part of her personal and community healing.
PR 9199.3 .M288 2019 Stacks
My Home as I Remember Maracle, Lee, and Sandra Laronde, editors An edited anthology comprising poetry, short stories, and artwork created by First Nations, Inuit and Métis women across Canada and the United States, including contributions from New Zealand and Mexico.
Kisiskâciwan: Indigenous Voices from Where the River Flows Swiftly Archibald-Barber, Jesse Rae, editor Rich oral narratives from Cree, Saulteaux, Nakoda, Dakota, Dene, and Metis cultures; early writings from Cree missionaries; speeches and letters by Treaty Chiefs; stories from elders; archival discoveries; and contemporary literary works in all genres. Historically and culturally comprehensive, voices include Big Bear, Thunderchild, Louis Riel, Gabriel Dumont, Edward Ahenakew, Maria Campbell, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Rita Bouvier, Harold Johnson, Gregory Scofield, Warren Cariou, Louise Halfe, and many more.
Available Online PR 9194.5 .I5 K57 2018 Stacks
Pursued by a Bear: Talks, Monologues, and Tales Moses, Daniel D. Collection of essays about First Nations Canadian playwrights and authors, which examines how Native folklore contributes to the Canadian collective memory.
PR 9188.2 .I54 M67 2005 Stacks
Sexing the Maple: A Canadian Sourcebook Dickinson, Peter, and Richard Cavell, editors A sourcebook that raises issues of nationalism and sexuality in Canada through a rich and diverse selection of fiction, poetry, criticism, and history. The collection considers topics as wide-ranging as First Nations sexuality, censorship, assisted reproduction, and religion. Literary works by Alice Munro, Jane Rule, Timothy Findley, Leonard Cohen, Irving Layton, Lynn Crosbie, Michael Turner, and many others are included.
HQ 18 .C2 S395 2006 Stacks

Encyclopedias, Dictionaries, and Handbooks

Native North American Literature: Biographical and Critical Information on Native Writers and Orators from the United States and Canada from Historical Times to the Present Witalec, Janet et al., editors Coverage of both historical and contemporary Canadian First Nations writers and poets: Beth Brant, Maria Campbell, Peter Blue Cloud, Tomson Highway, Basil H. Johnston, E. Pauline Johnson, Peter Jones, Lee Maracle, Thomas King, Markoosie, Beatrice Culleton Monsier, Daniel David Moses. An entry for each author and poet has biographical material, list of awards, summaries of the major works, criticism (including reprints of scholarly and popular reviews).
PS 508 .I5 N38 1994 Reference
Five-Part Invention: A History of Literary History in Canada Blodgett, E.D. Composed of five parts: English Canada, French Canada, First Nations communities, Inuit communities, and immigrant communities.
Available Online PR 9185.2 .B62 2003 Reference


Ethnic and Native Canadian Literature: A Bibliography Miska, John An older book (published in 1990), but it remains an excellent resource for locating poetry, fiction, and drama authored by First-Nations authors.
Z 1376 .E87 M57 1990 Reference
Indian-Inuit Authors: An Annotated Bibliography National Library of Canada Summary of the contributions of northern writers to 1972 who produced texts in various topics, from literary to political: books, anthologies, articles, conferences, reports, poetry and songs, studies, theses, and periodicals.
Z 1365 .O7 Reference


Native North American Literature: Biographical and Critical Information on Native Writers and Orators from the United States and Canada from Historical Times to the Present Witalec, Janet et al., editors Part I, “Native American Oral Literatures,” examines different aspects of oral literatures, such as oratory, the trickster, dreams and songs, and revitalization movements. Part II, “The Historical Emergence of Native American Writing,” is federal government policy, autobiography, women’s autobiography, and humor. Part III, “A Native American Renaissance: 1967 to the Present,” studies critical responses to Native American literature, approaches to teaching, the literature of Canada, fiction, theatre, and the depiction of Native characters in Anglo-American literature.
PS 508 .I5 N38 1994 Reference

Digital Collections

Canadiana Online: Monographs Collection Digitized texts of rare books published in fourteen different Indigenous languages, including Ojibway, Cree, and Mohawk, among others.
Digital Archive Database Métis historical documents, genealogical information, Hudson’s Bay Company records, Church missionary records, and personal Métis accounts. The digital collection is a result of collaboration between scholas Brenda Macdougall and Nicole St-Onge (University of Ottawa), Michael Evans (University of British Columbia Okanagan), Chris Andersen (University of Alberta), and Ramon Lawrence (University of British Columbia).
Frontier Life: Borderlands, Settlement & Colonial Encounters A digital collection containing documents associated with the existence and the consequences on the various frontiers that arose from the movements of Europeans to North America (as well as Africa and Australasia). Primary sources represented in the collection are memoirs, speeches, books, pamphlets, and others from the Hudson’s Bay Company Archives Library and other repositories.
The Virtual Museum of Métis History and Culture Chronicles traditional Métis history and culture on the Internet and contains a wealth of primary documents—oral history interviews, photographs and various archival documents—in visual, audio and video files. The digital collection was created by the Gabriel Dumont Institute of Native Studies and Applied Research.
American Indian Newspapers A primary source collection of print journalism from Indigenous peoples of the United States and Canada dating from 1828 to 2016. Items include national periodicals, local community news, student publications, and bilingual and Indigenous-language editions in Hawaiian, Cherokee and Navajo languages and others. The bulk of titles were founded in the 1970s. Topics covered include the self-determination era and American Indian Movement, education, local news coverage, environmentalism, land rights and cultural representation from an Indigenous perspective. Many titles are digitized in large runs over many decades allowing for longitudinal research. Also included are a photo feature gallery and a series of essays and video interviews..

History, Literary Interpretation & Criticism

Looking at the Words of Our People: First Nations Analysis of Literature Armstrong, Jeannette, compiler The first collection in Canada of literary analysis on Native Literature written by First-Nations scholars. The book includes reviews, poetry analysis, overviews of Native literatures. The contributors are Marilyn Dumont and Kimberly Blaeser, among other academics.
PR 9188.2 .I5 L66 1993 Stacks

(Ad)dressing Our Words: Aboriginal Perspectives on Aboriginal Literatures Ruffo, Armand G., editor A critical anthology of essays by Aboriginal academics provides an in-depth analysis of literature by Aboriginal authors. The contributors study the works of their peers with an insightful understanding of the significance of contemporary literature within Aboriginal cultural paradigms.
PS 8089.5 .I6 A32 2001 Stacks
The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative King, Thomas
PR 9199.3 .K44177 T77 2003 Stacks
Introduction to Indigenous Literary Criticism in Canada Macfarlane, Heather and Armand Garnet Ruffo, editors The essays in this volume explore issues that mark the study of Indigenous literature: appropriation of voice, stereotyping, traditional knowledge, language, land, spirituality, orality, colonialism, post-colonialism, gender, hybridity, authenticity, resistance, and ethical scholarship.
PR 9194.5 .I5 I58 2015 Stacks
Why Indigenous Literatures Matter Justice, Daniel Heath Part survey of the field of indigenous literary studies, part cultural history, and part literary polemic, this book asserts the vital significance of literary expression to the political, creative, and intellectual efforts of indigenous peoples today.
PS 153 .I52 J878 2018 Stacks
Learn, Teach, Challenge: Approaching Indigenous Literatures Reder, Deanna and Linda M. Morra, editors Organized into five subject areas: Position, the necessity of considering where you come from and who you are; Imagining Beyond Images and Myths, a history and critique of circulating images of Indigenousness; Debating Indigenous Literary Approaches; Contemporary Concerns, a consideration of relevant issues; and finally Classroom Considerations, pedagogical concerns particular to the field. Each section is introduced by an essay that orients the reader and provides ideological context.
Available Online PR 9188.2 .I54 L43 2016 Stacks
Activating the Heart Storytelling, Knowledge Sharing, and Relationship Christensen, Julia, et al., editors An exploration of storytelling as a tool for knowledge production and sharing to build new connections between people and their histories, environments, and cultural geographies. The collection pays particular attention to the significance of storytelling in Indigenous knowledge frameworks and extends into other ways of knowing in works where scholars have embraced narrative and story as a part of their research approach.
P 302.7 .A28 2018 Stacks
Divided Highways: Road Narrative and Nationhood in Canada Macfarlane, Heather Establishes the existence of a road trip genre in the literatures of Canada, examining works by a variety of Anglophone, Québécois and Indigenous writers, including Gilles Archambault, Jeannette Armstrong, Jill Frayne, Tomson Highway, Linda Hogan, Scott Gardiner, Claude Jasmin, Robert Kroetsch, Lee Maracle, Jacques Poulin, Aritha van Herk and Paul Villeneuve.
PR 9185.5 .T73 M33 2019 Stacks
Performing Turtle Island: Indigenous Theatre on the World Stage Archibald-Barber, Jesse Rae, et al., editors This book analyzes theatre as a tool for community engagement, education, and resistance, and examines how communities in turn influence the construction of Indigenous identities through theatre.
PN 2301 .P47 2019 Stacks
The Oxford Handbook of Canadian Literature Sugars, Cynthia, editor A comprehensive, authoritative guide to many different genres, topics, and aspects of Canadian literary history, including the influence of literature on the Canadian national identity, authorship, postcolonialism, short story, drama, poetry, Indigenous literatures, women’s writing, children’s literature, gay and lesbian literature, creative work from the Confederation period, regional fiction, and minority writers.
PR 9180.2 .O95 2016 Stacks
Canadian Literature Hammill, Faye Critical study of Canadian literature, placing internationally successful anglophone Canadian authors in the context of their national literary history. While the focus of the book is on twentieth-century and contemporary writing, it also charts the historical development of Canadian literature and discusses important eighteenth- and nineteenth-century authors. The chapters focus on four central topics in Canadian culture: ethnicity, race, colonization; wildernesses, cities, regions; desire; and histories and stories. Authors chosen for close analysis include Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Alice Munro, Leonard Cohen, Thomas King and Carol Shields.
PR 9189.6 .H36 2007 Stacks
The Cambridge Companion to Canadian Literature Kröller, Eva-Marie A comprehensive introduction to major writers, genres and topics in Canadian literature: fiction, drama, and poetry, Aboriginal writing, autobiography, literary criticism, writing by women, urban writing, nature-writing, exploration and travel-writing, and short fiction.
Available Online PR 9184.3 .C34 2004 Stacks
The Cambridge History of Canadian Literature Howells, Coral A, and Eva-Marie Kröller, editors A complete English-language history of Canadian writing in English and French from its beginnings, with an emphasis on literary, poetic, and dramatic works published since the 1960s. Analyzes the emergence of multicultural and Indigenous writing, popular literature, nature-writing, life-writing, and the interaction of anglophone and francophone cultures throughout Canadian history.
Available Online PR 9184.6 .C26 2009 Stacks
Literary Land Claims: The “Indian Land Question” from Pontiac’s War to Attawapiskat Fee, Margery Examines John Richardson’s novels about Pontiacs War and the War of 1812 that document the breaking of British promises to Indigenous nations.
Available Online PR 9185.6 .I53 F43 2015 Stacks
Canadian Literature at the Crossroads of Language and Culture: Selected Essays by Barbara Godard, 1987–2005 Godard, Barbara Godard is recognized as one of the most influential scholars in the area of Canadian studies. This anthology of her collected essays includes “The Politics of Representation: Some Native Canadian Women Writers,” first published in 1990.
PR 9193.5 .G63 2008 Stacks
The Homing Place: Indigenous and Settler Literary Legacies of the Atlantic Bryant, Rachel Bryant explores how colonized and Indigenous environments occupy the same given geographical coordinates even while existing in distinct epistemological worlds through the analysis of a wide range of northeastern texts, including Puritan captivity narratives, Wabanaki wampum belts, and contemporary Innu poetry.
PR 9184.3 .B79 2017 Stacks
Cultural Identities in Canadian Literature Mauguière, Bénédicte A bilingual collection of essays on the themes of cultural identities and immigrant writing in Canada. The emphasis is upon diversity as essays range in subject matter from Margaret Atwood, Margaret Laurence, and Marie-Claire Blais to Danny Laferrière, Ukranian-Canadian plays, “Franglo-théâtre,” contemporary Acadian and Africadian poetry and the Ontario Protestant novel.
PR 9185.2 .C85 1998 Stacks
Echoing Silence: Essays on Arctic Narrative Moss, John, editor In this 1995 symposium on Arctic narrative, storytellers, politicians and academics assembled at the University of Ottawa to celebrate the Arctic’s folk customs, its landscape and its literary traditions. The essays present northern legends, accounts of the Franklin Expeditions, the oral narrative traditions and the interaction between the southern and northern Canadian cultures.
Available Online PR 9185.5 .A7E34 1997 Stacks
Northern Experience and the Myths of Canadian Culture Hulan, Renée An investigation of the idea of the “North” as an element of Canada’s national identity and the development of this theme in Canadian culture and Canadian literature.
Available Online PR 9185.5 .N67H84 2002 Stacks
Far off Metal River: Inuit Lands, Settler Stories, and the Making of the Contemporary Arctic Cameron, Emilie Explores how Samuel Hearne’s account of the Bloody Falls massacre has shaped the ongoing colonization and economic exploitation of the North.
Available Online E 99 .E7 C2177 2015 Stacks
Listening to Old Woman Speak: Natives and Alter Natives in Canadian Literature Groening, Laura Examines the historical context of the portrayal of Native characters in Canadian literature, including the prose of Anna Jameson and Susanna Moodie and the poetry of Duncan Campbell Scott.
Available Online PR 9185.6 .I53 G76 2004 Stacks
Cultural Grammars of Nation, Diaspora, and Indigeneity in Canada McCall, Sophie, et al., editors Considers how the terms of critical debate in literary and cultural studies in Canada have shifted with respect to matters of race, nation, and difference.
PR 9188.2 .M55 C84 2011 Stacks
Tropes and Territories: Short Fiction, Postcolonial Readings, Canadian Writing in Context Dvořák, Marta and W.H. New, editors Analyzes the influence of postcolonial criticism on the reading, writing, and status of short fiction: Métis narratives, Maori myth, and stories by Alice Munro, Salman Rushdie, Alistair MacLeod, Mavis Gallant, Emily Carr, and Thomas King.
PR 9084 .T76 2007 Stacks
Unhomely States: Theorizing English-Canadian Postcolonialism Sugars, Cynthia C., editor An excellent critical introduction to the place of postcolonial theory in Canadian literary criticism. Includes essays by George Grant, Northrop Frye, Margaret Atwood, Dennis Lee, Robert Kroetsch, Linda Hutcheon, Diana Brydon, Thomas King, Terry Goldie, Arun Mukherjee, Smaro Kamboureli, Stephen Slemon, and Roy Miki.
PR 9189.6 .U5 2004 Stacks
Taking Back Our Spirits: Indigenous Literature, Public Policy and Healing Espikenew, Jo-Ann Examines contemporary autobiography, fiction, and drama to reveal how these texts respond to and critique public policy, and how literature functions as medicine” to help cure the suffering inflicted by the colonial legacy.
PR 9194.5 .I5 E65 2009 Stacks
Aboriginal Drama and Theatre Appleford, Robert Examines trickster drama, performance culture, specific plays, and historical heritage of Native theatre and drama in Canada.
PR 9194.5 .I5 A36 2005 Stacks
When the Other is Me: Native Resistance Discourse 1850–1990 LaRocque, Emma An interdisciplinary study of the Native literary response to racist writing in the Canadian historical and literary record from 1850 to 1990.
Available Online E 78 .C2 L3733 2010 Stacks
Troubling Tricksters: Revisioning Critical Conversations Morra, Linda M., and Deanna Reder, editors A collection of theoretical essays, articles, interviews, fiction, personal essays, poems, and stories that provide a revisioning of trickster criticism.
Available Online PR 9188.2 .I54 T76 2010 Stacks
Tekahionwake: E. Pauline Johnson’s Writings on Native North America Fee, Margery and Dory Nason, editors A diverse range of Johnson’s writings on what was then called “the Indian question” and on the question of her own complex Indigenous identity. Six thematic sections gather Johnson’s poetry, fiction, and non-fiction, and a rich selection of historical appendices provide context for her public life and her work as a feminist and activist for Indigenous people.
PR 9199.3 .J6 A6 2016 Stacks
Paddling Her Own Canoe The Times and Texts of E. Pauline Johnson Gerson, Carole and Strong-Boag, Veronica A major scholarly study that examines Johnson's diverse roles as a First Nations champion, New Woman, serious writer and performer, and Canadian nationalist.
PR 9199.3 .J6 Z85 2000 Stacks
In the Belly of a Laughing God: Humour and Irony in Native Women’s Poetry Andrews, Jennifer Examines how eight contemporary Native women poets in Canada and the United States employ humour and irony to address the intricacies of race, gender, and nationality.
PR 9190.9 .I53 A64 2011 Stacks
Here is Queer: Nationalisms, Sexualities and the Literatures of Canada Dickinson, Peter Consider how the interconnected concepts of nationalism and sexuality have helped shape the production and reception of Canadian and First Nations literatures.
PR 9185.5 .H6 D52 1999 Stacks
Magic Weapons: Aboriginal Writers Remaking Community After Residential School McKegney, Sam A major survey of Indigenous writings on the residential school system: Rita Joe (Mi’kmaq) and Anthony Apakark Thrasher (Inuit), Basil Johnston (Ojibway), and Tomson Highway (Cree).
E 96.2 .M34 2007 Stacks
Indigenous Poetics in Canada McLeod, Neal, editor Explores a wider sense of poetics, including Indigenous oralities, languages, and understandings of place. It examines four elements of Indigenous poetics: the poetics of memory, performance, place and space, and the poetics of medicine.
Available Online PR 9188.2 .I54 I53 2014 Stacks
Avant Canada: Poets, Prophets, Revolutionaries Betts, Gregory, and Christian Bök, editors A collection of original essays and supporting creative works on an array of Canadian literary avant-garde movements from the past fifty years. An overview of the past, present, and future of Canadian avant-garde writing. The essays explore the intersection of Canadian avant-gardisms and Indigenous decolonization. Finally, the authors also discuss controversial topics such as the relationship between Canadian and Indigenous literature, cultural appropriation, gender, and the Conceptual Writing movement.
PR 9193.7 .A93 2019 Stacks
The Decolonizing Poetics of Indigenous Literatures Neuhaus, Mareike Neuhaus uncovers residues of ancestral languages found in indigenous uses of English. She shows how these remainders ground a reading strategy that enables us to approach indigenous texts as literature, with its own discursive and rhetorical traditions that underpin its cultural and historical contexts.
Available Online PR 9188.2 .I54 N48 2015 Stacks
Shaping a World Already Made: Landscape and Poetry of the Canadian Prairies Tracie, Carl Tracie, a cultural geographer, examines the poetry of Louise Halfe and Marilyn Drumont, among other poets, to explore the symbolism and meaning of the Prairie landscape.


ARIEL: A Review of International English Literature no. 1 (1970)–present Scholarly criticism of literatures in English, with particular focus on the influence of colonization on literature. Peer-reviewed.
The Canadian Journal of Native Studies vol. 1 (1981)–present Articles, bibliographies, book reviews, and discussions related to all aspects of First Nations, including literature. Peer-reviewed.

updated & expanded by: Agatha Barc, 22 September 2020
originally compiled by: Irene Dutton, Alison Girling