Editing Modernism in Canada


June 3, 2011

Congress 2011

This past Congress in Fredericton was not only the first conference I have attended, it was also my first time presenting, and so I hope you can imagine both my intimidation and amazement. Because of this half-agape state the entire weekend, I can hardly count on making an academic, eloquent and original, let alone coherent, argument on the importance of attending conferences like these (especially, for me, one so close to Halifax). Moreover, I don’t think the argument needs to made, since it’s pretty self-evident. So I’ll have to resign myself to giving an impressionistic version of what I remember as the important features of Congress.

First of all, although mine was an informal presentation, I was a nervous wreck – and yet Katherine Shwetz, my colleague, and I, were surrounded by friends and familiar faces during our panel. I felt welcomed and encouraged, and I can’t tell you how important that was for me. Moreover, the other presentations given during the panel were varied and vastly interesting, from our own work with Le Nigog to website design. Besides the goings-on in my own periphery, ACQL, who hosted our panel, also supported a myriad of other interesting presentations, both from my colleagues and people new to me. Matt Huculak and Emily Ballantyne presented on their own work with Le Nigog, while Vanessa Lent presented on John Glassco, and I was impressed with each one.

After my presentation, I was free to explore Congress, and I took every advantage of that. From keynotes speakers, to the Gothic, Pop Culture, and more Canadian panels and even an interactive viewing of Macbeth in the park, it had everything for every taste. Overall, Congress 2011 was an experience I hope to have again.

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