Calls for Papers

Christianity and Literature Study Group Annual Conference, Toronto 2017

Organizers: Deborah Bowen (Redeemer) and Katherine Quinsey (Windsor)

The Christianity and Literature Study Group invites proposals for papers and sessions on any aspect of Christianity and literature for its annual Conference at the 2017 Congress in Toronto. We welcome a range of critical approaches and topics, including pedagogy and creative writing. In addition to poetry and fiction, papers and sessions this year might consider fantasy or theatre or multimedia genres. We would also welcome topics inspired by the centenary of Vimy Ridge and the 150th anniversary of Confederation, such as a session on war, trauma, and healing, or the role Christianity has played in the development of Canadian Literature. We are also featuring a roundtable on pedagogy (see below).

Paper Proposals

Following the guidelines on the ACCUTE website, paper proposers should send a 300-500 word proposal (with no identifying marks), a 100 word abstract, a 50 word biographical statement, and the submitter information form, to or to no later than 18 November 2016. Proposal submission forms will be available on the ACCUTE website. All CLSG proposals are sent to a minimum of two readers on a blind referee basis, and acceptance is confirmed usually by mid-January.

Member-organized panels (see below)

This year our joint panel with ACCUTE is on the topic of War, Trauma, and Healing; a full description appears below. Also to be found below are member-organized sessions on the topic of Word and Spirit, organized by Irene Grace Bom (Queen’s University) and our pedagogical roundtable, “The Unteachable Text,” organized by Tina Trigg (The King’s University). Proposals for these panels should be sent to the organizers no later than 18 November 2016. Please note that if you are sending in a proposal for the Pedagogy Roundtable you are still eligible to propose a full paper for another of our sessions or for the general CLSG pool!

Note: In order to present a paper at the CLSG meeting, you must be a member in good standing of ACCUTE as well as of the CLSG.

Proposals for papers in the general pool should be sent to either Deborah or Katherine at the addresses or emails below:

Deborah Bowen
Department of English
Redeemer University College
777 Garner Road E.
Ancaster, ON L9K 1J4

Katherine Quinsey
Department of English
University of Windsor
Windsor, ON N9B 3P4

Spiritual Warfare in C.S. Lewis’s Cosmic Trilogy

Sponsor: Inklings Institute of Canada
Organizer: Greg Maillet

In response to this year’s ACCUTE theme, the Inklings Institute of Canada calls for papers related to the theme of spiritual warfare in the Cosmic Trilogy of C.S. Lewis. Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandra, and That Hideous Strength all deal with this theme in multiple ways, each displaying aspects of what Lewis scholar Jerry Roots calls “the surprising imagination” of C.S. Lewis. This panel will explore how Lewis imaginatively portrays spiritual warfare, one of the common topics in his non-fiction, and in particular how the varied landscapes and motifs of the Cosmic Trilogy allow readers to gain new insights into this complex theme.

Panel organizer:
Greg Maillet

Please send paper proposals, including a 300-500 word proposal (with no identifying marks), a 100 word abstract, a 50 word biographical statement, and the submitter information form, to the panel organizer no later than 18 November 2016. Proposal submission forms are available on the ACCUTE website at

Word and Spirit

Organizer: Irene Grace Bom (Queen’s University)

The coming of the Spirit at Pentecost gave believers new powers of speech as well as the revelation of “things to come” (John 16:13). Yet theologians since Augustine have tended to position believers as readers and interpreters (primarily of Scripture) rather than as speakers and writers. How can literary writing facilitate the work of the Spirit? Papers might consider the following:

  • relationships between literary writing and the performative speech of miracles
  • ways in which God’s message of grace – as that which supersedes human knowledge – matches the indirect discourses of literature
  • historical studies of the conflicted relationship between studies of the Word and studies of literature
  • ways in which creative writing has been considered inspired by the Spirit
  • ways in which God’s embodiment of truth – both in the person of Jesus Christ and in physical manifestations of the Spirit – makes representation one with life
  • studies of the debates surrounding “plain speech,” demonstrations of the Spirit, and God’s hidden wisdom (sophian en mysterio, 1 Corinthians 2:7)
  • models of writing, reading, and teaching literature that cultivate seeing and hearing in the Spirit

Paper proposers should send a 300-500 word proposal (with no identifying marks), a 100 word abstract, a 50 word biographical statement, and the submitter information form to no later than 18 November 2016.

War, Trauma, and Healing

Jointly sponsored panel, Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English (ACCUTE), Christianity and Literature Study Group

Organizers: Tina Trigg (The King’s University), Katherine Quinsey (University of Windsor)

The centenary of the battle of Vimy Ridge in World War I and the sesquicentennial of Canadian Confederation are significant historical events in 2017, providing an opportunity to reflect critically upon the daily reality of war in an ever-shrinking world. In the light of these anniversaries, this panel welcomes papers on the image, idea, and reality of war, the trauma it produces, and the possibility of healing, specifically as enacted through creative textual expression in multiple forms and genres. Papers could address the idea, metaphor, and reality of war as engaged by texts: its intersection of spiritual and physical, of idealized principle and economic and political imperatives; the meaning and impact of orchestrated violence; or different forms of and purposes for warfare, both literal and metaphorical, physical, moral, and spiritual. They could focus on war-related trauma and responses to it through narrative fiction, poetry, performance, or cross-media genres, considering how and whether writing and text operate as emotional, spiritual, moral agents in the process of healing, in either a communal or an individual context. They can consider the role of religious faith in this context as represented, interrogated, explored, or expressed through the texts under consideration, in which the material and the spiritual meet in textual and emotional terms. Papers on Canadian literature are welcome, but the panel encourages a trans-national perspective if possible.

Paper proposers should send a 300-500 word proposal (with no identifying marks), a 100 word abstract, a 50 word biographical statement, and the submitter information form, to one or both of the panel organizers no later than 18 November 2016.


Tina Trigg
The King’s University
9125 – 50 Street
Edmonton, AB T6B 2H3

Katherine Quinsey
Department of English
University of Windsor
Windsor, ON N9B 3P4

Pedagogical Roundtable: The “Unteachable” Text

This roundtable seeks several brief presentations centering around the topic of the “unteachable” text – that is, any literary text from any period/genre that becomes problematic in the classroom setting. The text’s contentious nature may be predictable or have arisen unexpectedly; the roundtable seeks to explore a wide range of responses in order to prompt discussion.

Contributions may address concepts including, but not limited to:

  • What constitutes an “unteachable” text?
  • How do we deal with such texts practically? (Best practices and anecdotes welcome)
  • How does the incidence of the “unteachable” text inform our pedagogical choices/practices?
  • How might an encounter with the “unteachable” text link to student faith development/outcomes?
  • How do textual choices and trigger words/issues intersect?
  • How might an “unteachable” text affect classroom rapport, vulnerability, risk-tasking?
  • How does the institutional context affect “teachability” of material/student-receptiveness?

Please send proposals for a 5-10 minute presentation to Organizer and Chair by 18 November 2016: Tina Trigg, King’s University (

Click here to view previous calls for papers.