- Category: Projects
In recent years the Central European Association for Canadian Studies has implemented a policy of designing projects with a regional scope, shaped to involve Canadianists in all the countries from which it draws its membership. So far, two such projects have been launched.
This project began in 2007 and lasted three years. It set out to map the Central European diaspora in Canada, approaching this in two different but complementary ways:
● through interviews in which immigrants from Central Europe speak of their personal experience;
● through the more mediated form of literary texts.
In both cases, immigrants from all the countries represented in the CEACS were included.
The final outcome of the project is a two-volume publication entitled Migrating Memories: Central Europe in Canada, which appeared in December 2010. The first volume is a "literary diaspora" anthology with texts (in English and French) written by Central European immigrants to Canada. Some of these were written in the authors' mother tongues and have been translated specially for this publication. The second volume comprises oral histories.
The central theme linking the two volumes is the negotiation of diversity, both in the relationship between Canada and the individuals' old homelands (viewing the homeland through the prism of the Canadian experience) and within Canada (the experience of taking on multicultural identity in the new homeland; the view of Canada on the part of the new citizens).
The project involved over twenty academics from the eight member countries of the CEACS. It was coordinated by Vesna Lopicic, of the University of Nis.
Translation Research Project - "Translating Canada"
Whereas the Diaspora Project examined the experience of Central European immigrants to Canada, the Translation Project looked at the impact of Canada in Central Europe. Entitled "Translating Canada", it had three main components:
● the creation of a complex on-line database (Log in and Password: guest) of translations into the national languages in the Central European region of of literary works, literary criticism and scholarly works in the areas of the humanities and social sciences that were written by Canadians or, in the case of those written by non-Canadians, that deal with or are set in Canada;
● the holding of a conference based on the results of the research, which took place in Budapest, Hungary, on 21-22 October 2011;
● the publication of a book of essays, Canada in Eight Tongues, analyzing the features of the works translated in the individual countries as well as the impact of the translations on the region as a whole.
Translation Reception Project - "Canada Consumed"
This project dealt with the reception of Canadian texts and their authors in the countries of Central Europe in the post-Communist period from 1990 to 2017. “Reception” was interpreted broadly – how reviewers (both scholarly and non-scholarly) responded to them in print and online; reactions from ordinary readers on online literary discussion sites and individual blogs; coverage in the local press, radio and television of Canadian authors appearing at literary festivals and book launches in the region; the degree to which certain authors - to name only three, Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro and Leonard Cohen - have become a recognized part of the culture landscape of individual countries in the CEACS region. In short, the aim was to explore the “presence” of Canadian authors and their works in the CEACS member countries at the beginning of the twenty-first century.
The project was launched with a kick-off meeting held in October 2016 in Budapest organized by the team leaders, Katalin Kurtosi (University of Szeged) and Don Sparling (Masaryk University, Brno). It was completed with the publication in September 2019 of Canada Consumed, a collection of eighteen essays comprising both surveys of each CEACS member country as well as explorations of individual authors and specific local phenomena.