Carl Watts

Carl Watts
Department of English
Royal Military College of Canada
PO Box 17000, Station Forces
Kingston, Ontario, CANADA
K7K 7B4


I hold an Honours BA from the University of Toronto, an MA from the University of Victoria, and a PhD from Queen’s University, where I’ve also taught. I specialize in Canadian literature and North American poetry; my dissertation examines the role of whiteness in constructions of Canadian identity, focusing primarily on twentieth-century fiction. At present, I’m researching the intersection between formally experimental poetry and identity politics, and I’m also increasingly interested in the relationship between poetry criticism and commentary on popular music.

My scholarly work has been published in several journals, and I’ve edited a digital edition of Laura Goodman Salverson’s 1933 novel The Dove. I occasionally publish poetry, some of which has appeared inThe Best Canadian Poetry 2014 and a chapbook published by Frog Hollow Press in 2016; I also try to remain active as a reviewer of contemporary poetry. I hope these activities help create a bridge between popular interest in the arts and what sometimes seems like the much slower moving, niche area of literary scholarship, and I try to use my teaching, too, as an opportunity to strengthen this connection.


Canadian literature, North American poetry, nationalism, modernism, avant-garde and experimental writing, critical race theory, book review culture

Recent publications

  • “Affiliation and Antimodernism in Margaret Laurence’s African Writings.” British Journal of Canadian Studies, vol. 31, no. 1, 2018. Forthcoming.
  • “Dionne Brand’s No Language Is Neutral.” Canadian Literature, CanLit Guides, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Editor. The Dove. By Laura Goodman Salverson, 1933. Digital ed., Modernist Versions Project, 2017
  • “Nation, Ethnicity, and Canada in Laura Goodman Salverson’s The Viking Heart.” American Review of Canadian Studies, vol. 46, no. 1, 2016, pp. 107-21.
  • “‘Off to one side of the curve’: Perpetual Expedition and Regional Identity in M. Wylie Blanchet’s The Curve of Time.” Studies in Canadian Literature, vol. 38, no. 1, 2013, pp. 50-68.
  • “Ondaatje’s Aesthetics of Efficiency: Modernity, Time, and the Body in the Early Ontario Poems.” Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews, no. 70, 2012, pp. 77-92.

Courses Taught

  • ENE 100 Introduction to Literature and University Writing Skills
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