English

The Writer-in-Residence Program brings authors of national and international standing to Mount Royal University to work with and mentor students. For the last decade the program has provided "an opportunity for authors, students and faculty to meet, exchange ideas and increase awareness of scholarly and artistic endeavors.... The goal of the program is to allow students, faculty and the greater community access to distinguished and unique voices in the Canadian literary landscape in a personal and professional way that encourages new ideas" (Cope).

Visiting writers hold office hours and meet with student writers. They also visit classes, give public readings/multi-media presentations, and host debates and discussions with other writers. The Department of English, Languages, and Cultures' Writer-in-Residence program forges links between the academic and the creative communities within Calgary and across the country. This gives our students direct contact with their role models and inspires them in all aspects of writing and the study of literature.

Writer-in-Residence 2021/22

George Elliott Clarke
Jan. 31 – Feb. 4, 2022

The fourth Poet Laureate of Toronto (2012–15) and the seventh Parliamentary/Canadian Poet Laureate (2016–17), George Elliott Clarke, is a revered artist in song, drama, fiction, screenplay, essays and poetry. 

Born in Windsor, Nova Scotia, in 1960, Clarke is also a pioneering scholar of African-Canadian literature. A professor of English at the University of Toronto, Clarke has taught at Duke, McGill, the University of British Columbia, and Harvard.

He holds eight honorary doctorates, plus appointments to the Order of Nova Scotia and the Order of Canada. His recognitions include the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Fellows Prize, the Governor-General’s Award for Poetry, the National Magazine Gold Award for Poetry, the Premiul Poesis (Romania), the Dartmouth Book Award for Fiction, the Eric Hoffer Book Award for Poetry (US), and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Achievement Award. Clarke’s work is the subject of Africadian Atlantic: Essays on George Elliott Clarke (2012), edited by Joseph Pivato.

His latest project? Vocals and lyrics for rapper Shad’s song, “Storm.”

Photo credit: Melanie Janisse

Past visiting writers