Call for Papers: South Asian Canadian Literature: A Centennial Journey

May 23, 2014, marks the centennial anniversary of the “Komagata Maru Incident,” which involved the arrival and subsequent expulsion of hopeful South Asian migrants looking to join a modest South Asian community already settled in the Dominion since the turn of the century. This Special Issue looks to the Komagata Maru as the symbolic marker of South Asian Canadian migration history as a “one hundred year” phenomenon. We invite submissions on all topics related to South Asian Canadian literature and culture, in terms that are as expansive, varied, and richly textured as the “centennial” history of South Asian Canadian settlement might imply. We welcome papers that examine under-represented genres; new critical, theoretical, comparative, or inter-disciplinary approaches to works by canonical or emerging authors; and contributions that help broaden our understanding of the texts, contexts, innovations, and hermeneutics of South Asian Canadian writers.

Possible topics include:

  • narrativizations of the Komagata Maru
  • second-generation writers/perspectives
  • food, memory, belonging
  • globalization, neoliberalism and South Asian “capital”
  • transnational, cross-cultural or hemispheric frameworks
  • diasporic cartographies (e.g., Indo-Caribbean, the “double diaspora”)
  • conflict and crisis: the Sri Lankan Civil War; Kashmir; 9/11; Pakistan-U.S. relations; “war on terror”
  • theater/performance collectives: e.g., Montreal Serai, Vancouver Sath, Why Not Theatre, Teesri Duniya Theatre
  • critical studies or surveys of under-represented genres: e.g., drama, poetry, the short story, memoir or life writing, children’s/young adult literature, the graphic novel
Contributors are encouraged to propose papers focusing on canonical and/or lesser known authors. Examples include (but are certainly not restricted to) Sadhu Binning, Rana Bose, Randy Boyagoda, Cyril Dabydeen, Ranj Dhaliwal, Farzana Doctor, Rishma Dunlop, Anosh Irani, Surjeet Kalsey, Rohinton Mistry, Shani Mootoo, Michael Ondaatje, Anita Rau Badami, Ajmer Rode, Shyam Selvadurai, Priscila Uppal, M.G. Vassanji.

We welcome submissions in English and in French. Submissions should be 6,000-8,000 words, including Notes and Works Cited, and should conform to the MLA Handbook, 7th edition or Le guide du rédacteur, 2nd edition. Please submit essays electronically via Word attachment to

Deadline for submissions is 15 August 2014, with publication scheduled for 2015. For more information, visit the journal’s website at or contact Mariam Pirbhai at, Cynthia Sugars at, or Herb Wyile at