The Book

Imagining Toronto book cover

Imagining Toronto (Mansfield Press, fall 2010) is available at most bookstores and online through Mansfield Press, Amazon or Chapters.

Imagining Toronto was shortlisted for the 2010 Gabrielle Roy Prize in Canadian literary criticism and won the Award of Merit, the highest honour given to a book at the 2011 Heritage Toronto Awards.

Upcoming Events

25-26 February 2012: "Going Native: Reclaiming Aboriginal Identity in Toronto Literature," “Landscapes of Difference, Espaces de Difference, Raume der Differenz” conference (Session: The Politcs of Place: Urban Sites of Contestation), Canadian Studies Association in German-speaking countries (GKS). Grainau, Germany.

Thursday 15 March 2012: Guest lecture, "The Imagined City," ARC 120, Contemporary Architecture. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, University of Toronto; Isabel Bader Theatre, 9:45-11:00 am.

Wednesday 4 April 2012: "Representing Toronto: Mapping the Role of the Artist in the Contemporary City. Panel discussion. Presented by Koffler Gallery in partnership with Diaspora Dialogues. 80 Spadina Ave., Suite 503; 7:00 pm.

Sunday 22 April 2012: Reading from Acts of Salvage at the Draft Reading Series. Details TBA.

Thursday 3 May 2012: "Literary Bodies." Panel discussion as part of Bodies in the City, a symposium of the Jackman Humanities Institute at the University of Toronto.

Thursday 17 May 2012: "Imagining Toronto the Wild" at the Toronto Botanical Garden. Inaugural lecture of the TBG's new HortiCULTURE salon series.

Recent Events

Tuesday 18 October 2011, 7:00-8:30 pm: Will the Real Cabbagetown Please Stand Up?: Regent Park, St. Jamestown and Cabbagetown in the Literary Imagination. Parliament Branch (269 Gerrard St. E.)

Saturday 1 October 2011, 2:00-3:30 pm: The Masseys and the Masses: Social and Spatial Ascendency in Rosedale and Forest Hill. Forest Hill Branch (700 Eglinton Ave. W.)

Tuesday 27 September 2011, 7:00-8:30 pm: From Streetcar Suburb to Multicultural Community: Riverdale in the Literary Imagination. Riverdale Branch, Toronto Public Library (370 Broadview Ave.)

Click here for past events.

GEOG 4280 Week 5: The Myth of the Multicultural City Part I: The End of Multiculturalism?

Lecture slides are accessible here: 2011-2012 Week 5 slides GEOG 4280 Myth of the Multicultural City Part I

GEOG 4280 Week 2: The City as Text

The Imagining Toronto course begins with the premise that literary texts — novels, stories, poems, memoirs and plays — tell us as much about place (and in particular urban space) as other tools more conventionally used in geographical research, such as mapping and demographic analyses and policy tools. It argues, further, that literary texts tell […]

Imagining Toronto wins at the 2011 Heritage Toronto Awards

I’ve been so busy lately I’ve not had a chance to update here until now, but am delighted to announce that Imagining Toronto has won the Award of Merit, the highest honour given to a book at the 2011 Heritage Toronto Awards.

The award was actually shared among three books: Imagining Toronto, Shawn Micallef’s wonderful book […]

The Imagined City at the Toronto Public Library

In the spring of 2011 I did a series of talks for the Toronto Public Library called ‘The Imagined City.’ Part of the TPL’s ‘Thought Exchange’ series, the talks included City Limits: Changing Suburbs and the Literary Imagination (PortUnion Branch), From Hip to Chic: Imagining Yorkville, 1960 to the Present (Yorkville Branch),  The Imagined City: Navigating to the City […]

Imagining Toronto Named a Finalist for the 2011 Heritage Toronto Award

I am delighted to share that the Imagining Toronto book has been named a finalist for the 2011 Heritage Toronto Award!

The list of finalists includes a number of fine folks and lovely books, among them Shawn Micallef for his wonderful book, Stroll, Ross King’s Defiant Spirits: The Modernist Revolution of the Group of Seven, former Toronto […]

Fall Events Update

We’re gearing up for a busy fall here at the Imagining Toronto project: hope you’ll be able to join us for some of this season’s events!

First, here are things reviewers are saying about the Imagining Toronto book: Quill & Quire calls it “a wise, thoughtful, and careful book,” Torontoist describes it as “often lively, and always […]

Imagining Toronto at Classical Pursuits

Welcome Classical Pursuits visitors!

Here are the slides from today’s Imagining Toronto talk at Victoria College:

Imagining Toronto CLassical Pursuits Toronto Pursuits talk 21 July 2011

I’ll update this post later to include links to other literary references of interest.

Engaging Toronto's Diverse Communities Through the City's Literature

“The city is the place of our meeting with the other. … The city is the privileged site where the other is and where we ourselves are other, as the place where we play the other.” [Roland Barthes, Semiology and the Urban. 1986.]

Welcome Toronto Public Library staff who have registered for today’s workshop!

Here are the […]

Parkdale, Scummy Parkdale

As promised, for those who attended the “Parkdale, Scummy Parkdale” Jane’s Walk event this afternoon but were not able to hear well due to the huge turnout or who just wanted a printed copy of your own, here are the reference notes I used on the tour.

Parkdale Scummy Parkdale Amy Notes Janes Walk […]

From Hip to Chic: Imagining Yorkville, 1960 to the Present

This evening, as Part 2 of the Imagined City series of talks I am doing this spring for the Toronto Public Library, I will discuss literary representations of Yorkville. The title suggests I’ll be focusing on Yorkville from 1960s to the present, but in fact I’ll discuss representations of Yorkville back to its inception as […]