Fiona Polack

Position

Associate Professor

Education

  • PhD (University of Tasmania)
  • BA (University of Tasmania)

Contact Information

Research Interests

Petrocultures and Energy Humanities, Island and Ocean Studies, Settler Colonialism, Newfoundland and Labrador Literary and Cultural Studies, Australian Literature

Selected Publications

Books and Edited Collections

  • Fiona Polack, editor. Tracing Ochre: Changing Perspectives on the Beothuk. University of Toronto Press, 2018.
  • Petrocultures Research Group. After Oil. West Virginia UP, 2016.

Articles and Book Chapters

  • “Introduction: De-Islanding the Beothuk.”  Tracing Ochre: Changing Perspectives on the Beothuk, edited by Fiona Polack, University of Toronto Press, 2018, pp. 3-29.
  • “Shanawdithit and Truganini: Converging and Diverging Histories.”  Tracing Ochre: Changing Perspectives on the Beothuk, edited by Fiona Polack, University of Toronto Press, 2018, pp. 321-344.
  • “Offshore Rig” (co-written with Danine Farquharson). Fueling Culture: 100 Words for Energy and Environment, edited by Imre Szeman, Jennifer Wenzel, and Patricia Yaeger, Fordham UP, 2017, pp. 252-254.
  • “The Politics of Energy Sources.”  Improving Democratic Governance in Newfoundland and Labrador, edited by Alex Marland and Lisa Moore, ISER Books, 2017, pp. 311-313.
  • “Juxtaposing Contemporary Writing from Canada and Australia.” Journal of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature, vol. 15, no. 3, 2015, https://openjournals.library.sydney.edu.au/index.php/JASAL/article/view/10565.
  • “Reading Shanawdithit’s Drawings: Transcultural Texts in the North American Colonial World.” Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History, vol. 14, no. 3, 2013. Project Muse, https://muse.jhu.edu/article/524452.
  • “Amelia Curran’s Newfoundland Painting.” Keats-Shelley Journal, vol. 60, 2011, pp. 25-29.
  • “Art in the Bush: Romanticist Painting for Indigenous Audiences in Tasmania and Newfoundland.” Nineteenth-Century Contexts, vol. 33, no. 4, 2011, pp. 333-351.
  • “Memory against History: Figuring the Past in Cloud of Bone.” English Studies in Canada, vol. 35, no. 4, 2009, pp. 53-69.
  • “Taking the Waters: Abjection and Homecoming in The Shipping News and Death of a River Guide.” Journal of Commonwealth Literature, vol. 41, no. 1, 2006, pp. 93-110.
  • “Home Births: Women and Regional Space in The Sound of One Hand Clapping and Waiting for Time.” Australasian-Canadian Studies, vol. 22, no. 2, 2004, and vol. 23, no. 1, 2005, pp. 181-208.
  • “Writing and Rewriting the Island: Tasmania, Politics, and Contemporary Australian Fiction.” Message in a Bottle: Proceedings from an International Conference, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, June 28-30, 1998, edited by Laurie Brinklow, Frank Ledwell, and Jane Ledwell, Institute of Island Studies, U of Prince Edward Island, 2000, pp. 215-229.
  • “Place and Space: Views from a Tasmanian Mountain.” Imagining Australian Space: Cultural Studies and Spatial Inquiry, edited by Ruth Barcan and Ian Buchanan, U of Western Australia P, 1999, pp. 145-157.

Conference Presentations and Lectures

  • “Archiving Loss: Photographs of the Ocean Ranger.” CROSS: Canada’s Responsibility to Our Shining Seas: Ethics, Community, Culture, 1867-2067, 12 May 2017, Dalhousie University, Halifax.
  • “Is Newfoundland and Labrador a Petroculture?” Asking the Big Questions: What Might a Sustainable Post-Oil Newfoundland and Labrador Look Like?, 4 November 2016, Memorial University of University, Canada.
  • “Time, Risk and the Public.” Petrocultures 2016: The Offshore, 1 September 2016, Memorial University of University, Canada
  • “The Rhetoric of Catastrophe: Commissions of Public Inquiry into Offshore Oil.” Cultures of Energy 5 Research Symposium, CENHS, 23 April 2016, Rice University, USA.
  • “Tony Birch’s Blood, and Oil.” Literary Networks Convention, 7 July 2015, University of Wollongong, Australia.
  • “Oceans, Rivers, Tributaries: Comparing Settler Texts Now.” Worlds Within: Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature, 10 July 2014, University of Sydney, Australia.
  • “Tales of Absence: Ken Pittman’s Shanaditti: Last of the Beothuks and Tom Haydon’s the Last Tasmanian.” American Association for Australasian Literary Studies 2014 Conference, 26 April 2014, Portland State University, USA.
  • “Shanawdithit and Truganini: Converging and Diverging Histories.” Traces of Ochre: A Symposium, 17 June 2013, Memorial University of University, Canada.
  • “Regional Textualities: Interpreting Shanawdithit’s Annotated Sketches.” Contested Regional Identities: The 19th Atlantic Canada Studies Conference, 5 May 2012, University of New Brunswick (at Saint John), Canada.
  • “Mirror Islands: The Colonial Histories of Tasmania and Newfoundland.” Gilbert Higgins Memorial Lecture for the Newfoundland Historical Society, 23 February 2012, Marine Institute, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada.
  • “Romancing Annihilation in Nineteenth-Century Narratives of Tasmania and Newfoundland.” Reading across the Pacific: The American Association for Australasian Literary Studies 2012 Conference, 17 February 2012, The Delta Hotel, Toronto, Canada.
  • “Reading Shanawdithit’s Drawings.” Aboriginal Studies Seminar Series, 29 November 2011, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada.
  • “The Currans and the Colonies: Shelley’s Circle and the Settlement of Newfoundland.” Romanticism and the Tyrannies of Distance Conference, 10 February 2011, University of Sydney, Australia.
  • “Different Islands, Same Stories-Settler and Indigenous Encounters in Tasmania and Newfoundland.” 18 August 2010, Boyd’s Cove Beothuk Interpretation Centre, Canada.
  • “Ambivalence in Robert Drewe’s The Savage Crows.” 12 February 2007, Department of English, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada.
  • “Of Knots and Rivers: Tasmania and Newfoundland.” Invited presentation. University of Tasmania Colonialism and Its Aftermath Seminar Series, 16 February 2001, Ross, Australia.

Current Research Projects

  • Cold Water Oil, a collaborative research project with Danine Farquharson that examines cultural figurations of the North Atlantic offshore oil and gas industry: http://coldwateroil.ca/

Other Professional Activities

Regularly Taught Courses

Undergraduate

  • English 2122: World Literature in English
  • English 3161: Australian Literature
  • English 4891: Imagining Islands

Graduate

  • English 7087: Petrofictions
  • English 7003: Theory for Our Times

Honours And Graduate Supervision 

Energy Humanities, Post-Colonial Literatures, Settler Colonialism, Newfoundland and Labrador Literature and Culture, Island Studies

Contact

Department of English

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000