Research Creation

Research-creation is "[a]n approach to research that combines creative and academic research practices, and supports the development of knowledge and innovation through artistic expression, scholarly investigation, and experimentation. The creation process is situated within the research activity and produces critically informed work in a variety of media (art forms)." [From the SSHRC website.]

Research-creation activities in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences are primarily undertaken by members of the Department of English. (The Department of English also offers an MA in Creative Writing, as well as  Undergraduate Diplomas in Creative Writing, Performance and Media Communications, and Professional Writing.) Faculty working in this area include Mary Dalton, whose critically-acclaimed book, Hooking, is a collection of centos, literary works that are akin to remixes, combining the works of several authors into a new form; Susan Ingersoll, whose book of poetry, now the moon appears among the lilies, was shortlisted for the Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador’s 1998 Provincial Book Award for Poetry; Larry Mathews, whose novel, The Artificial Newfoundlander, was described as follows: "Hugh Norman, a middle-aged English prof researching an eccentric novelist priest, is faced with the unexpected arrivals of his mysteriously unhappy daughter, her clueless husband, and an old flame ready for rekindling."; and Jamie Skidmore, whose play, Give as Good as We Get, is about "1828 rescue of almost 200 shipwrecked sailors and passengers by the Harvey family [and] their trusty Newfoundland dog, Hairyman."

The department of English also hosts Memorial’s Writer in Residence; award-winning playwright Robert Chafe, is the 2013 Writer in Residence; "His play, Oil and Water, about the USS Truxton disaster and survivor Lanier Phillips, is scheduled to tour Canada in the winter of 2014."

Translation work arguably falls under the definition of research-creation. (However, SSHRC’s definition of research-creation may exclude translation: "Research-creation cannot be limited to the interpretation or analysis of a creator’s work, conventional works of technological development, or work that focuses on the creation of curricula.") Nevertheless, members of various departments in the Faculty of Arts undertake award-winning and influential translation work. For example Rob Finley (Department of English, Memorial) and Marta Marín-Domine (WLU) are translating Catalan writer Joaquim Amat-Piniella’s novel K.L. Reich, which narrates Amat-Piniella’s experiences in concentration camps, from Catalan into English. Jean Snook (Department of German and Russian) translated Kahn & Engelmann by Hans Eichner, which "tells the story of a Jewish family from rural Hungary, their immigration to Vienna in the great days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire." Snook’s translation has been described as ‘luminous’. Neil Bishop (Department of French and Spanish) recently translated Annick Perrot-Bishop’s book of poetry, Of Amber Waters Woven; the poetry is described as "private, hauntingly resonant and extraordinarily beautiful". And finally, Julie Brittain and Marguerite MacKenzie (Department of Linguistics) translated Kuihkwahchaw: Naskapi Wolverine Stories, a book of legends narrated by "John Peastitute (1896-1981) … a Naskapi Elder who was not only well respected as a story-keeper, but also as a storyteller."

Perhaps one of the most innovative examples of research-creation is the work of Pam Hall, an Interdisciplinary PhD student within the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. "Pam Hall is a visual artist, film-maker, designer and writer, whose work has been exhibited across Canada and internationally, including the National Gallery of Canada." With support from the Community-University Research for Recovery Alliance (CURRA), she created an Encyclopedia of Local Knowledge, which uses multimedia to showcase "local knowledge shared by more than 80 collaborators of diverse ages in more than a dozen rural [Newfoundland] communities".


Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

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