Eli MacLaren

 Eli  MacLaren
Contact Information
514-398-4400 Ext 00803
Email address: 
eli.maclaren [at] mcgill.ca
Faculty Members
Associate Professor; Director of Graduate Studies

B.A. (University of Alberta); M.A. (University of Western Ontario); Ph.D. (University of Toronto)

Nineteenth Century to Present
Teaching areas: 

Poetry and poetics; Canadian poetry, including nature poetry and ecopoetics; Canadian fiction; First Nations writers; bibliography and the history of the book; authorship and publishing history; law and literature (copyright)

Recent courses: ENGL 228 (Survey of English-Canadian Literature to 1950); ENGL 311 (Poetics); ENGL 327 (Canadian Prose Fiction to 1950); ENGL 346 (Materiality and Sociology of Texts); ENGL 409 (Alice Munro); ENGL 410 (Canadian Romanticism); ENGL 531 (Al Purdy); ENGL 680 (Race and Nation in 19th-Century Canadian Fiction); ENGL 690 (Don McKay and the Canadian Small Press); ENGL 785 (Approaches to Book History)

Taught previously at: 

University of Toronto, Queen’s University, Carleton University

Current research: 

Elsie Fry Laurence and Canadian authorship

John Lovell and history of small-scale Canadian literary publishing

Poetics of the contemporary lyric

Scholarly editing of Alice Munro

Selected publications: 



Little Resilience: The Ryerson Poetry Chap-Books (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020)

Dominion and Agency: Copyright and the Structuring of the Canadian Book Trade, 1867–1918 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2011)


“Scholarly Editing: A Way to Read Al Purdy’s ‘House Guest.’” An Echo in the Mountains: Al Purdy at One Hundred, edited by Nicholas Bradley. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020. 173–96.

“The Ryerson Poetry Chap-Books.” Imprinting Canada: The McGraw-Hill Ryerson Collection, edited by Ruth Panofsky. Ryerson University Library (2019). https://imprintingcanada.library.ryerson.ca/chapters/chapter-3/case-studies/ryerson-poetry-chap-books/

“Copyright and Poetry in Twenty-First-Century Canada: Poets’ Incomes and Fair Dealing.” Canadian Literature 233 (2018): 10–27.

“Canadian Book History.” In The Oxford Companion to Canadian Literature, edited by Cynthia Sugars. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. 799–812.

“La malédiction littéraire au Canada anglais: Le cas de Lionel Stevenson.” Dans Deux siècles de malédiction littéraire: Transformations, médiations et transferts d’un mythe, dirigé par Pascal Brissette et Marie Pier-Luneau. Liège (Belgique): Presses universitaires de Liège, 2014. 231–40.

“ ‘Significant Little Offerings’: The Origin of the Ryerson Poetry Chap-Books, 1925–26.” Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 72 (2013): 9–49.

Josée Vincent and Eli MacLaren. “Book Policy and Copyright in Canada and Quebec: Defending National Cultures.” Canadian Literature 204 (2010): 63–82. = “Les politiques du livre au Québec et au Canada, à la défense des cultures nationales.” In Réseaux et circulation internationale du livre: diplomatie culturelle et propagande 1880-1980, edited by François Vallotton. Paris: Éditions Nouveau Monde, 2011.

“Resistance, Rebellion, and Print in the Northwest.” In History of the Book in Canada. Vol. 2, 1840–1918, edited by Yvan Lamonde, Patricia Lockhart Fleming, and Fiona A. Black. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005. 343–49.

“Facies cholerica: the Record of Cholera in Print.” In History of the Book in Canada. Vol. 1, Beginnings to 1840, edited by Patricia Lockhart Fleming, Gilles Gallichan, and Yvan Lamonde. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004. 303–6.

Edited Journal Issues

Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada 50, no.1 – 55, no. 1 (spring 2012 to spring 2017), 10 issues, 40 articles

Guest-Edited Journal Issues

“The Generation and Regeneration of Books / La génération et régénérations du livre (SHARP 2015)”. Special issue. Mémoires du livre / Studies in Book Culture 7, no. 2 (2016).

“New Studies in the History of Reading” = “Nouvelles recherches en histoire de la lecture.” Special issue, Mémoires du livre / Studies in Book Culture 3, no. 2 (2012). 

“Bibliography and Book History in Canada: Views on the State of the Discipline.” Special issue, Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada 46, no. 1 (Spring 2008).

Book Reviews

Review of The Handover: How Bigwigs and Bureaucrats Transferred Canada’s Best Publisher and the Best Part of Our Literary Heritage to a Foreign Multinational, by Elaine Dewar. University of Toronto Quarterly 88, no. 3 (2019): 112–13.

Review of The Literary Legacy of the Macmillan Company of Canada: Making Books and Mapping Culture, by Ruth Panofsky. Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 70 (2012): 93–96.

Review of “Collecting Stamps Would Have Been More Fun”: Canadian Publishing and the Correspondence of Sinclair Ross, 1933–1986, edited by Jordan Stouck and David Stouck. The Bull Calf 1, no. 3 (Sept. 2011). http://www.thebullcalfreview.ca.

Review of Piracy: The Intellectual Property Wars from Gutenberg to Gates, by Adrian Johns. Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada 48, no. 2 (2010). 332–36.

Review of Canadian Copyright: A Citizen’s Guide, by Laura J. Murray and Samuel E. Trosow. Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada 47, no. 1 (2009): 113–16.

Review of The Internationalisation of Copyright Law: Books, Buccaneers and the Black Flag in the Nineteenth Century, by Catherine Seville. Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada  46, no. 1 (2008): 126–29.

“Plumbing the Depths.” Review of Spine, by K.I. Press. Echolocation 4 (2005): 63–66.

Awards, honours, and fellowships: 

SSHRC Connection Grant, 2019–20 (“Making Well: Poetry Matters”)

Co-chercheur du Groupe de recherches et d’études sur le livre au Québec (GRÉLQ), 2013–

SSHRC Connection Grant, 2015 (“SHARP 2015: The Generation and Regeneration of Books”)

Seventh Annual Leon Katz Memorial Lecture, Friends of the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto, 2015 (“Major Contours in the History of the Book in Canada”)

FRQSC, subvention nouveau professeur-chercheur, 2013–15 (“Examen du droit d’auteur: pressions légales et activité littéraire au Canada”)

Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2011–13

Canadian Literature (journal), Award for Best Essay, 2010

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