Welcome to a new year and a new issue of The Bull Calf Review!
This issue is one of our fullest and most diverse ones yet. It includes fiction, poetry, criticism, and retrospective reviews, and, Zachary Abram kicks off our new interview section with a conversation with Armand Garnet Ruffo, a poet and critic of Anishinaabe heritage.
While no single theme unites the reviews of this issue, each of the works reviewed takes up questions and themes that are strikingly contemporary. For example, David Hollingshead’s review of Irina Kovalyova’s Specimen focuses on her combination of speculative fiction and scientific experiment. Similarly, Guillaume Morrisette’s and Lorna Crozier’s works contemplate the way in which human experience is mediated and transformed within technological and natural “worlds.” As Sarah Bezan notes, Morisette’s New Tab offers a new “representation of technological mediation and of the social and personal malaise of millennials.”
We are especially thrilled to include a review of George Grant’s Lament for a Nation by Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate George Elliott Clarke in our retrospective section. Although Grant’s “polemic” was first published in 1965, Clarke points out that it “remains timely” and that “[o]ur current concerns regarding climate change, mass surveillance […] the plague of ‘terrorism’ here and undeclared, and vicious wars ‘over there,’ all suggest Grant was not—completely—wrong in his insights and prophecies.” Indeed, Grant’s description of “the banality of existence in technological societies” may also offer into twenty-first century life and, especially, the social lives of millennials that Morissette explores in New Tab.
These are only a few highlights of the reviews you will find in this issue. We hope that you will enjoy these reviews and find within them some of the complexities and excitement of contemporary Canada.
Welcome to The Bull Calf 6.1.