Hanna Weislander
Illustration by Hanna Weislander


  1. What does Noah Richler assume about Canadian literature?
  2. Explain the “Franklin expedition” as Richler sees it. What stories support this view?
  3. What does Wayne Johnston think about a unifying theme for Canadian literature? How does Richler reply?
  4. Richler is described as the driver through Canada’s literary atlas. What kind of a driver is he?
  5. What four sections of the multi-series radio talk are discussed in Charles Foran’s essay?
  6. What are some failings that Foran points out in Richler’s argument?

Extended Thinking

  1. What does Richler propose as the unifying concept to Canadian literature? Do you think it is an accurate theme?


  1. Richler’s all-encompassing thesis for Canadian literature fails to encompass all of Canadian literature. However, Foran does propose that he has contributed a “simple but original thought.” Is it enough to provoke thought and be original if your intentions fail? Explain.

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