The UBC English Students' Association. Whether you're Lit or Lang, a Major or Minor, we're here for you.
Coping with an Alien Lifestyle

Coping with an Alien Lifestyle

UNCERTAINTY. ALIEN. COPE. Three words float continuously in Lilith Iyapo’s mind when she awakens in a living alien ship: uncertainty, alien, and cope. She struggles to adjust to her new housemates, the Oankali, who claims to have rescued the “best” humans from earth to preserve humanity after a nuclear world...
More Than Fairy Tales: The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Brilliance of Children’s Literature

More Than Fairy Tales: The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Brilliance of Children’s Literature

C.S. Lewis, the author of the well-loved Chronicles of Narnia, once said that “a children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” There are books that we fall in love with during childhood, which, upon returning to, seem almost lifeless compared...
"It's Not Just a Dream, it Could be Our Reality"

“It’s Not Just a Dream, it Could be Our Reality”

The little things make a difference in the bigger picture. Global warming and climate change are not new concerns, but why do some of us continue to treat it as if they are topics not worth being proactive about? In Chris Van Allsburg’s Just A Dream (1990), Van Allsburg places the readers...
5 Books to Rejuvenate Your Reading List for the Springtime

5 Books to Rejuvenate Your Reading List for the Springtime

A few terms synonymous with spring would include sunshine, bloom, allergy season, and here in Vancouver: cherry blossoms. Along with spring also comes the dreaded (for some) task of spring cleaning. So get out those dusters and open the blinds. Perhaps you’ll stumble upon your bookcase as you power down...
6 TIPS TO BEAT YOUR WRITER’S BLOCK!

6 TIPS TO BEAT YOUR WRITER’S BLOCK!

We are approaching that time of the term when we scramble to find the perfect words to use for our term papers. It could also be the moment when you’re struggling to find a way to silence the cursor on your screen that continuously taunts you every time it pulses on the...
“Is this your buying China?”: Luxury consumerism and superficiality in William Wycherley’s The Country Wife

“Is this your buying China?”: Luxury consumerism and superficiality in William Wycherley’s The Country Wife

Following increased maritime trade and a reliance on foreign goods, the commercial revolution that swept through England in the late sixteenth century resulted in an intensified desire for new and hitherto inaccessible luxury commodities. One such commodity, china porcelain, resulted in a “china fever” that continued well into the eighteenth...
Writing Might Save Your Life

Writing Might Save Your Life

Why do we watch movies, listen to audiobooks, and write poetry, songs, and stories?! What makes storytelling compelling to all of us regardless of our knowledge, social classes, and our wide variety of interests? In Jen Sincero’s book, You Are A Badass (2013), she shares personal anecdotes reflecting on her journey to...
Analyzing the Fahrenheit 451 Films by Truffaut and Bahrani

Analyzing the Fahrenheit 451 Films by Truffaut and Bahrani

Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury is one of my favourite books for a multitude of reasons, such as Bradbury’s use of poetic language and its’ timeless, universal themes. Although Fahrenheit 451 was originally published in 1953, over 60 years ago, many themes are still relevant today; specifically censorship, and the loss of...
"Why Does Everyone Like Joe Goldberg?" - Strangership and Privilege in Netflix's You

“Why Does Everyone Like Joe Goldberg?” – Strangership and Privilege in Netflix’s You

The popularity of the Netflix thriller You is garnering increasing media attention from critics, theorists, and fans alike after the second season was released at the beginning of January 2020. Falling under fire for the obsessive attention that the psychopathic protagonist, Joe Goldberg, has gotten from young fans, the depictions of stalking,...
Creating a Story Without Words: Parallels in Story and Music-making

Creating a Story Without Words: Parallels in Story and Music-making

Music and writing have a lot in common. You may have even heard stories themselves be described in terms of music- like beats of action, the rhythm of words, and the melody, or a voice, of an author. Throughout the years, these two disciplines have helped each other to both...
“Such dread as only children can feel”: Childhood trauma in Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre

“Such dread as only children can feel”: Childhood trauma in Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre

“For me,” Jane begins, following the incident in the red room, “the watches of that long night passed in ghastly wakefulness; ear, eye, and mind alike strained by dread: such dread as children only can feel” (Brontë 20). Saturated as Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre is with unnerving or unsettling sensations, what...
The Power of Texts and Images in My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade

The Power of Texts and Images in My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade

NB: The metaphors are shown in capital letters as indicated by Barbara Dancygier and Eve Sweetser’s Figurative Language (2014) text. For every song a musical artist publishes, the artist creates an album cover art to represent the theme and messages conveyed in the music. In The Black Parade (2006) album, written and sung by the American...
Be Still: Slowing Down to Savour Life

Be Still: Slowing Down to Savour Life

“When we lose our sense of wonder we become dissatisfied with who we are,” Madeleine L’Engle says in her book on creation and human identity (Madeleine 51). When I came back to her words this month, I connected just as strongly to them as I had the first time I...
The Polar Express: The Train You Need to Ride Every Year

The Polar Express: The Train You Need to Ride Every Year

Many of Chris Van Allsburg’s books have been projected into a motion picture film such as Zathura (2005) and Jumanji (1995). Van Allsburg’s most memorable book to film project is The Polar Express(1985) which has gained the status of being a Christmas film played each year like Frosty the Snowman (1969) and Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964). But...
“You, Who Have Devastated the Souls of the Living”: Heroes, Hubris, and the Victorian Gothic in Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

“You, Who Have Devastated the Souls of the Living”: Heroes, Hubris, and the Victorian Gothic in Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

Although Christmas time and ghost stories seem to us strange bedfellows, the two were commonly found lying together in the nineteenth century. Ghouls and ghosts, seances and mystics, changelings and revenants were all immensely popular among the Victorians – and their presence was felt year-round in high society. Christmas was...
The 2020 Colloquium!

The 2020 Colloquium!

The English Students’ Association is hosting our sixth annual academic conference, The Colloquium! This conference features presentations from English undergraduate students and faculty members. The Colloquium offers the opportunity to share your work and discuss ideas with other students and faculty members in the English Department. Please see below for...
Latest entries
Colloquium 2020: Call for Editors!

Colloquium 2020: Call for Editors!

Interested in gaining editing experience? Looking to take part in an enriching academic conference? The ESA is looking for editors to assist with the 2020 Colloquium! Editors will have a hand in selecting the pieces that will be presented at the conference, as well as work closely with those selected to refine their work. Some...
Society’s Biggest Joke: Put on a Happy Face

Society’s Biggest Joke: Put on a Happy Face

Both heroes and anti-heroes share a common goal in life to find his or her form of happiness by conquering any problem he or she faces to achieve his or her goal. In Todd Phillips’ film, Joker (2019), the audience is challenged to perceive the protagonist Arthur Fleck, a party clown and failed comedian, as an example...
The Strength To Move Mountains

The Strength To Move Mountains

Literature provides us with some of the strongest women in the history of fiction. The connections that form between the reader and the characters can be felt on a deep and personal level. But what does it mean for a female character to be “strong”? What and how can we learn from these characters about...
The Burden of Being: Exhaustion as Praxis in ‘Intersectional’ Academia

The Burden of Being: Exhaustion as Praxis in ‘Intersectional’ Academia

UBC is an alarmingly inaccessible campus. It was when I began my undergraduate degree on crutches, it continued to be when I transitioned to a cane, and occasionally still is now that I am mobility-aid free in my daily life. Navigating the campus as a freshman is difficult enough, but when construction projects block accessible routes...
Deadly Diction: Examining Emerging Medical Anxieties in “The Body-Snatcher”

Deadly Diction: Examining Emerging Medical Anxieties in “The Body-Snatcher”

Part of the appeal of studying literature in university is bearing witness to the human experience through the centuries. Victorian gothic literature explores a variety of emerging anxieties, and the emergence of medicine as both a profession and an authority throughout the nineteenth century became intertwined with gothic literature. Laurence Talairach-Vielmas argues that nineteenth-century gothic...
"Ink and Red Dye": How Poe 'Fridges' His Women

“Ink and Red Dye”: How Poe ‘Fridges’ His Women

“The death, then, of a beautiful woman is, unquestionably, the most poetical topic in the world.” — Edgar Allan Poe, The Poetic Principle  Poe’s treatment of women, throughout his stories, can be directly tied back to this claim and its implication that women’s lives are determined and valued based on their poetical use. A similar concept...