Michele Holmgren is an Associate Professor of Literature in the Department of English, Languages, and Cultures at Mount Royal University in Calgary, Alberta. As well as being an authority on Canadian and Irish literary nationalism (and owner of the best shoes in the Canadian Academy), she is also a Past President of the Canadian Association for Irish Studies (CAIS) and the current editor-in-chief of the Canadian Journal of Irish Studies. You can read more about Michele on her Mount Royal profile here.
Who is your favourite academic?
Declan Kiberd: eloquent and thoughtful about any Irish literature he discusses as well as perceptive about how literary studies relate to history and also illuminate larger questions about Irish studies
What are you reading for work and/or for leisure these days?
Mark Abley, Conversations With a Dead Man: The Legacy of Duncan Campbell Scott for work and pleasure; he brings the imagination of a poet and the expertise of a scholar to an exploration of the art and the character of Duncan Campbell Scott, a poet who also directed the Indian Affairs policies in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The essay collection The Other side(s) of 150: Untold Stories and Critical Approaches to History, Literature, and Identity in Canada. For pure, unadulterated pleasure, the Trickster Trilogy by Eden Robinson, which I’ve not finished.
What podcast do you recommend?
What is your favourite archive or library?
National Library of Ireland and the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland Heritage Centre
What book or movie changed your life?
Who Do You Think You Are? By Alice Munro
Do you play music while you work? If so, what?
Baroque music by any artist, particularly Bach
What do you know now that you wish you had known at the beginning of your career/degree?
That grant applications aren’t a lot of work for nothing. Sometimes you get money if you do one.
What is your favourite way to de-stress?
Walking around the Glenmore Reservoir: a 17km stroll through woods, by water, and with unsurpassed views of the Rocky Mountains.