Graduate Profiles

McGiffin, Emily



  • Year Entered: 2013

    Student Info

    Dissertation Title

    Land, empire and the poetry of defiance: the imbongi as a voice for justice in South Africa

    Comprehensive Areas

    • Geographies of capitalism
    • Post-colonial studies with emphasis on Africa
    • Postcolonial Ecocriticism

    Supervisory Committee

    • Dr. Catriona Sandilands (FES)
    • Dr. Ilan Kapoor (FES)
    • Dr. Thembela Kepe (University of Toronto)

    Previous Education

  • BSc. Biology (Hons.) Geography (Minor), University of Victoria, British Columbia
  • MSc. Managing Rural Development, University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies
  • Publications



    McGiffin, Emily. 2014. Subduction Zone. Pedlar Press. St. John’s, Newfoundland.

    2012. Between Dusk and Night. Brick Books. London, Ontario.

    Edited Volumes

    McGiffin, Emily. 2017. “Work Denatured”. In: T. Goward and R. Bringhurst (Eds.). Speak to the Wild. Regina, SK: University of Regina Press. [submitted]

    Manuscripts in Submission

    McGiffin, Emily. 2016. The izibongo of resistance: Praise poets, trade unions and the violence of extractive capitalism. Green Letters, 20:2.

    Book Reviews

    2016. A New Index for Predicting Catastrophes by Madhur Anand and Endagered Hydrocarbons by Lesley Battler. Arc Poetry Magazine, 78.

    2016. Invasive Species by Claire Caldwell. The Goose: Literature, Arts, Environment and Culture in Canada.

    2015. Society decamps there: Fabienne Calvert Fileteau’s Second Growth. Arc Poetry Magazine, 77.

    2015. Apocalypse happens: An iteration of the end in Sarah Lang’s For Tamara. Arc Poetry Magazine, 76.

    2015. Sybil Unrest by Larissa Lai and Rita Wong. The Goose: Literature, Arts, Environment and Culture in Canada, 13:2.

    2014. Memory and mourning in Anne Michaels’ Correspondences. Arc Poetry Magazine, 74.

    2013. A World Clad in Brutality: Rachel Lebowitz’s Cottonopolis. Arc Poetry Magazine, 72.

    2013. Sexual Wilderness: Sarah de Leeuw’s Geographies of a Lover. Arc Poetry Magazine, 71.

    2013. Young Adults Attain Untidy Denoument: Whitetail Shooting Gallery. Coastal Spectator.

    2013. Allegheny, BC and Grid. The Malahat Review. 182.

    2011. Deepwater Vee. Green Book Reviews.  

    2011. Recovering a Lost River. Green Book Reviews.

    Edited Literary Journals

    2014. Accessory. Contemporary Verse 2, 36: 5.

    2013. Vorkuta. Arc Poetry Magazine, 72.

    2013. A pasture at the edge of the woods. Lake: A Journal of Arts and Environment, 8.

    2012. Two Poems. The Goose: Literature, Arts, Environment and Culture in Canada, 11.

    2012. Two Poems. Prairie Fire, 33:1.

    2012. Seven Songs for Spatsizi. Geez, 24.

    2012. Two Poems. Qwerty, 27.

    2012. Two Poems. The Fiddlehead, 251.

    2011. Fall. The New Quarterly, 120.

    2011. Cuttlefish Bone. The Antigonish Review, 165.

    2011. Learning Swadeshi. Room Magazine, 33:4.

    2010. Tumbler. Contemporary Verse 2, 32:4.

    Other Publications                                                                                                

    McGiffin, Emily. 2015. Two poems. Women and Environments International Magazine, 94/95.

    2013. 3D Printers and the future of food. Small Farm Canada Magazine. Jan/Feb.

    2013. Modelling forest stewardship. Northword Magazine. Feb/Mar.

    2012. The flying shuttle. Canada Writes “Close Encounters with Science” series.

    2011. Coffee as sacred space. Geez Magazine, 23.

    2011. Here come in vitro meats! (but don’t sell the stock trailer yet). Small Farm Canada Magazine. Sept/Oct.

    2011. Shale gas blues: quest for energy trumping farms across Canada. Small Farm Canada Magazine. Sept/Oct.

    2011. Barn loft press: entrepreneurs in small farm marketing. Small Farm Canada Magazine. July/Aug.

    2011. International report touts potential of small farms. Small Farm Canada Magazine. May/June.

    2011. Shakespeare in Smithers. Northword Magazine. Feb/Mar.

    2010. Size isn’t everything. Alternatives Journal. Volume 36(2).

    2010. Understanding the seed business. Small Farm Canada Magazine. Nov/Dec.

    2010. MPs fight to limit damage caused by GM crops. Small Farm Canada Magazine. July/Aug.

    2010. Micro-bakeries help close the circle. Northword Magazine. Aug/Sept.

    2010. Seeds of discontent. Small Farm Canada Magazine. May/June.

    2010. Introduction to participatory breeding. Small Farm Canada Magazine. May/June.

    2010. Climate change threatens yields. Small Farm Canada Magazine. Jan/Feb.

    Services & Experience

    Services & Experience

    Teaching Experience

    Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University

    • 2016 Transnational Writing and the Politics of Colonialism, Empire and Development (Course Director)
    • 2013, 2014 Tropical Conservation and Sustainable Development (TA)
    • 2014 Human/Non-human Animal Relations (TA)

    Northwest Community College, Smithers, British Columbia

    • 2012 Computer Science 111, University Credit program (Course Director)
    • 2012 Terrestrial Ecosystem Monitoring (Course Director)


    2015  ASLE (Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment) Environmental Creative Writing Book Award

    2015 Ontario Graduate Scholarship

    2015 Han Shan Sih Buddhist Society Scholarship

    2014 CBC Poetry Prize Long-list

    2013  Adrienne Pocock Memorial Scholarship

    2013  Canadian Authors’ Association Poetry Prize Finalist

    2013  League of Canadian Poets’ Raymond Souster Award Finalist

    2013  Banff Centre for the Arts scholarship

    2012  Wye College Agricola Fund Research Scholarship

    2012  CBC Poetry Prize Finalist

    2011  Association for Nonprofit and Social Economy Research Graduate Research Award

    2009 Canadian Social Economy Hub Emerging Leaders’ Research Scholarship                 

    2008 Writers’ Trust of Canada/RBC Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers            

    2008 Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholarship (declined)

    Conference & Presentations

    Conference & Presentations

    Conference Presentations

    2016. Cause and affect: Xhosa poetics of resistance and hope. Association for Literature, Environment and Culture in Canada. Kingston, ON. June 15-18.

    2016. Neoliberal land reform and the vocal dispossessed: the voice of the imbongi in the quest for social and environmental justice in post-apartheid South Africa. Fourth Annual Symposium of Interdisciplinary Scholarship in Land Use and Ethics: Poetics. State University of New York College of Enviromental Science and Forestry. Syracuse, New York. June 10-12.

    2015. The izibongo of resistance: praise poets, trade unions and the violence of extractive capitalism. The Association for the Study of Literature and Environment. June 23-27.

    2015. Performing change: praise poets in the South African trade union movement. Canadian Association for African Studies. June 3-5.

    2015. The black mamba rises: extraction, resistance and the Durban Workers’ Cultural Local. Critical Ethnic Studies Association. April 30-May 3.

    2013. Approaches to ecosystem valuation in the Carood Watershed, Bohol Philippines. Canadian Association for Studies in International Development. June 4.

    2013. Integrating participatory approaches into the contingent valuation method. Environmental Studies Association of Canada. June 4.

    2012. Multi-stakeholder approaches to ecosystem valuation in the Carood watershed, Philippines. Bulkley Valley Centre for Natural Resources Research and Management Seminar Series. Smithers, BC. November 7.

    2011. Towards a Governance Framework for the Skeena Watershed. Association of Nonprofit and Social Economy Research (ANSER) Conference. 2011 Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities. Fredericton, New Brunswick. June 3.

    2010. Food Communities and Rural Economic Development. Canadian Social Economy Student Network Conference. 2010 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Montreal, Quebec. June 1.

    Invited Lectures

    2013 Story, song place: A forum. Speak to the Wild. Upper Clearwater, BC. September 3-8.

    Why FES?