The first symposium and meeting of the YNCS was enjoyed by a lively group at the University of Huddersfield on Saturday, 8th February 2014. The day was characterised by a positive atmosphere of engagement and cooperation, as well as thoughtful and wide-ranging discussion. The participants came from a range of disciplines, though literature was the area best represented. The areas of Canadian Studies in which we were interested were even more varied, ranging from nationhood and conflict to suburbia and the urban, as related to disciplines such as history and literature, but also, and perhaps more importantly, as explored in inter and transdisciplinary work. After initial introductions, we spent time mapping our various interests and identifying points of connection,which provided us with a series of intersectional points for post-lunch, small-group discussion. Given the noise in the room, it seemed that all groups enjoyed robust and engaging discussions of topics such as borders and boundaries, bodies, and forms. Some fruitful relationships were established and the possibility of research collaboration addressed. The day concluded with some practical round-table discussion of the future development of the network and the hope that more and more people would become involved.
Helped by a wonderful lunch and other refreshments organised by Catherine and Milena, the day was marked by collaboration, cooperation and a shared enthusiasm for all things Canadian. I, for one, certainly look forward to the next event and it’d be great to see all sorts of scholars there, extending the disciplinary mix even further.