Interdisciplinary collectives

Our research reaches across academic disciplines. Members of the faculty are involved in a number of research collectives, including the following:

Asian Canadian Working Group

(, Department of Women's Studies and , Department of History)

The University of Victoria Asian Canadian working group is open to scholars, students and community activists who have interests in transnational, cross-cultural and interdisciplinary studies of Asia, ethnic Asian groups in Canada, and the Pacific Rim of Canada.

Its provisional purpose is to promote curriculum development, community activities and scholarly research on these subjects by organizing workshops and sumposia and facilitating communications and colloborative works within and beyond the University of Victoria.

We are still pondering the meaning and doing of Asian Canadian studies. For now, it is a point of departure, not a fixed destination already known. Our travels, interests, and identities might entail journeys crisscrossing "far, central, middle, south, southeast, and east" Asia and points in, beyond and around the Pacific and Canada.

Critical Theory

(, Department of French)

Construing its topic broadly, this group comprises participants from all over the humanities and fine arts, as well as social sciences. The primary activity of the group is to read primary texts of special interest to the majority of the participants. The focus is on very contemporary works, rather than background texts.

We welcome new participants and do not assume competence in previous texts we have read as a prerequisite for participating in whatever we're currently reading. By drawing on the linguistic competencies of the various members, we hope to compare translated versions of these texts with the originals in Russian, French, German and Italian.

The texts will change according to the interests of the group. We will meet at least once a month, though more frequently if the will is there.

Early Modern

(, Department of History)

The Early Modern research collective meets monthly to discuss the research in progress of its more than forty faculty members. Guest speakers from other universities are invited to speak to the group once or twice a year. Collaborative projects among members are also being developed. Website: Early Modern Research Collective.

Editor! Editor!

(, Department of French)

"Auteur! Auteur!" À la fin de la représentation, il arrive que le public interrompe ses applaudissements pour appeler sur scène l'auteur de la pièce, resté dans l'ombre des coulisses ou les abîmes du silence. Au cri d'Éditeur! Éditeur!, nous appelons au front du livre et du texte, la figure discrète de celui qui publie, met en lumière ou en forme, donne à lire, établit, annote, rassemble, reprend: se faire oublier est son plus glorieux rôle dans l'aventure du texte. Editor! Editor! se réveille après un long sommeil d'une année. 

History of Medicine

(, Department of French and , Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies)

The UVic History of Medicine research collective is interdisciplinary and interdepartmental, with the goal of joining ideas and work that pertain to history of medicine and to the definition of the discipline. The collective welcomes students, professors, researchers and members of the community. It coordinates existing work at and around UVic in History of Medicine, including presentations and debates. 

Human-Computer Interaction and the Book

(, Department of English)

Comprised of some 35 local, national, and international researchers and over 20 academic and 20 industry stakeholders at the forefront of computing in the humanities, text analysis, information studies, usability, and interface design—those who are best-poised to understand the nature of the human record as it intersects with the computer—this working group has begun to identify the central issues relating to the digitisation of the human record and to act on that identification.

Possibilities for human-computer interaction and the electronic book may be examined from a range of interrelated perspectives, which are approached in several essential ways: via processes that seek the identification, quantification, and evaluation of print and electronic books in terms of their features and their uses; via processes that explore the material, symbolic and formal aspects of the book, toward the end of computational modeling; and via a process of prototyping computational models and simulations of the book, both literal models and metaphoric. 

Humayma Excavation Tourism Developent and Museum Display Research Collective

(, Department of Greek and Roman Studies)

Since June 2003 Professor John Peter Oleson has been coordinating a group of Canadian and Jordanian scholars, diplomats, and non-governmental organizations working on the enhancement of tourism in the Hisma, the spectacular desert region around Humayma, where he has been excavating. This project is an excellent example of the important role archaeology can play in the social and economic progress of a developing country, and the leverage that a relatively small grant can exert in eliciting government funding to assist that development. Staff from the Maltwood Gallery have been involved, along with faculty at Queen's and Guelph Universities, the Department of Antiquities of Jordan, the Tourism Division of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority, the Canadian Embassy and the Canada Fund in Jordan, and the Friends of Archaeology in Jordan.

Italianistica: Italian Studies In and Out of Italy

(, Hispanic and Italian Studies)

This interdisciplinary research group will explore the multifaceted aspects of Italian culture both in Italy and abroad.  Welcoming researchers from the humanities and social sciences whose work relates to the Bel Paese, the group is intended to foster the study of Italian literature, art and music, their reception outside of Italy, and their impact on related fields of knowledge.  We will hold meetings and organize cultural events centering on Italianistica. No knowledge of Italian is necessary.

Latin American Research Group

(, Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies)

The Latin America Research Group is a forum for scholars pursuing research on Latin America. It promotes interdisciplinary research projects, organizes conferences, and develops curricula. It supports the University's Latin American Studies Program. LARG's website and mailing list provide information regarding relevant academic and cultural events. 

Law, Culture and History

(, Department of Greek & Roman Studies, , Department of History)

A forum for researchers whose work lies at the intersection of law and other disciplines, such as anthropology, gender studies, history, or literature. We invite students and professors from all departments and faculties to meet for information discussions of pre-circulated works in progress. 

Linguistic Studies: Indigenous Language of the Northwest

(, Department of Linguistics)

Since 1992 the group has sponsored workshops and colloquia bringing together researchers in the Victoria-Vancouver-Seattle area investigating language structures of Indigenous languages of the North/West. 

Mothering Studies

(, Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies)

The aim of this interdisciplinary research group is to interrogate cultural constructions of motherhood and individual mothering practices across disciplinary boundaries, spanning literature, history, women's and cultural studies, art, cinema, anthropology, psychology, sociology, and law.  The group is an open forum where researchers and social activists can share ideas and plan cultural activities.

Pre-Digital Books

(, Department of French and , Department of English)

Pre-digital Books invites researchers, instructors, students, and members of the community at large to explore and share the holdings of the Special Collections of McPherson Libraries. Since the collection includes manuscripts, early printed books, rare books, maps, magazines, and records, there is lots of material to investigate. 

Organized as a seminar, the Pre-digital Books Research Collective will meet monthly in the library for show-and-tell presentations followed by discussion. It will work in close collaboration with the librarians and the community of book lovers in Victoria. The presentation program and other information will be posted on our website.


(, Department of French)

Seminarium is devoted to the discovery and practice of Medieval Latin on campus. Members meet once a month and translate together a piece of literature. 

Speech Perception

(, Department of Linguistics)

The speech perception group brings together faculty and students conducting experimental research on how various groups of people (e.g. second language learners) perceive speech. The primary goal of the group is to provide a venue for discussing work in progress, in order to receive and provide feedback on all aspects of speech perception experiments, from setting up the stimuli to interpreting results. Although we are currently all in the department of Linguistics, we welcome new members and drop-ins from other departments as well.

TRUTH: Teaching and Research Using Technologies in the Humanities

(, Department of French or , Department of Germanic & Slavic Studies)

This research collective sets out to share information and experience, and critically reflect on the use of technology in the Humanities. Our focus is on practice and research, and we would like to develop a network of people from the Faculty of Humanities who are using or are interested in using technology (from creating a website to using wikis, blogs, podcastings, etc), and invite them to share their experience and research on creating new learning environments and communities.

We meet once a month to discuss practices, research and share books and plan on organizing a workshop with an invited speaker once a year.

Everyone interested in reflecting on his or her practices in the classroom and research and discussing learning, instruction and curriculum and development is welcome to join us.

Urban Studies Research Collective

(, Department of History)

The University of Victoria has both distinguished senior and promising junior scholars whose research and teaching focus on cities. This concentration of scholars presents exciting opportunities to benefit our students, encourage innovative research, and connect with the wider community of Victoria. The urban studies research collective proposes to organize regular discussions of the prospects and challenges that face cities, both large and small. The collective will organize a annual speaker series, actively encouraging both student and public participation. It also proposes to organize a smaller reading group that will bring specialists together to discuss seminal theoretical and empirical research in urban studies.  With cities looming ever larger on political and academic agendas, the urban studies research collective aims to encourage engagement in the most pressing and fascinating facets of urban life. For more information, contact Jordan Stanger-Ross in the history department.

Victoria Colloquium on Political, Social and Legal Theory

(, Department of Philosophy & , Department of Philosophy)

The Victoria Colloquium on Political, Social and Legal Theory is a forum for regular interdisciplinary exchanges on topics in political, social and legal philosophy. Each year the colloquium brings six theorists to UVic to speak on a work in progress that is circulated in advance. A pre-seminar is held in the week before each visit to discuss readings from the theorist's canon that are relevant to the upcoming talk. Participants in the seminar include faculty, graduate students and law students. Visit the colloquium's website for more information.

Victorian Studies

(, Department of English)

The Victorian group is an informal colloquium for graduate students and faculty working in 19th-Century British Studies. The Victorian era is an exciting and dynamic research area at UVic; for example, members of the group have editorial and advisory board roles with Victorian Review, Canada's only Victorian Studies journal. We have members from History, Art History, and English, and would warmly welcome those from other disciplines. The primary function is to serve as a sounding board for work in progress by grad students and faculty (conference papers, articles in preparation) in order to offer constructive criticism in a collegial setting. We also are keen to promote and support interdisciplinary research in the field. New members and drop-ins are welcome.