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Jenna Butler Ph.D.

Jenna Butler
Humanities & Social Sciences
School of Arts and Culture

Dr. Jenna Butler teaches Creative Writing in the English program at Red Deer Polytechnic. She is the author of three award-winning books of poetry and a critically acclaimed book of ecological essays, with three new books forthcoming in 2018/19. Butler’s poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and environmental writing appears in journals and anthologies around the world, including, most recently, Robert Kroetsch: Essays on His Works (Guernica, 2017) and The Compass (UK, 2016). She has held teaching and administrative roles at Edmonton Public Schools, MacEwan University, and the University of Alberta before joining the faculty of Red Deer College in 2014. Butler’s work as a writer in residence has taken her from America’s Deep South to Ireland’s rugged Ring of Kerry, and from volcanic Tenerife to the Norwegian Arctic Circle onboard a barquentine sailing ship, exploring human impact on the places we call home.


Ph.D. (Creative and Critical Writing), University of East Anglia, United Kingdom
M.A. Distinction (Creative Writing: Poetry), University of East Anglia, United Kingdom
B.Ed. Distinction (Secondary Education, English), University of Alberta
B.A. (English), University of Alberta

Main Areas of Teaching

Creative writing (poetry, fiction, non-fiction, memoir), environmental writing/eco-criticism, sustainability, and writing pedagogy.

Scholarly Activity

Selected Publications:

  • Butler, Jenna. Revery: A Year of Bees. Wolsak and Wynn (forthcoming)
  • Butler, Jenna. Magnetic North. University of Alberta Press (forthcoming)
  • Butler, Jenna. A Profession of Hope: Farming on the Edge of the Grizzly Trail. Wolsak and Wynn, 2015.
  • Butler, Jenna. Seldom Seen Road. NeWest Press, 2013.
  • Butler, Jenna. Wells. University of Alberta Press, 2012.
  • Butler, Jenna. Aphelion. NeWest Press, 2010.

Conference Presentations:

  • The Soapbox, Please: Mediated Spaces and Nature as a Speaking Subject (Association of Literature, Environment, and Culture in Canada Conference, Canada, 2016)
  • Women Poets and Mentoring (The League of Canadian Poets Conference, Canada, 2014)
  • Creative Writing in the Non-Creative Writing Classroom (Great Writing International Creative Writing Conference, UK, 2013)
  • Creative Smuggling: Creative Strategies for the Academic Classroom (National Association of Writers in Education Conference, UK, 2012

Community Involvement:

  • Board editor, NeWest Press
  • Series editor (poetry), NeWest Press
  • Board member and Treasurer, Olive Reading Series
  • Guest instructor, Writers Guild of Alberta/Devonian Botanic Garden
  • Guest instructor, Alexandra Writers Centre, Calgary
  • Guest instructor, Edmonton Poetry Festival

Current Research:

  • Canada’s uranium history (Délįne and the Sahtúot’ine, with Mandy Bayha)
  • Women, beekeeping, and international community-building
  • Feminism, writers of colour, and voice
  • Landscape and grief

Professional and/or RDP Leadership:

  • Co-Chair, Perspectives: Canada in the World Lecture Series
  • Member, AGORA Undergraduate Conference Committee
  • Member, Recognition of Faculty Excellence Committee
  • Member, Marking Assistance Committee

Professional Memberships

  • Professional Member, League of Canadian Poets
  • Professional Member, Writers Union of Canada
  • Professional Member, Canadian Authors Association
  • Professional Member, Writers Guild of Alberta
  • Professional Member, Canadian Creative Writers and Writing Programs
  • Professional Member, Association for Literature, Environment, and Culture in Canada

Awards and Honours:

  • Gold Medal, Living Now Book Awards (2016)
  • Recognition of Scholarly Activity Award, Red Deer College (2016)
  • Canadian Authors Association Exporting Alberta Award (2015)
  • High Plains Book Awards, Finalist (2015)
  • YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee, Educator (2014)
  • Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Arts Award (2014)
  • Creative and Scholarly Achievement Award, MacEwan University (2014)
  • Raymond Souster Memorial Award, Finalist (2013)
  • Stephen G. Stephansson Award, Finalist (2012)
  • Canadian Authors Association Exporting Alberta Award (2011)
  • Six Alberta Foundation for the Arts Grants to Professional Writers
  • Two Canada Council for the Arts Travel Grants
  • One Edmonton Arts Council Travel Grant


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