Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
|Alma mater||Queen’s University, York University|
He is a professor at Brock University with a speciality in Canadian and avant-garde literature. He is the author of seven books of poetry, editor of eight books of experimental writing in Canada, and author of the monograph Avant-Garde Canadian Literature: The Early Manifestations (University of Toronto Press, 2013). He was named the Craig Dobbin Professor of Canadian Studies at University College Dublin in 2018.
Life and work
Betts was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, but was raised in Toronto, Ontario. He graduated from Queen’s University with a BA in English in 1998. He studied with Stephen Scobie, Misao Dean, Smaro Kamboureli, and George Bowering at the University of Victoria, where he graduated with an MA in 2000. Betts received his PhD in English literature from York University, supervised by John Lennox, Steve McCaffery, and Ray Ellenwood. He is a Professor at Brock University with a speciality in Canadian and Avant-Garde Literature. He is the author of seven books of poetry, editor of eight books of experimental writing in Canada, and author of the monograph Avant-Garde Canadian Literature: The Early Manifestations (University of Toronto Press, 2013). He writes for The Canadian Encyclopaedia and his work is included in the anthologies Against Expression: An Anthology of Conceptual Writing (2011) and The Sonnets: Translating & Rewriting Shakespeare (2012). In addition to his books, Betts is the author of chapbooks and text collaborations with visual artists, including Matt Donovan and Hallie Siegel, and Neil Hennessy. He lives in St. Catharines, Ontario with his wife and two children and directs The Centre for Canadian Studies at Brock University.
The University of Toronto Quarterly wrote, "Betts has created not only an invaluable archive of what it means to be 'modern' in Canada - the writings read like a cross-section of compacted layers social, material, and spiritual crisis in urban and rural Canada...but to the wider context of aesthetic, political, and spiritual fault lines of modern culture in English Canada." In 2014, Betts was named the Chancellor's Chair for Research Excellence at Brock University. In 2017, he received a City of St. Catharines Arts Award ("Jury's Pick") and in 2018, he was named the Craig Dobbin Professor of Canadian Studies at the University College of Dublin, Ireland.
- Avant-Garde Canadian Literature: The Early Manifestations. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2013.
- If Language. Toronto: BookThug, 2005.
- Haikube. Produced in collaboration with Matt Donovan and Hallie Siegal. Toronto: BookThug, 2006.
- The Others Raisd in Me. Toronto: Pedlar Press, 2009.
- Psychic Geographies and Other Topics. Toronto: Quattro Press, 2010.
- The Obvious Flap. Co-written with Gary Barwin. Toronto: BookThug, 2011.
- This Is Importance: A Student’s Guide to Literature. Hamilton: Wolsak and Wynn, 2013.
- Boycott. Los Angeles: Make Now Press, 2013.
- Editor and Introduction. Space Between Her Lips: The Poetry of Margaret Christakos. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2017.
- Co-Editor and Introduction with Paul Hjartarson and Kristine Smitka. Counterblasting Canada: Marshall McLuhan, Wyndham Lewis, Wilfred Watson, and Sheila Watson. Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 2016.
- Co-Editor with Derek Beaulieu. Avant Canada: More Useful Knowledge. An anthology of contemporary Canadian experimental writing. Calgary: NO Press, 2014.
- Co-Editor and Afterword with Derek Beaulieu. RUSH: What Fuckan Theory; A Study uv Langwage. By bill bissett. Toronto: BookThug, 2012.
- Editor and Introduction. Lawren Harris In the Ward: His Poetry and Painting. Toronto: Exile Editions, 2007. Second edition modified to Contrasts: Lawren Harris In the Ward: A Book of Poetry and Paintings, 2012.
- Editor and introduction. After Exile: A Raymond Knister Poetry Reader. Toronto: Exile Editions, 2003. Second edition 2011.
- Editor and introduction. The Wrong World: Bertram Brooker’s Stories and Essays. Ottawa: The University of Ottawa Press, 2009.
- Assistant Editor. W.W.E. Ross: Irrealities, Sonnets & Laconics. Editor Barry Callaghan. Toronto: Exile Editions, 2003.
Artworks and Exhibitions
- Haikube with Matt Donovan and Hallie Siegel. Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto 2007.
- Petits Genres with Matt Donovan and Hallie Siegel, Vanessa Place, and Christian Bök. Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto 2012.
- Exquisite Corp. Art Under Glass, St. Catharines 2011.
- The Twelve Trials of Jason Chimera with Neil Hennessy. Niagara Artists Centre, St. Catharines 2009.
- Signs of Our Discontent. With Arnold McBay. In the Soil Arts Festival, St. Catharines 2018.
- Rogal, Stan (April 21, 2010). "Poetry Month: Stan Rogal on Gregory Betts". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
- "Celebration of poet's life to be held at museum". Niagara Advance Magazine. February 22, 2012. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
- "Gregory Betts". Vancouver 125 Poetry Conference
- Historical Perspectives on Canadian Publishing, "Gregory Betts", McMaster University
- Gregory Betts, Brock University.
- 2 Jacket Magazine "Gregory Betts"
- Gregory Betts, Electronic Poetry Center
- The Sonnets: Translating & Rewriting Shakespeare (2012)
- "Margaret Christakos", The Canadian Encyclopaedia
- "Larissa Lai", The Canadian Encyclopaedia
- Gregory Betts, Open Book Toronto.
- "Interview with Gregory Betts" Canadian Literature Symposium, 2008
- "The Wrong World: Selected Stories and Essays (review)", University of Toronto Quarterly Volume 80, Number 2, Spring 2011 pp. 316-318
-  City of St. Catharines Arts Award ("Jury's Pick")
- Avant-garde Canadian Literature: The Early Manifestations (2013) Gregory Betts University of Toronto Press ISBN 9781442643772
- Smulders, Marilyn (April 29, 2008). "A Canlit champion Prof. Dean Irvine shines light on earlier generation". Dal News. Retrieved 10 July 2013.