Karen Houle

Photo by Judith Weissmann.

Karen Houle hails from Northern Ontario but calls Guelph home. Her twin girls, Kuusta Laird Barry and Cézanne Houle, are a quarter century old and live in Guelph too, with their kids. Houle’s undergraduate degree is in Biology and Chemistry. She is now an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Guelph, and adjunct graduate faculty in the Schools of Fine Art and Music & the Guelph-Humber School of Creative Writing. Her areas of specialization are political theory, ethics, environmental philosophy, philosophy and literature, and feminist thought. She co-edited (with Jim Vernon) Hegel and Deleuze: Together Again for the First Time (Northwestern, 2013). Her monograph, Responsibility, Complexity and Abortion: Toward a New Image of Ethical Thought (Lexington Books) came out at the end of 2013. She recently translated, from French, a book on improvisation (PS Guelph, September 2014) called Improvising Freely: The ABCs of An Experience. She has published numerous academic and non-academic articles on topics ranging from plant communication to Emmanuel Levinas, animal tracking to Michel Foucault, from watershed ecology to Jacques Derrida, from canoe flotillas on the Tobique River to Luce Irigaray, from rape to Steve Reich. She is also the author of two books of poetry: Ballast (House of Anansi, 2001) and During (Gaspereau Press, 2008). Ballast was nominated by the Canadian League of Poets for the Lampert Prize (best first book of poetry by a Canadian writer). She is the inaugural Eastern Comma Writer-in-Residence at North House, on the rare Charitable Research Reserve in Blair, Ontario, hoping to write a collection of solar-powered poetry.