The latest issue features photography by architecture student Rotem Yaniv, literary non-fiction by French student Tan Nhat Ngo, and poetry by French Instructor Francine Benny.
- Morgan Faulkner (Université Laval)
- Natalie Mezey (Carleton University)
- Matt Rushton (Carleton University)
Mot Dit Grows Up
Over four years, the French-language literary magazine Mot Dit has grown into a journal of international francophone creative writing and scholarly criticism.
The magazine was founded in 2007 by grad student Natalie Mezey and undergrad Morgan Faulkner, both in the Department of French. With support from the department, it began as a sister publication to In/Words, a literary journal produced by students in Carleton’s English Department. Mot Dit was a showcase for young francophone and francophile poets, writers and artists at Carleton.
Faulkner (MA French, 2010) and Mezey (MA French, 2008) have long since graduated but still edit Mot Dit along with Matt Rushton, another French department alumnus, (2010), who joined the magazine in 2008 to help produce the magazine’s third issue.
Now in its sixth issue, Mot Dit has grown to include writers, scholars, artists and photographers from across North America, Europe and Africa.
“It’s become more sophisticated,” says Rushton, now the production editor. “We’ve come to include more critical essays and literary reviews and the writing, in general, has matured.”
Rushton points out, however, that one of his favorite pieces—a short horror tale from Mot Dit 5 titled Le chien fantôme — was written by an eight-year-old second-grader from Montreal. “We initially thought it was submitted by a professor under a pseudonym,” Rushton says, “and I praised its clear writing and economy of words. I still do! It’s great little ghost story.”
Contributions vary with each issue. Mot Dit 4, for example, proudly featured poems by Ottawa poet Angèle Bassolé-Ouédraogo and by poet and Carleton University President Roseanne O’Reilly Runte.
“Mot Dit thrives because its founders and editors are students. Faculty act as advisers and proofreaders, but this is a student initiative. It is also encouraging that editors’ and supporters’ interests lie not only in creative writing, but in literary criticism and literary production,” says Catherine Khordoc, chair of the Department of French. “These interests are part of the specialization of our department and expertise of our researchers.”