Luc Lacourcière

Luc Lacourcière. Ethnographer, folklorist, writer, teacher, b St-Victor, Beauce, Que, 18 Oct 1910, d Quebec City 15 May 1989; BA (Laval) 1932, L LITT (Laval) 1934, honorary D LITT (McGill) 1966, honorary doctorate in ethnography (Memorial) 1975, honorary D LITT (Laurentian) 1977.

Lacourcière, Luc

Luc Lacourcière. Ethnographer, folklorist, writer, teacher, b St-Victor, Beauce, Que, 18 Oct 1910, d Quebec City 15 May 1989; BA (Laval) 1932, L LITT (Laval) 1934, honorary D LITT (McGill) 1966, honorary doctorate in ethnography (Memorial) 1975, honorary D LITT (Laurentian) 1977. After classical and university studies in Quebec City, he went to France and also spent 1936-7 as a teacher at the Collège St-Charles in Porrentruy, Switzerland. He taught Latin 1938-9 at the Collège Bourget of Rigaud, Que, and was assistant director of the French summer courses 1938-48 at Laval University. He received a scholarship from the Royal Society of Canada in 1939 and began studying anthropology in relation to folklore with Marius Barbeau at the National Museum (Canadian Museum of Civilization) in Ottawa; he also visited certain US universities to consult specialists.

Lacourcière taught French literature 1940-63 at Laval University and lectured 1941-2 for the CBC program 'Radio-Collège'. On a grant from the Guggenheim Foundation he spent some time 1943-4 examining the systems at the Library of Congress, Washington, DC, and the Harvard U Library in Cambridge, Mass. Besides teaching folklore and ethnography 1944-78 at Laval University, he was director of the department of Canadian studies 1963-71. He established the Archives de folklore in 1944 and was its director until 1975. In addition, he initiated and edited the Archives de folklore publication series, and his own numerous articles for the series included a critical study of the popular song 'Les Écoliers de Pontoise' (vol 1, 1946) and writings on Canadian children's rhymes (vol 3, 1948) and burlesque songs (vol 4, 1949). Conrad Laforte and Roger Matton were among his collaborators. With a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation in 1956, he began compiling an indexed catalogue, Bibliographie raisonnée des traditions populaires françaises d'Amérique. He organized the 14th Congress of the IFMC in Quebec City in 1961.

Lacourcière participated in several congresses and gave numerous lectures in France (including several in 1953 and 1965 at the Institut scientifique franco-canadien), the USA, and Canada. He directed more than a hundred masters' and doctoral theses between 1941 and 1978. He was elected member of the Royal Society of Canada in 1962. A member of the Canada Council 1962-5 and then of the Société des Dix, he was awarded the Prix Duvernay and the medal of the St-Jean-Baptiste Society of Montreal in 1969. He was made a Companion of the Order of Canada in 1970 and Fellow of the American Folklore Society in 1973 and received the Canadian Music Council Medal in 1974 and the Order of Merit and medal of the St-Jean-Baptiste Society of Quebec City in 1976. He was named honorary president of the Folklore Studies Association of Canada in 1976. In 1987 he was awarded the '3 juillet 1608' prize by the Conseil de la langue française du Québec.

Writings

Luc Lacourcière - and Savard, F.-A. L'Histoire et le folklore (Montreal 1945)

'Le Noël des animaux,' Archives de folklore (Quebec City 1950)

- and Savard, F.-A. 'Canadian folk songs collected at Baie-des-Rochers (Charlevoix),' Annual Report of the National Museum of Canada for the Fiscal Year 1949-1950, Bulletin 123 (Ottawa 1951)

'Nos cousins chantent,' La Chanson du pays (Paris 1953)

'Bibliographie raisonnée de l'anthropologie canadienne,' Mémoires de la Société généalogique canadienne-française, vol 9, Jul-Oct 1958

'Les transformations d'une chanson folklorique: du Moine tremblant au Rapide-Blanc,' Recherches sociographiques, vol 1, no. 4, 1960

'The present state of French-Canadian folklore studies,' JAF, vol 74, Oct-Dec 1961

- and Savard, F.-A. Le Folklore acadien (Toronto 1968)


Further Reading

  • Cass-Beggs, Michael. 'Hommage à Luc Lacourcière,' CMB, 9, Autumn-Winter 1974

    Dupont, Jean-Claude, ed. Mélanges en l'honneur de Luc Lacourcière (Montreal 1978)

    Dionne, René. 'Hommage à Luc Lacourcière,' Lettres québécoises, 13, Feb 1979

    'Entrevue: Luc Lacourcière,' interview with Adrien Thério, ibid

    Laforte, Conrad. 'Luc Lacourcière, 1910-1989,' Mémoires de la Société royale du Canada, 5th series, vol 4 (1989)

    Pichette, Jean-Pierre. 'Hommage à Luc Lacourcière 1910-89,' Contact-Acadie, 14, Dec 1989; repr in Association for Canadian Studies Newsletter, vol 12, Spring 1990