Browse "Literature"

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30 Canadian Books

To celebrate its 30th anniversary, The Canadian Encyclopedia created 30 lists of 30 things that make us proud to be Canadian, from famous people and historic events, to iconic foods and influential artists.

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Nobel Prizes and Canada

The Nobel Prizes are awarded annually for achievements that have significantly benefitted humankind. The prizes are among the highest international honours and are awarded in six categories: physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, peace, and economics. They are administered by the Nobel Foundation and awarded by institutions in Sweden and Norway. Seventeen Canadians have won Nobel Prizes, excluding Canadian-born individuals who gave up their citizenship and members of organizations that have won the peace prize.

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Authors and Their Milieu

Contemporary Canadian writers have won prestigious awards and honours at home and abroad. Among the most publicized of these events was Prix Goncourt awarded to Antonine Maillet for Pélagie-la-Charette.

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Anne of Green Gables

Lucy Maud Montgomery’s first novel, Anne of Green Gables (1908), became an instant bestseller and has remained in print for more than a century, making the character of Anne Shirley a mythic icon of Canadian culture. The book has sold an estimated 50 million copies worldwide, been translated into at least 36 languages, as well as braille, and been adapted more than two dozen times in various mediums. A musical version first produced by the Charlottetown Festival in 1965 is the longest running annual musical theatre production in the world, while the award-winning 1985 CBC miniseries starring Megan Follows is the most-watched television program in Canadian history. Thousands of tourists visit Prince Edward Island each year to see the “sacred sites” related to the book, and the sale of Anne-related commodities such as souvenirs and dolls has come to constitute a cottage industry.

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Barney's Version

The film Barney's Version (2010), produced by Robert Lantos and directed by Richard J. Lewis, takes on the challenge of adapting Mordecai Richler's unruly onslaught of a final novel.

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Bear (Novel)

Bear, by Marian Engel (Toronto, 1976), winner of the Governor-General's Award, has been called the most controversial novel ever written in Canada because of its heroine's erotic relationship with a bear.

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Book Clubs

Canada's first book club was started in 1928 when the T. Eaton Company LTD offered its customers "a selective literary service." A committee of literary authorities made a monthly selection of titles - sold to the membership at an average price of $2.

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Books in Canada

Books in Canada (fd 1971) was a book review magazine distributed by subscription and sold in book stores and newsstands throughout English-speaking Canada; before it went on hiatus in early 2008, it appeared 9 times a year.

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Writers' Trust of Canada

The Writers' Trust of Canada was founded in 1976 by five prominent Canadian authors, Margaret Atwood, Pierre Berton, Graeme Gibson, Margaret Laurence, and David Young, to encourage a flourishing writing community in this country.