As Always Front Cover

Paperback / softback
ISBN: 9780889228962
Pages: 232
Pub. Date: May 15 2015
Dimensions: 8.5" x 5.5" x 0.875"
Rights: Available: WORLD
Non-Fiction / BIO007000

  • BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Literary Figures

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As Always
A Memoir of a Life in Writing
By Madeleine Gagnon
Translated by Phyllis Aronoff & Howard Scott

One of Canada’s greatest literary figures reflects on life at the centre of Quebec literary arts. Re-examining the influences of her early life in a large, rural Catholic family, Madeleine Gagnon not only explores her rejection of unexamined values as part of her intellectual development but also her refusal to be categorized by her gender.

Karl Marx replaced Paul Claudel in Gagnon’s intellectual pantheon. Psychoanalysis gave rise to the desire to write, and her first works poured out in a torrent. She describes the friendships that played such a large part in her life and the feminist battles of the time with all their hopes and disappointments. At the same time she casts a sharp eye on contemporary Quebec society, tracing the emergence of a distinct Canadian literature.

This is an account of a life well lived, told with candour, wisdom, and an inextinguishable sense of wonder.

Short-listed 2015 Cole Foundation Prize for Translation (Quebec Writers' Federation Awards

“An engaging read that invites both admirers of Gagnon’s writing and a scholarly audience. To the credit of Phyllis Aronoff and Howard Scott, Gagnon’s voice is unmistakable – intelligent, passionate, and determined – in what appears to be an effortless English translation.”
Montreal Review of Books

“A portrait of a changing Quebec. And an account of the life of a woman who, at nearly seventy-five, is examining who she has become in the light of who she has been... little girl, sister, lover, mother, intellectual, feminist, writer. They are all present in this book.”
– Danielle Laurin, Le Devoir

“It’s been a long time since I’ve read anything as beautiful and luminous as this book.”
– Manon Trépanier, Radio-Canada

“She always wanted to learn. She always wanted to write. She always wanted to fight injustice. The autobiography of Madeleine Gagnon, one of our greatest literary figures, takes us through the private life and the intellectual and artistic career of a passionately committed woman in a Quebec undergoing a major transformation … not to be missed.”
– Chantal Guy, La Presse