Madeleine Gagnon has made a mark on Quebec literature as a poet, novelist, and non-fiction writer. Born in Amqui, a little village in the Matapedia Valley on Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula, she decided at the age of twelve to be a writer, and after her early education with the Ursuline nuns, went on to study literature, philosophy, and psychoanalysis at the Université de Montréal, the Sorbonne, and the Université d’Aix-en-Provence, where she received her doctorate. Since 1969, she has published over thirty books while at the same time teaching literature in several Quebec universities.
Phyllis Aronoff translates fiction, non-fiction and poetry from French, solo or with co-translator Howard Scott, with whom she won the Governor General’s Award for translation in 2018 for Descent Into Darkness, by Edem Awumey. Among her recent translations is Message Sticks, by Innu poet Joséphine Bacon. In addition to literature, she has translated widely in the humanities. The Wanderer, her translation of La Québécoite, by Régine Robin, received the Jewish Book Award for fiction in 1998. Her co-translations with Howard Scott include four books by Madeleine Gagnon and Two Solicitudes, conversations between Victor-Lévy Beaulieu and Margaret Atwood. Scott and Aronoff received the Quebec Writers’ Federation Translation Award (2002) for The Great Peace of Montreal of 1701, by Gilles Havard, and several of their translations have been finalists for various other awards.
Howard Scott is a Montreal literary translator who works with fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. His translations include works by Madeleine Gagnon, science-fiction writer Élisabeth Vonarburg, and Canada’s Poet Laureate, Michel Pleau. Scott received the Governor General’s Literary Award for his translation of Louky Bersianik’s The Euguelion. The Great Peace of Montreal of 1701, by Gilles Havard, which he co-translated with Phyllis Aronoff, won the Quebec Writers’ Federation Translation Award. A Slight Case of Fatigue, by Stéphane Bourguignon, another co-translation with Phyllis Aronoff, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. Howard Scott is a past president of the Literary Translators’ Association of Canada.
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…and so we ended up working together on Women in a World at War (2003). We followed that up with My Name is …