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BERSIANIK, LOUKY, 1930-
LMS-0218

Louky Bersianik fonds. - 1964-1995. - 8.5 m of textual record (pseudonym for Lucille Durand).

Biographical Sketch

Poet, novelist, playwright and children's author Louky Bersianik was born, Lucille Durand, in Montreal, Quebec, in 1930. After completing a classical education at Collège Jésus-Marie (B.A., 1950), she graduated with her master's degree (with a thesis on Bernanos) from the Faculté des lettres and a bachelor's degree in Library Science from the École de bibliothéconomie at the Université de Montréal. She continued her studies at the Sorbonne and the Centre d'études de radio et de télévision in Paris, where she lived for almost five years. Returning to Montreal, she was a librarian at the Bibliothèque municipale de Montréal (1956-1958) and the Cégep du Vieux-Montréal (1968-1970). She was also a writer, scriptwriter and researcher for radio, television and film, and taught creative writing at Concordia University and the Université du Québec à Montréal.

From 1964 on, she published children's stories, illustrated by her husband, Jean Letarte. Togo, apprenti-remorqueur won the Prix de la province de Québec (1966). In 1976, she adopted the pseudonym Louky Bersianik to distinguish her writing life from her previous life. Her novel, L'Euguélionne : roman triptyque (1976), is considered a major work because of its treatment of male-female relations. The National Film Board film Firewords, produced by Dorothy Todd Hénault (1986), is based on this novel. Her second novel, Le Pique-nique sur l'Acropole (1979), also followed a feminist theme, and is an important example of Quebec feminism. She has given many public lectures and her poetry, dramatic works and essays on feminism have been published in a number of anthologies. Les Agénésies du vieux monde (1982), La Main tranchante du symbole (1990) and 20 other essays on feminist themes were written between 1980 and 1990. L'Euguélionnne was translated into English by Howard Scott. This translation won the Governor General's Literary Award in 1997.

Scope and Content

The Louky Bersianik fonds contains correspondence related to her professional activities including symposia, talks, lectures, round tables, etc; manuscripts of published works of fiction and poetry; preparatory notebooks; scores of recorded songs in manuscript; manuscripts and preparatory notebooks for novels and collections of poetry in progress; personal papers; personal correspondence; diaries; family archives; etc. The fonds also contains scripts of radio and television series; films and plays; and preparatory notes for writing workshops.

Immediate Source of Acquisition: acquired from the author in 1996. [1996-02]

Language: material in the fonds is in French.

Restrictions: none.

Finding Aid: in preparation.

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