Co-Edited by Candida Rifkind and Linda Warley
Life Writing Series. Wilfrid Laurier University Press. May 2016.
A collection of scholarly essays on Canadian cartoonists and illustrators, including chapters on Chester Brown, Seth, Julie Doucet, Sarah Leavitt, Scott Chantler, Ho Che Anderson, David Alexander Robertson, John Lang, Willow Dawson, and Hervé Bouchard and Janice Nadeau.
“An essential resource for anyone interested in Canadian comics, life writing, and political issues. Beautifully produced with a useful introduction and fascinating essays about major and emerging cartoonists in Canada and Quebec, Canadian Graphic puts the study of Canadian autobiographical and biographical comics on the academic map and shows us ways to think about one of the most exciting developments in Canadian cultural expression today.”
– Julie Rak, University of Alberta
REVIEWS (hover for links)
Brenna Clarke Gray, “Candour, Comics, CanLit.” Canadian Literature 235 (Winter 2017): 179-80.
Nick Martinez, Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics. Pub. Jan. 28 2017. Web.
WINNER OF THE 2016 GABRIELLE ROY PRIZE FOR THE BEST WORK IN ENGLISH CANADIAN LITERARY CRITICISM
University of Toronto Press, 2009. 256 pages.
Winner of the 2010 Ann Saddlemyer Award, for an outstanding book-length monograph, awarded by the Canadian Association for Theatre Research/Association canadienne de la recherche théâtrale (CATR/ACRT)
While Canadian historians have studied socialism in the 1930s, and although there have been many studies of American and British literary leftists from this period, Comrades and Critics is the first full-length study of Canada's 1930s literary left. Challenging dominant perceptions that this decade was a lull between the more celebrated modernist enterprises of the 1920s and 1940s, Candida Rifkind argues that the events of the 1930s - from mass unemployment, to the dustbowl, to the Spanish Civil War - galvanized a generation of writers, leading them to unite artistic practice and political action in provocative and influential ways.
Analyzing and recovering much-neglected poems, plays, manifestoes, and documentaries, Rifkind demonstrates how leftist cultural production came to dominate English-Canadian literature by the end of the decade. She pays particular attention to the significant role that women writers played in this period and examines a diverse group of writers that included Dorothy Livesay, Anne Marriott, Irene Baird, and Toby Gordon Ryan. These writers negotiated the struggle to revolutionize both literature and politics, while being subject to the gender hierarchies of socialism and literary modernism that continued long after the thirties came to an end.
A groundbreaking study in Canadian history and literature, Comrades and Critics is a much-needed examination of an important and still influential literary period.