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Poetry Australian & Oceanian

The Poetry of Louis Dudek

Definitive Collection

by (author) Louis Dudek

Dundurn Press
Initial publish date
Aug 2000
Australian & Oceanian, Canadian, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Aug 2000
    List Price

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When Dudek selected and arranged the poems in this book he intended this to be the "definitive" collection of his poems. This contains selections from 20 of his previous book between 1944 and 1997.

Louis Dudek … prolific poet, critic and literary activist … has had a long and distinguished career as one of Canada’s major writers.

Louis Dudek is a poet, editor, teacher, publisher, translator, and critic. His parents emigrated from Poland before WWII, and Dudek grew up in the French East End of Montreal. He graduated from McGill in 1939, and then obtained his PhD from Columbia University in New York. In 1944 he was included in a collection entitled Unit of Five, which included the work of Raymond Souster, PK Page, James Wreford and Ronald Humbleton who served as editor. In 1946, Dudek published his first solo collection, East of the City, setting the work in his childhood. In 1951, he joined the faculty of McGill, lecturing in modern poetry. He remained on faculty as Greenshields Professor of English until 1984, when he became Professor Emeritus. As a critic, teacher and theoretician, Dudek influenced the teaching of Canadian poetry in most schoolsand universities. As a publisher, critic and mentor of many poets, he directly influenced the lives and careers of numerous authors and has had a profound effect on the evolution of Canadian literature.

About the author


Karis Shearer is currently a doctoral candidate at The University of Western Ontario, where she is completing her dissertation on postmodern cultural workers and the Canadian long poem. She has published articles on women’s writing and the poetry of Lynn Crosbie, and has guest-edited an issue of Open Letter on new Canadian fiction writers.

Louis Dudek was one of Canada’s most important and influential cultural workers. After gaining his PhD from Columbia University, Dudek in 1951 returned from New York to Montreal, the city of his birth, to take up a position as professor of English at McGill. Dudek’s return to Canada marked the beginning of his efforts to revolutionize the Montreal poetry scene through little magazines and small-press publishing, providing alternatives to commercial presses and opportunities for talented young poets. In 1956 he started The McGill Poetry Series, which gave a start to several young poets, including Leonard Cohen. The author of numerous books of poetry, Louis Dudek died in 2001.

Frank Davey has been a poet, editor, small-magazine publisher, literary critic, and cultural critic in Canada since 1961. He is editor and co-founder of the influential poetry newsletter Tish (1961-63) and since 1965 editor of Open Letter, the Canadian journal of writing and theory. With Fred Wah in 1984, he founded SwiftCurrent, the world’s first online literary magazine, and operated it until 1990. His more than forty books include Louis Dudek and Raymond Souster (1980), The Abbotsford Guide to India (1986), Reading Canadian Reading (1988), Canadian Literary Power (1994), and Back to the War (2005).


Louis Dudek's profile page

Other titles by Louis Dudek