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Spadoni, Carl and Judith Donnelly
Toronto, ECW Press, 1994. 862pp, cloth, $75.00
ISBN 1-55022-171-X. Distributed by General Distribution Services. CIP


Reviewed by Ted Monkhouse.

Volume 22 Number 6
1994 November/December

Another of the Canadian Studies Research Tools granted under the auspices of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Canada, this bibliography fills an important gap in Canadian literary and publishing history. McClelland & Stewart had a definite influence on our society by purposely publishing that which is a distinctly Canadian literature and fostering a special link between author and publisher.

Because M&S had no house library, McMaster University's Spadoni and Donnelly undertook a gargantuan task, unselfishly aided by librarians and antiquarian book dealers everywhere. It was natural that the William Ready Division of Archives and Research Collections should undertake this project, as they also possess the archives of other major Canadian publishing houses such as Clarke Irwin and Macmillan of Canada.

On one hand, a scholar of Canadian society is well served by Jack McClelland's preface, which gives fascinating insight into this giant of Canadian publishing. The 34-page historical introduction provides additional wealth of information on what it takes to publish but also remain Canadian must reading for every librarian, along with the 4-page chronology, which pinpoints significant milestones in Canadian literary publishing history.

For the researcher, bibliographer and cataloguer, this publication is eminently useful and practical. Covering M&S imprints as well as predecessors and associated companies, the bibliographical methods and principles applied leave little if anything to be desired. The volume does not include simultaneous publications or those for which M&S was only an agent. It also excludes sales catalogues, publisher's dummies and in-house newsletters. An appendix describes archival resources such as company records and Jack McClelland's personal papers.

Organized chronologically by year and then alphabetically by main entry, each of the 3677 descriptions contains 1) item number, 2) main entry, 3) pagination, 4) size, 5) binding, 6) printer, 7) other authorial authority, 8) historical notes, 9) series, 10) bibliographical references, 11) copy examined, 12) quasi-facsimile transcription of title page, and 13) location symbol. There is a 7-page listing of sources cited along with 11 pages of examples of text illustration. Appendices also list 1326 M&S unlocated imprints and titles in all series. The indices are very useful. The name index contains approximately 3700 entries and about 5000 titles.

Well spaced and headed, with judicious use of holding, type fonts and numeration, this is a user-friendly tool. It is a must buy for every academic, public and other library where Canada's literary heritage is a focus.

Highly recommended.

Ted Monkhouse is a retired teacher-librarian and library consultant in Guelph, Ontario
line indexes


1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


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