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Dorothy Livesay fonds, 1909-1996

MSS 37, PC 43, TC 31, A.86-19, A.92-21, A.02-36, A.04-110

23.4 m of textual records and other material

Livesay was born in Winnipeg in 1909 and moved to Toronto with her parents at the age of ten. Her father J.F.B. Livesay was the first general manager of the Canadian Press, a war correspondent during World War I, and author of Canada's Hundred Days (1919). Her mother, Florence Randal Livesay, was a poet of distinction and a pioneer in the field of translating verse from Ukrainian into English. Dorothy studied at the University of Toronto and the Sorbonne, afterwards becoming a welfare worker, then a newspaper reporter, and finally a teacher. She taught canadian literature at the University of Victoria for two years. At the University of Alberta she taught canadian literature and creative writing. She also taught in the United States and Zambia, in the latter as a UNESCO field specialist. Known chiefly as a poet, Dorothy Livesay won the Lorne Pierce Medal in 1947 for distinguished service to canadian literature. During the 1940s she was twice honoured with the Governor-General's Award for Poetry. Some of her best-known poetry publications include Green Pitcher (1928), Call My People Home (1950), Ice Age (1975), Right Hand Left Hand (1977), The Woman I Am (1977), The Phases of Love (1983), and Journey With My Selves: a Memoir, 1909-1963 (1991). She died on December 29, 1996.

Acquired in 1978, 1986,1992, 2002, 2004 from Dorothy Livesay and her heirs.

The collection consists of biographical material, correspondence, drafts, and versions of Livesay's writings of all genres. Over half of the Livesay collection consists of papers that are strictly non literary yet directly related to her life and work. This material is divided into five categories: autobiographical, biographical, bibliographical, business papers regarding her writing and her personal business papers. The remainder of the manuscript collection consists of plays, reviews, poems, short stories, essays, talks and addresses, and memoirs. The photograph collection contains pictures of family and friends, places and buildings, and Livesay herself. The tape collection consists of conversations between Livesay and others, interviews, poetry readings, radio broadcasts, music, and memoirs.

Access restrictions on certain material and copyright restrictions apply

No Further accurals are expected

Finding aids available:

Manuscript Collection: MSS 37

Photograph Collection: PC 43

Tape Collection: TC 31