UWinnipeg prof earns the 2016 Gabrielle Roy Prize

Dr. Candida Rifkind, photo supplied

The 2016 Gabrielle Roy Prize (English section) of the Association for Canadian and Quebec Literatures (ACQL) has been given to Canadian Graphic: Picturing Life Narratives, edited by UWinnipeg’s Dr. Candida Rifkind and her colleague Dr. Linda Warley (Wilfrid Laurier University Press). This prize was announced this past weekend in Toronto, ON. This prize honours the best book of Canadian literary criticism written in English. 

The jury’s comment noted that the editors Rifkind and Warley have assembled a ground-breaking collection of essays on graphic autobiographies by Canadian writers, “The collection as a whole tells the story of how this important and comparatively new genre evolved in Canada, introducing historically important publications and publishing houses as well as individual cartoonists. The book design is attractive and spacious, and the accompanying illustrations beautifully produced. Canadian Graphic is both a stimulating read and an important scholarly achievement.

“I congratulate Dr. Rifkind and her colleague for winning the prestigious ACQL Gabrielle Roy prize,” says Glenn Moulaison, Dean of Arts. “ For the past thirty years or so, this prize has honoured some of the most original and rigorous works of Canadian literary criticism.”

The jury was composed of Misao Dean (University of Victoria), Shelley Hulan (University of Waterloo), and Christl Verduyn (Mount Allison University).

Canadian Graphic: Picturing Life Narratives also contains chapters by two other UWinnipeg English faculty, Dr. Doris Wolf and Dr. Kathleen Venema.

Rifkind (English) specializes in alternative comics and graphic narratives, Canadian popular and political writing, and popular modernisms. Her award-winning book, Comrades and Critics: Women, Literature, and the Left in 1930s Canada, was published by the University of Toronto Press in 2009.

Recent and forthcoming publications include articles on Mountie serial fiction and kitsch, the biotopographies of Seth’s “picture novella” George Sprott, metabiography and black visuality in Ho Che Anderson’s comics biography King, scientific graphic biographies of Robert Oppenheimer, visual nostalgias of the Canadian company town, and the contested memories of Norman Bethune. She is currently writing a book about transnational graphic biographies with the support of a three-year Insight Grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. She is a regular reviewer of comics and graphic narratives for the Winnipeg Free Press.

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