In this bilingual nation, where language forms the basis for much cultural and political debate, the role of the writer takes on greater significance. In addition to profiles of writers of novels, short-stories, drama and other literary forms, active between the First World War and 1960-this DLB volume also brings together entries on a noteworthy group of poets who changed the shape of Canadian literature. While some attempted to preserve an illusion of tradition and order, many poets and others writing in Canada during this period questioned the validity of convention by upsetting the conventions of formal style. Responding to depression, drought and other forces in the 1930s, many writers focused on the grimmer realities of rural life. Many used observation-with a first person persona or narrator-to invite readers to participate in their social dialogue.
76 entries include: Carle Birney, Louis Dudek, Robert Finch, Arthur Hailey, Gilles Henault, Patricia Joudry, Henry Kreisel, Irving Layton, Joyce Marshall, Leslie McFarlane (Franklin W. Dixon), Marshall McLuhan, Al Purdy, A.J.M. Smith, George Woodcock.