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Born in Montreal, Neil Besner grew up in Brazil, where he has taught and lectured widely. He taught Canadian literature at the University of Winnipeg from 1987 until his retirement in 2017. He writes mainly on Canadian literature and the poet Elizabeth Bishop, with books on Mavis Gallant (1988), Alice Munro (1990), an edited collection on Carol Shields (1995), and numerous articles. From 2004 to 2020 he was the general editor of the Laurier Poetry Series (LPS), a contemporary Canadian poetry series with Wilfrid Laurier University Press. Since 2017 he has lived in Toronto and continues to travel frequently to Brazil. He spends 4 months each summer on the shores of Lake of the Woods in Northwestern Ontario near the border with Manitoba.
His most recent book is the memoir Fishing With Tardelli: A Memoir of Family in Time Lost.
Interview / Entrevue
I hid The Swiss Family Robinson from them when I was around twelve. I couldn’t explain why; it just felt like forbidden reading.
“You must not forget anything.” (Philip Roth, the closing line of his 1996 memoir, Patrimony.)
I’m a clean desk person.
That I can’t understand the dream that just awoke me.
(I guess it’s secret no more.) To write a book so loving that all the angels swoon.
Well, keep on browsing—there’s no borrowing limit here!
Eh bien, continuez - il n'y a pas de limite d'emprunt ici!