Journey with No Maps: A Life of P.K. Page

Overview


Shortlist, Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction Journey with No Maps is the first biography of P.K. Page, the brilliant twentieth-century poet and a fine artist. The product of over a decade's research and writing, the book follows Page as she becomes one of Canada's best-loved and most influential writers. "A borderline being," as she called herself, she recognized the new choices offered to women by modern life but followed only those related to her quest for self-discovery. Tracing Page's life ...
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Journey with No Maps: A Life of P.K. Page

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Overview


Shortlist, Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction Journey with No Maps is the first biography of P.K. Page, the brilliant twentieth-century poet and a fine artist. The product of over a decade's research and writing, the book follows Page as she becomes one of Canada's best-loved and most influential writers. "A borderline being," as she called herself, she recognized the new choices offered to women by modern life but followed only those related to her quest for self-discovery. Tracing Page's life through two wars, world travels, the rise of modernist and Canadian cultures, and later Sufi study, biographer Sandra Djwa details the people and events that inspired her work. Page's independent spirit propelled her from Canada to England, from work as a radio actress to a scriptwriter for the National Film Board, from an affair with poet F.R. Scott to an enduring marriage with diplomat Arthur Irwin. Page wrote her story in poems, fiction, diaries, librettos, and her visual art. Journey with No Maps reads like a novel, drawing on the poet's voice from interviews, diaries, letters, and writings as well as the voices of her contemporaries. With the vividness of a work of fiction and the thoroughness of scholarly dedication, Djwa illustrates the complexities of Page's private experience while also documenting her public emergence as an internationally known poet. It is both the captivating story of a remarkable woman and a major contribution to the study of Canada’s literary and artistic history.

Winner of the 2013 Governor General's Literary Award for Nonfiction

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This first full biography of a multitalented poet and visual artist, who won applause from such disparate figures as Stephen Spender, Joseph Brodsky and Margaret Atwood, is a foundational work future studies will consult for a full appreciation of Page's astonishing career as a major artist of our time." David Staines, The Globe & Mai

"Journey with No Maps is not just a biography of a poet, but of a painter, and a relentless explorer of the human condition." Montreal Review of Books

"[Journey with No Maps] is a body of work that will endure for generations." The Gazette

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780773541917
  • Publisher: McGill-Queens University Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/2013
  • Pages: 444
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author


Sandra Djwa is professor emeritus of English at Simon Fraser University, and the prize- winning author of The Politics of the Imagination: A Life of F.R. Scott and Professing English: A Life of Roy Daniells.
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Table of Contents

Illustrations ix

Preface xiii

1 Beginnings, 1884-1927 3

2 Calgary: Intimations, 1928-1934 24

3 England: Discovering Modernism, 1934-1935 37

4 Saint John: Apprenticeship, 193 5-1941 46

5 Montreal: Art and Life, 1941-1944 69

6 Halifax and Victoria: Loss, 1944-1946 93

7 Ottawa: Recovery, 1946-1953 108

8 Australia: The Journey Out, 1953-1956 136

9 Brazil: Exotic "Worlds, 1957-1959 161

10 Mexico: New Maps, 1960-1964 177

11 Victoria: Finding Oneself, 1964-1969 199

12 Victoria: Inner Events, 1970-1979 221

13 Victoria: Transformations, 1980-1989 247

14 Victoria: Acclaim, 1990-1999 268

15 Victoria: Endings, 2000-2010 292

Acknowledgments 323

Notes 327

Bibliography 381

Index 395

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