- Contemporary Quebec: An Analytical Bibliography by Jacques Cotnam, and: Checklist of Printed Materials Relating to French-Canadian Literature, 1763–1968 by Gérard Tougas (review)
- University of Toronto Quarterly
- University of Toronto Press
- Volume 43, Number 4, Summer 1974
- pp. 418-420
- View Citation
- Additional Information
418 LETTERS IN CANADA Jacques Cotnam, Contemporary Quebec: An Analytical Bibliography. McClelland & Stewart, 112, $2.95; 2nd edition, Gerard Tougas, ChecHist of Printed Materials Relating to French-Canadian Literature, 1763- 1968, Uni· vcrsity of British Columbia Press, xvi, 174, $9.50 cloth, $6.50 paper The past decade has been characterized by a great increase in the amount of published material on Quebec and the Quebecois. Fortunately this Rood of publication has prompted scholars to provide some bibliographical assistance for the interested reader. Professor Jacques Cotnam's inexpensive little guide, Contemporary Quebec: An Analytical Bibliography, is directed particularly at English-speaking high school and college students: it is limited to recent separately published studies and its classifications are self-explanatory. After an introductory section listing nearly forty general bibliographies, dictionaries, and other reference works, the entries are arranged under twenty-eight alphabetical headings: Architecture, Arts and Folklore, Biculturalism and Bilingualism, Culture, Demography, and so on. Within each section titles are grouped as 'bibliographies,' 'studies,' or 'periodicals.' For each entry the publisher, date, and pagination are given but authors' first names are reduced to initials. Individual sections include a generous and usually representative selection of titles in both English and French, although without comment on the relative value of widely differing works. Some of the larger sections might have been usefully subdivided : 'Economy, Industry and Agriculture,' for example, contains 140 undifferentiated entries. Items are not numbered, and there is no index. As might be expected in a pocket guide, there is some unevenness in the selection: a few important general studies ( Helmut Kallmann , A History of Music in Canada, 1534- 1914; Gustave Lanctot, Histoire du Canada; Marcel Trudel, Histoire de la Nouvelle-France) are missing, whereas some specialized monographs (Victor Barbeau, Geraldine Bourbeau, peintre-ceramiste-critique d'artl906-1953; A. Laplante, Les Associations parents-ma,tres) are included. On the whole, however, Professor Cotnam is to be congratulated on the excellent coverage he provides in very limited space. The section on 'Literature' is particularly successful in this regard; in addition to listing the most useful critical studies it provides a list of more than fifty French-Canadian literary works available in English translation. (An even more complete list of this type was published by Philip Stratford in the translators' journal Meta in December 1968.) For the student beginning the study of contemporary Quebec or for the general reader unsure 'where to start' in acquainting himself with Canada's HUMANITIES 419 French-speaking province, Professor Cotnam's little book should be very helpful. Conceived for a different purpose but equally welcome is the second and greatly enlarged edition of Professor Gerard Tougas' bilingual Checklist of Printed Materials Relating to French-Canadian Literature, 17631968 . When the lirst edition of this checklist appeared in 1958, it bore testimony to Professor Tougas' own early and tireless efforts to build up an important French-Canadian collection on the Pacific coast. The presence in the new edition of more than 2,800 titles confirms the continuing success of those efforts while demonstrating at the same time the unusual expansion of belles-lettres in Quebec during the intervening years. Furthermore this is a genuinely revised edition: not only have many new items been added, almost doubling the total number of pages, but the original entries have been expanded, corrected, standardized in format, and reset in more readable type, thus making a completely new book. The category of 'French-Canadian literature' has been generously interpreted in the checklist to include not only fiction, poetry, drama, and literary criticism, but also biography of literary figures, travel narratives, political oratory, and oral folklore. Excluded are pulpit oratory, philosophy, and history (except Fran~ois-Xavier Garneau), newspapers and magazines . Translations and subsequent editions of works listed have been included. The arrangement is alphabetical by author, with book-length critical studies indented under the name of the author treated. Full authors' names are given, with explanation of pseudonyms, and place, publisher, and pagination are accurately indicated. EspeCially valuable in both editions is the inclusion of hundreds of unpublished bio-bibliographical theses on Canadian authors submitted to the library school of the University of Montreal. In the absence of a general bibliography of French...