Journées de la culture 2018: Historical and Literary Tour

Mile End Memories, in collaboration with the Mordecai-Richler Library, presents a new version of its Historical and Literary Tour of Mile End during the Journées de la culture.

Rediscover the neighbourhood with a walking tour featuring historical and literary references to places that have inspired many authors and artists. The walk, led by Mile End Memories, will be followed by a discussion with three authors who have written about Mile End: Myriam Beaudoin, Saleema Nawaz, and Pierre Anctil.

** Chosen as a notable initiative 2018 for the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough in the Montreal library system **

Reservations required: Register by telephone or in person at the library – 514 872-2141.
There will be two groups, one in English and the other in French.

Sunday 30 September 2018, 1:00 to 4:30 pm
Bibliothèque Mordecai-Richler – quartier du Mile End
5434 avenue du Parc, Montreal (near Saint-Viateur, 80 bus)
The walk will follow a loop, departing from and returning to the library. The walk will be followed by a (bilingual) discussion with the three authors and the participants.

The authors

Myriam Beaudoin

Myriam Beaudoin / photo: Martine Doyon

Myriam Beaudoin is a Montreal-based author, born in Sherbrooke. Her years teaching young Jewish girls at the Belz Hassidic school in Outremont inspired her to write Hadassa, published in 2006. Mile End is at the heart of this novel in which two love stories are intertwined, one about a young Québecoise teacher and her Jewish students, the other of the unlikely meeting of an immigrant and a Hassidic woman questioning her society. Hadassa was awarded the Prix des collégiens and the Prix France-Québec.

Myriam Beaudoin holds a master’s in création littéraire from McGill University and will soon be publishing her fourth novel.


Saleema Nawaz

Saleema Nawaz / photo: Dallas Curow

Saleema Nawaz is a Montreal-based author, born in Ottawa. In 2008, she published Mother Superior, a collection of short stories, and in 2013, Bone & Bread. The novel describes the intense and complex relationship between two orphaned sisters, Beena and Sadhana. They live in an apartment upstairs from a bagel bakery located in the heart of Mile End. The business belongs to their father, an immigrant from India. After the death of their parents, the bakery is taken over by their uncle, a traditionalist Sikh who finds it very hard to understand his nieces.

Bone & Bread was a finalist in the CBC Canada Reads competition in 2016 and won the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction awarded by the Quebec Writers’ Federation for the best work of fiction published in 2013.


Pierre Anctil

Pierre Anctil / photo: Richard-Max Tremblay

Pierre Anctil is a full professor in the History Department of the University of Ottawa. He specializes in the history of immigration to Canada during the first half of the 20th century, in particular that of Montreal’s Jewish community. As a result, he has studied several writers who lived in Mile End or whose works portray the neighbourhood, including poets A. M. Klein and Jacob-Isaac Segal, and writer Mordecai Richler. He translated Lekhaim! by Malka Zipora, which chronicles Hassidic life in Montreal. Pierre Anctil, who also wrote Histoire des Juifs du Québec (Boréal, 2017), received the Louis Rosenberg Distinguished Service Award from the Association for Canadian Jewish Studies in 2015.