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LEBLANC, GÉRALD, 1945-2005

Gérald Leblanc Fonds. - 1967-1999. - 3.25 m of textual record. - 183 photographs. - 1 poster.

Biographical Sketch

Gérald Leblanc, an Acadian, was born on 25 September 1945 in Bouctouche, New Brunswick. He lived and wrote in Moncton. Not only was he a prolific poet, novelist, and anthologist, but he also wrote for the theatre and radio, and as a critic, translator and writer of song lyrics. Gérald Leblanc, contributed in many ways to the Acadian cultural scene and was a leading figure in modern, urban, militant Acadian culture. He helped to found the Association des écrivains acadiens, the Éloizes literary review and, in 1980, became the literary editor of Éditions Perce-Neige, a publishing company dedicated to giving a voice to current Acadian literature.

Since 1981, Gérald Leblanc published more than 10 collections of poetry, including Comme un otage au quotidien (1981), Géographie de la nuit rouge (1984), Précis d'intensité (1985), Lieux transitoires (1986), L'Extrême frontière (1988), Les Matins habitables (1991), De la rue, la mémoire la musique (1993), Complaintes du continent (1993), Éloge du chiac (1995), Méditations sur le désir (with Guy Duguay, 1996), Je n'en connais pas la fin (1999), Le plus clair du temps (2001), and Géomancie (a reissue of the first three titles, 2003). His first novel, Moncton mantra (1997), was published and translated in English by Guernica in 2001. In 1988, together with Claude Beausoleil, he published the Anthologie de la poésie acadienne de 1948 à 1988.

He earned many awards for his books, including the review Estuaire's Prix Terrasses Saint-Sulpice (1993) for Complaintes du Continent; the Prix littéraire Pascal-Poirier awarded by the Government of New Brunswick (1993) for his creative work; and the Literary Award of the City of Moncton for L'Extrême frontière (1989).

Herménégilde Chiasson said that Leblanc "linked Acadia to America and brought modernity into our writing, after it was so brutally taken hostage by folklore." He also said that Gérald Leblanc was the "poet of the everyday, of love and other chimera that are good for the soul and leaves the body swooning." Serge Patrice Thibodeau talks about "his presence in everyday life that achieves existential ecstasy." (translation)

Gérald Leblanc contributed to many periodicals both in Canada and abroad, and was invited to give readings of his work or to lecture about Acadian literature in many cities in Canada and the United States, France (Paris, LaRochelle, Caen, Grenoble, Lyon, Poitier, Lille); Belgium (Brussels, Namur, Liege); the Republic of Congo (Kinshasa); Mexico (Mexico City); the Czech Republic (Prague); Slovakia (Bratislava); and Switzerland (Délémont).

Scope and Content

The fonds provides an overview of Gérald Leblanc's literary output and the role he played in Acadia. It includes unpublished material about various events that have marked Acadia's cultural and social history, and which he either had commented upon or took part. The fonds contains information about the key artistic and literary figures that Gérald Leblanc worked alongside and on the specific status of Acadian literature. The fonds, in addition to providing documentation about the evolution of urban Acadian culture in the second-half of the 20th century, is particularly strong on the literary trends that emerged in the 1970s in Acadia.

The fonds is arranged into 11 series: 1. Correspondence, 1967-1999; 2. Travel journal and records, 1971-1999; 3. Notebooks, and appointment books, [ca. 1973]-1999; 4. Poetry, 1972-2002; 5. Songs, 1977-1994; 6. Novels, short stories, tales and narratives, 1960-1997; 7. Performance texts, poetry readings, performances, [1975]-1997; 8. Theatre, television, film, 1974-1999; 9. Essays, articles and other writings, 1971-1994; 10. Translations, [1984?]-1991; 11. Photographs, 1970-2001.

The fonds also contains manuscript material, mainly holographic and annotated typescripts.

Immediate Source of Acquisition: acquired from Gérald Leblanc in June 2003.

Language: most of the material is in French, but the Poetry series contains a few items in English.

Restrictions: there are some restrictions on consultation, reproduction and publication.

Finding Aid: finding aid available.

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