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Serge Patrice Thibodeau Fonds. - 1976-2002. - 2.57 m of textual record and other materials.

Biographical Sketch

Poet and essayist Serge Patrice Thibodeau was born on 11 August 1959 in Rivière Verte, New Brunswick. After his studies at the Centre universitaire Saint-Louis (Université de Moncton, Edmundston campus) and at Université Laval, he completed an MA in Creative Literary Studies in 1996 at the Université du Québec à Montréal. Serge Patrice Thibodeau, an inveterate traveller, has lived in Montréal since 1986. Literary critics see him as the revelation of the 1990s in Quebec poetry. Some include him among key poets of our era and believe that his collections deserve to be placed alongside those of the masters of French literature.

Serge Patrice Thibodeau's writings, which have been influenced by his travels in Asia, the Middle East and a number of cities in Europe, including Prague, Budapest and Warsaw, focus on themes of wandering and erotic desire. His work expresses a mystical and sensual quest, imbued with Islamic and Christian forms of spirituality.

Serge Patrice Thibobeau, who is active in Amnesty International, has published a major essay on torture. He is in demand as a lecturer internationally, not only for his views on human rights, but also for what he has to say about Quebec and Acadian poetry. He has taken part in many literary events in Canada and abroad, and many of his poems have been translated into English, Arabic, Castilian (Spanish), Catalan, Romanian, Slovakian and Czech.

His books have received many awards, including the Prix France-Acadie (1991); the Prix Émile-Nelligan (1992), the Prix Edgar-Lespérance (1994), the Grand Prix du Festival international de la poésie de Trois-Rivières, and the Governor General's Literary Award (1996), in addition to the Prix Éloizes (2001).

Scope and Content

The Serge Patrice Thibodeau fonds consists of various writings between 1976 and 2002. It is arranged into nine series: 1. Poetry; 2. Essays; 3. Journal and review articles; 4. Juvenilia, unpublished works and university works; 5. Diaries, notebooks, notepads and appointment books; 6. Professional activities; 7. Correspondence; 8. Translations and writings about the work of Serge Patrice Thibodeau; 9. Amnesty International.

The materials in this fonds, which are very dense in terms of information content, are an invaluable resource for research in literary studies, particularly on the development of the text and biographical interpretation. They reveal Serge Patrice Thibodeau's working methods, show the development of his writing and his progress as a writer over a 20-year span, from his punk/new wave period in the early 1980s until the spiritual quest that gave rise to his works of the 1990s.

The fonds contains many drafts of his 10 major collections of poetry: La Septième chute (1990), Le Cycle de Prague (1992), Le Passage des glaces (1992), Nous, l'étranger (1995), Le Quatuor de l'errance followed by La Traversée du désert (1995), Nocturnes (1997), Dans la Cité followed by Pacífica (1997), Le Roseau (1997 and 2000), Seuils (2002), Du haut de mon arbre (2002).

The fonds contains several items of unpublished juvenilia, some of which were written in English; oratorio libretti; one-of-a-kind books written and bound by the author; unpublished university work; and early versions of the script for the film Le Désir et l'Argile, produced in cooperation with Assyrian filmmaker Baz Shamoun in 1997. The fonds also includes several files pertaining to Serge Patrice Thibodeau's participation in literary and cultural events, not only in Canada and Quebec, but also in France, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The fonds includes press kits for his publications; correspondence with publishers, organizations and famous politicians and people from the world of culture, as well as his personal correspondence. Also included are some files that are indicative of Serge Patrice Thibodeau's commitment to Amnesty International. There are also several manuscript drafts of two essays published in book form by Serge Patrice Thibodeau, L'Appel des mots: Lecture de Saint-Denys Garneau and La Disgrâce de l'humanité: Essai sur la torture, and a few drafts of four short essays published in periodicals or exhibition catalogues: Enluminures, La fierté acadienne se donne désormais des airs d'internationalisme; De la liberté d'expression; and Poésie acadienne. There are also two holographic drafts of Écrire contre Écrire sur (de l'auto censure). The fonds contains approximately 40 diaries, notebooks and notepads containing preliminary notes and the initial versions of some of Serge Patrice Thibodeau's works, particularly his poems. These diaries and notebooks also contain some personal writings, some prayers in French and Arabic, some travel journals, lecture notes, statements of accounts, travel budgets and various appointment books that provide information on at least part of Serge Patrice Thibodeau's everyday, professional, cultural and social life.

Immediate Source of Acquisition: acquired from Serge Patrice Thibodeau in September 2002.

Language: most of the material is in French, but some series include materials in Arabic and English.

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

Finding Aid: finding aid available.

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