Cover image for L.M. Montgomery and Canadian culture
L.M. Montgomery and Canadian culture
Epperly, Elizabeth R.
Publication Information:
Toronto ; Buffalo : University of Toronto Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
xv, 267 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PR9199.3.M6 Z73 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Despite the enormous popularity of her books, particularly Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery's role in the development of Canada's national culture is not often discussed by literary historians. This is curious as some of Canada's leading writers, including Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro, and Jane Urquhart, have acknowledged their indebtedness to Montgomery's fiction.

That scholars have not mined the 'Canadianness' of Montgomery's writing is redressed by this collection. It is the first systematic effort to investigate and explore Montgomery's active engagement with Canadian nationalism and identity, including regionalism, canon formation, and Canadian-American cultural relations. It examines her work in relation to the many dramatic changes of her day, such as the women's movement and the advent of new technologies; and it looks at the national and international consumption of Anne of Green Gables, in the form of both 'high' culture and cultural tourism.

The wide range of contributors represent views from across disciplines and boundaries, including feminist, biographical, psychoanalytical, historical, and cultural approaches. The scholarly reflections are punctuated to great effect by creative pieces, personal reflections, and interviews.

This ground-breaking collection will appeal to all fans of Montgomery's work and to students of Canadian letters. It places Montgomery and her work squarely in the mainstream of Canadian literary history, affirming her importance to our country's cultural development.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Wishing to shed light on the Canada revealed in Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables, Gammel and Epperly gathered a number of internationally recognized scholars for this systematic study of Montgomery's impact in shaping popular culture and tradition beyond Prince Edward Island. To escape the polarization of "low culture," the editors include several essays that explore the political significance of Canadian values: pioneering, loyalty, duty, courage, labor, and humanitarianism. The volume focuses on how family, church, education, and technology illustrate the author's Canadian nationalism in the first half of the 20th century. The essays also examine the book's heroine, Anne, as a cultural icon. Including a useful index and a helpful and extensive list of works cited, this volume joins other recent scholarship on Montgomery; particularly recommended are Epperly's The Fragrance of Sweet-Grass (1992), Gabriella Ahmansson's A Life and Its Mirrors (1991), and the anthology Harvesting Thistles, ed. by Mary Henley Rubio (1994). Readers who wish to learn more about the unique Canadian (as opposed to US) culture will also want to read Sarah Corse's Nationalism and Literature: The Politics of Culture in Canada and the United States (1997). Highly recommended for students of Canadian literature and culture, as well as for devotees of Anne of Green Gables. All collections. S. A. Parker; Hiram College